March 15, 2011

I’ve decided on the following scale and criteria for rating books in my reviews:

Rating Meaning to me

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆ 

Did not finish.

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆ 

Had a lot of issues with one or more parts of the story, was a struggle to keep reading.

Rating: ★★☆☆☆ 

Okay book. Had a number of issues that interfered with my enjoyment.

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

Good book. While it may have some issues, they are minor and I enjoyed it overall.

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Very good book. Might reread it and will definitely recommend it to others.

Rating: ★★★★★ 

One of the best books I’ve read. Will certainly reread it and highly recommend it to others. Might try to stop people on the street to tell them about it.

Be warned that I give out a five star review rarely. It means something to me and I’d like to keep it that way.

I’ve thought and thought about what rating system I should use, how I should use it and how I should (or should not) customize it. Many review sites have some sort of scale, equivalent to the *star* system but using a unit that relates to their site brand. I considered it… I could use drops of ink, or pens, or paper bags….

In the end, I decided that I should go with my tagline “It’s about the book” and forgo the idea. Stars are good and easy to understand, so stars it is. I also set the fraction at a half a star. It doesn’t make a lot of sense to get more granular than 5 rating sets or half-star increments as systems like that lose value the more granular they are. How can you decide if a book is a 95 or a 98? I just don’t think I can and I think it makes it too hard to understand. Thus the stars 🙂

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