Sunday, April 15, 2007

My Rating System

Out of five stars:

1. (Poor) - I am too good at judging a book to read something this bad. I hope.

2. (Good Effort but...) - A waste of time when there are so many books better than this. Borrow it from the library before you think about buying it.

3. (Fair to Middling) - Someone or something influenced me to read it and I have done my duty. I have enjoyed parts of it, I may even recommend it, but I won't read it again. A good enough story but not an especially memorable or exceptionally well-written one.

4. (Very Good) - Now we're cooking with gas. I was rewarded by reading it. This book makes it into my lit blog, my recommended list and my library. There's no good reason that every book shouldn't meet this standard.

5. (One of a kind) - This book is now a personal friend. I have to own a copy, whatever the cost. I will tell everyone about it, read it again, fondle it from time to time, and look upon it with good memories for the rest of my life.

Opinions on rating systems are welcomed. Which do you prefer? What do you use? Do you prefer reviews without any starred or numbered rating? Would you rather see some animal or object used instead of stars; fish, chickens, kittens etc. as some use or do they detract from the seriousness of a review in your opinion?

If you are an author or a publicist, what do you like to see in a review in the way of a rating?


  1. That's a nice rating system Sandra. I follow a very similar standard when having to rate a book in :)

    But I still find it a little difficult to choose just the right number for each book that I read. I'd sometimes give a book a rating of 4, then give the same rating to another book, but after some time when I compare my experiences with both books, I'd feel like one still significantly outweighs another so in my head I'd think one of them should've been 4.5 (or even 4.6 when I'm getting a bit obsessive about the whole rating thing). So to escape this predicament, I decided not to post number ratings on my blog; this way I don't feel any pressure to accurately quantify my reading experience. Either case, it still feels nice whenever I see a review give a rating of 5 to a book which I also thought of as being a 5 :)

  2. Stars or numbers are fine by me but I prefer a rating based on 5 as opposed to 10.

    You read so many books, Sandra! I've found the stars you use especially helpful when you don't have time for a more in depth review.

  3. I use stars 1-5 with the put down pick up factor as my criteria. If I can't put the book down for anything, it's a 5. If I have a hard time putting it down and then am anxious to get back to it, it's a 4. I think you need to rate books within their genre. A 5* cozy mystery is not a 5* literary fiction novel etc. I'm getting more picky about what I read so generally my books are 3.5-5*

  4. It is always interesting to me to learn about other people's rating system. I explain mine here -- it is different than yours in some ways, although both involve a five-star system.

    Out of habit, I don't include stars in my reviews on Rose City Reader. I put the stars only on my lists of books read each year, like this one for 2008. I also use the stars on my LibraryThing reviews. But not on my blog reviews. I wonder if I should change that????

  5. *Rose City Reader: I've always made it a point to put the stars beside any title whenever I mention it in any post. When I moved to Blogger last year I noticed that people don't do that. But more than one person has said they like they know immediately what I thought (in general terms) of any book I mention because the stars are right there. I know it doesn't look professional with all those stars everywhere, but I'm going to continue doing it. Once people are familiar with my blog they know I only recommend four or five star books anyway.

  6. Now I sort of want to go through all my reviews and add stars. :)



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