Tuesday Thingers has moved since I last took part, and is currently hosted by Wendi’s Book Corner. This week’s question:
Do you use a rating system on your blog? How do you feel about using the rating system provided on sites like Library Thing and Amazon? When looking up information on a book you are interested in, do you use the ratings provided by these sites (or similar sites) to help you make the decision on purchasing the book?
I don’t bother using a rating system on my blog nowadays. This is partly because if I don’t like a book, I’m not always sure whether it’s me or the book — I suffered some memory damage a few years ago and couldn’t read at all for a couple of years, and although I’ve recovered, I still occasionally bounce off books for reasons connected with that episode rather than either the intrinsic quality of the book or how well it matches my reading tastes. I think it’s also a lot more useful to both myself and to other people to set out what I did or didn’t like about the book, and why.
There are also occasional books where it would be unfair for me to give a star rating, because my personal rating of the book doesn’t match how I think the book might work for other people. A particular example of this would be the manga Confidential Confessions 1. I didn’t even finish it, because it simply wasn’t my thing; but I’m not the target audience and I could see that it was probably a good book for those who are. How do you give a simple star rating in those circumstances?
With looking up books on LT and Amazon, I can find the star rating useful, but it’s really the spread of ratings that’s useful rather than the average, and even that is in connection with the text reviews rather than by themselves. For example, sometimes there’s a clear love/hate divide on a book, which is useful to know as long as there’s enough information in the text reviews for me to assess which camp I’m likely to fall into.
Amazon requires you to give a star rating to post a review, and LibraryThing doesn’t. This is why I have more book reviews on LT than on Amazon nowadays.