Friday, January 13, 2012

A question to you about my rating system.

So I've been going through a bit of a blogger existentialist crisis, or as close to one as I could be, and it's all thanks to my god-damn rating system. The whole point of introducing it was so that at the end of my convoluted (not to mention long) reviews, there was a quick and easy way to see whether I liked a book or not. 5 meant is was the best thing since sliced bread, 1 meant it was utter dog-shit. Makes sense right? But now that I'm reviewing so many books, from so many genres, I'm starting to struggle with a rating. Like the other day, I finished a book and really enjoyed it and wanted to give it a 4, but then I realised a book I reviewed a few weeks previously, which was definitely not as good, was also given a 4. I could give it a 5, but it definitely isn't favourite book, multi re-read material, so I don't feel comfortable with that. I could give it a 4.5, but I feel like it's more than half a star better than the other one. You see my problem? 

I never wanted to have this sort of issue with my star rating. The whole idea was that the rating was supposed to indicate that specific book's appeal to me, and should never be held against another book, even one from the same genre. However that's obviously not working, because I'm definitely second-guessing all my ratings every time I finish a new book. So what do I do? I was thinking of scrapping the whole ratings thing all together, and hoping that you guys can all tell my general feelings and "read this now"-ness from the way I write my reviews, but I didn't want to scrap them all together without raising the issue with you guys, the people who read my reviews and potentially make note of the ratings. 

So let me know in the comments. Will it irk you to see the book review without a rating at the end of my review? And if yes, do you have any suggestions with how I should try and sort out my ratings issue? Perhaps it should be designated stars for aspects of the book, i.e. writing, characters, story etc. Or ??? 

Thanks in advance for the help guys!


  1. Well... I have never rated books just because I don't really know how to like assign a number to a book, and I think I would definitely suffer from needing to rate two books the same only I liked one way better because it would all get bad.

    So, that made no sense. But anyway, I think, personally, ditch the ratings because it's not worth stressing over and it's haaaard, and hard things aren't worth it either (NO ONE MAKE A PENIS JOKE RIGHT NOW). Um, so yeah. I say ditch. Hope that was helpful :s

  2. I used a rating system when I first started my blog last April, but it just doesn't work for me. I found it too subjective - like, I never assigned a 'meaning' to each number of stars, so I might like two books the same, but assign them different ratings on a whim. Does that even make sense?

    With regards to READING reviews, I don't pay the slightest bit of attention to ratings. I read the review and that's good enough for me! Aside from anything else - if it's stressing you out, definitely don't bother. It's just that simple.

  3. Thanks guys. I figured no one would care much but I thought I'd check the general thoughts out there before deleting a whole bunch of review ratings.

    Thanks for understanding!

  4. I struggled with it too - I use them but I don't make a feature of them and I have a page expalaining what the ratings mean to me.

    I would think its not worth the stress if it annoys you that much tho :)

  5. I have a similar struggle with ratings - I've given four stars to books that are completely different, and on completely different levels of writing (some better than others), and it just doesn't feel right. But at the end of the day it comes down to the reading experience and how strongly I want to recommend a book, I suppose.



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