Rating System

Okay, so I reviewed my post on how I rate books and I realize that I never really talked about how I rate books… Kind of sad, really. I mean, I talked about the means on which I base my rating off of, but I never really gave a clear picture as to the system I use! Shame on me!

So I just wanted to clear up any confusion anyone might have.

I base my book reviews off of a 5 star rating system, with quarter stars and half stars, as well. The following is my current rating system:

0 Stars: I couldn’t finish this book it was that bad.

1 Star: I managed to finish it miraculously, but it was still horrible beyond repair.

2 Stars: It wasn’t a good book, but I still read it.

3 Stars: It was an okay read. Heck, I may have even enjoyed it. But there was something about it that just didn’t click with me.

4 Stars: I enjoyed it! This is an average rating for me if I find books in the genres I like.

5 Stars: I LOVED it! It’s a definite reread in the future and one I will keep forever.

Quarter star (0.25 and 0.75) and half star (0.5) ratings can become common in my system. If I feel the book is deserving of a slightly elevated┬árating, I give it the appropriate star accordingly. So say it’s a 3.75 out of 5 star rating: It wasn’t so bad that it was the star before it, but it’s not quite good enough to meet the next star higher.

I use this system in all of my reviews currently. I also try to mention on Goodreads if a book is in the middle range between stars, such as the 3.75 rating.

For movie reviews I base my ratings off of a ten star system. I usually only do movie reviews if it’s a book-to-movie adaptation, so please be aware of that. This system is as follows:

0-3 Stars: I really hated this movie and don’t plan on ever seeing it again.

4-6 Stars: It was okay, but I mostly didn’t enjoy it. There were some things that were okay, but most of it just didn’t work for me.

7-9 Stars: I really enjoyed the movie and maybe I’ll watch it again sometime in the future.

10 Stars: I better own it. Amazing.

The quarter and half star ratings fall into place in this system, too.

So those are the overall rating systems that I have in place right now. They work for me and that’s all I’m looking for right now.

How I Rate Books

This has been a topic going around the Booktube stratosphere for a few weeks now and I figured I’d chime in on the subject.

The way I rate books is one of two ways, either I:

  1. Rate it based on how much I enjoyed it, plus how I thought each character, plot, etc fit with each other.
  2. Rate it based on the literary context behind it and critically analyze it.

It really depends on the book and what I’m looking to get out of it.

Oftentimes, YA books that I pick up, or any fiction book I pick up, really, are rated based on my level of enjoyment. I oftentimes also look deeper into whether or not the main character was well developed, if I connected with any characters, if I found that the setting was appropriate and well used for what was being discussed, etc.

Now this might mean that a lot of books I read get high ratings – and that’s fine. Why would I purposefully read something that I have no interest in? Throughout school years we are often forced to read books we oftentimes hate because they’re boring, whether in content or character or language. But when we read for pleasure, we find that we gravitate toward a certain genre or toward a certain direction. And that’s perfectly fine.

The other times that I critically analyze books, such as reading them for hidden messages, research backgrounds, history, contexts, etc, is generally only when I am researching in a classroom setting or for my own personal interest. Generally I critically analyze a book when it has great literary standing, such as many novels before the modern era (generally before the 20th century). These books have had thousands upon thousands of papers written about them from the time they are written and well beyond, and so there is much detail and theories out there to research and take a look at.

Whether books are rated simply for pure enjoyment or whether they’re rated with a critical outlook, just remember that the way you rate them is your choice. You don’t have to rate it one way or another. If you think a book deserves five stars just because, then go for it. But if someone asks you why you did so, just try to have an answer ready for them.

Also, the question that might come up is: where do you rate them? I use Goodreads as a way to find books, add them to “shelves” on the site, and also rate them as I finish them. There are thousands upon thousands of reviews to look at, so check them out! I try to not take them too much to heart unless a book is rated below 3.5 stars. But that’s to each their own!

Accompanying video: Discussion | How I Rate Books

How do you rate books? Let me know in the comments below!