Adjusting Downward

Goodreads has a 5-star rating system. I find it pointless to give a book a less than 3-star rating. If you don’t like the book that much, why keep reading it? (Although I did give 1-star in a fit of pique to a SF novel a few years back, likely because acquaintances raved about it.)

If a book gets 3-stars that’s my way of saying it was okay, and I liked it enough to finish it. 4-stars mean I liked it enough to recommend. 5-stars mean it was great, and I hope to reread it some day.

But over Christmas I just finished reading Iain Banks’ A Song of Stone. It was so unenjoyable, but he’s a writer I like so much that I couldn’t drop the book.

So now 2-stars means this book stinks but I finished it out of brand loyalty.

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10 responses to “Adjusting Downward”

  1. asakiyume says :

    LOL, your explanation actually did make me laugh out loud. I’d love to know what the book was that you gave one star to in a fit of pique. Maybe you can email me off line if it’s too touchy to mention it in public.

  2. Gord Sellar says :

    Ha, this made me go back and look at how I’ve rated books on Librarything, and it turns out I rarely rate anything under 3 as well.

    (Occasionally, for things I couldn’t get into and felt it was likely to be a waste of time to read on, I gave a 1 or a 2, or even once, a half-star for something that was just horrible. 2.5 seems to be for books I read all the way through, trying to figure out the hype, but wasn’t impressed by; or books that have okay or good writing, but are badly collected. Short story collections, really… sometimes each story is fine, but they don’t belong in a collection together, or in the order arranged, or whatever…)

  3. asakiyume says :

    When I started using Goodreads, I had no idea! So I honestly gave books I quite liked, but that were flawed in certain ways, three stars. Books by friends even. Now I kind of quail when I think about it, but ehhh. Nowadays, though, I probably would never give any book by an up-and-coming writer less than four stars because it seems, yeah, like a slap in the face. But if the writer is super duper famous/successful, and my rating isn’t going to make much difference, then I’m less concerned.

    It’s a weird dynamic.

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  1. My Purely Reactive Goodreads Rating System | 10 Bad Habits - March 7, 2017

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