To Rate with Stars or Not To Rate with Stars

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The blog has had a quiet few days as I tooled around in NYC at BOOKEXPO.  Sadly, this is not a recap post…but it is coming!  I am waiting for my books to come in the mail first.  In the mean time…I have this to entertain you. 😉

It has been ages since I’ve written a true discussion post for Books In Her Head.  But I’m back with some fresh ideas as I transition into summer and am hoping to make this a more regular feature.  That being said, my title for these discussion posts is subject to change (although I am rather fond of “food for thought”).

The subject that I want to discuss today is rating books, and by rating books I mean star ratings.  When I originally started blogging I was a huge fan of star ratings and incorporated them into every review that I published on this site.  However, in June of 2014 I rid my blog of my rating system.  You can read my explanation here but it basically boils down to that I felt that the star ratings were far too limiting and didn’t fully convey my thoughts.  Flash forward to 2017.  Now I am a lot more cognizant of the way that my reviews, my recommendations, and the books I give as gifts affect the authors and publishing houses I love.  I’ve begun more consistently cross posting my reviews on Goodreads and Barnes and Noble, and will likely start cross posting on Amazon in the near future. But, I have run into something that I haven’t considered in a long time now that I am more regularly cross posting…should I be star rating in addition to my reviews?  The short answer is–well yes.  Whether I like it or not many people consider star ratings almost exclusively when considering a book to read, and one of the simplest ways that I can garner support for a book/author I love is to assure future readers of its goodness.  Because many potential book buyers don’t necessarily read reviews…star ratings are the way to go.

So why am I so hesitant to just start adding star ratings?  Well first of all I have grown rather accustomed to their absence.  I adore writing critical reviews and even summarizing my thoughts in a final short paragraph, but boiling everything down to five stars?  I think that I’m going to have to re-teach myself.  There also is the whole 1/2 star debate that I’ve been observing from the sidelines for years…but where do I personally stand?  Also now I need to create star graphics…

As you can see from the size of these paragraphs, the pros of using star ratings clearly outweigh the cons.  It will be a small adjustment for me that could have a large impact on the industry that I care about.  At the end of the day, that’s good enough for me.

What are your thoughts?  Do you use star ratings when you review?



About Mary

i'm a seventeen year old girl whose passions include analyzing books, making music with the piano, and drinking orange ginger tea

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