Review ratings are subjective. What one reviewer sees as a five star read, the next reviewer might see as only a three star. That’s because all reviewers are readers first, and we like what we like. I thought it might be appropriate for me to tell you what I like and how I, personally, rate books.
The only books I really don’t like are boring ones. I want a great story that moves forward without too many distractions. I don’t like having to flip back through previous pages because the flow of the story is poor. I’m reasonably smart, if I lose track of who did what and when, I expect other readers will too. I have yet to read a genre that I didn’t like…romance in all it’s forms, mystery, suspense, sci-if, paranormal, urban fantasy, horror…I like it all. Except erotica. A well written sex scene in a romance adds significantly to the sense of intimacy between characters, but when there’s too much, I just start skipping pages. It gets boring.
So, how to I determine what rating to give a book? Keep reading.
5 Stars…This is the very best books, in my opinion, books I will re-read often and soon. Transcendence, by Shay Savage, Wallbanger, by Alice Clayton, and Sno Ho, by Ethan Day are all books I re-read immediately. I read the last page, flipped back to page one and read it again. That’s a five star read to me. There are many others, but it takes a while to post all the links, so I’ll stop there.
4 Stars…These books are also very good, books I will re-read at some point. A lot of great series books hit here. Diana Gabaldon, E.L.James, J.R. Ward, Jordan Castillo Price, Charmaine Harris, Jeanine Frost, Faith Hunter, Mike Faricy, Shay Savage, Anna Butler, Josh Lanyon, Marie Force, Christie Craig, Kristen Ashley, Cynthia Sax are all great authors with amazing series and stories. I know I missed some favorites. Dang. I have a lot of favorites!
3 Stars…Good books. I might not re-read them for various reasons. Some might be too long or complex, some might just be good but aren’t going to haunt and stay with you for days. I don’t tend to re-read books that make me cry. I don’t tend to re-read nooks that make me go back to a previous section to figure out what’s happening. Many reasons, but I enjoyed the book a lot.
2 Stars…This is where the trouble starts. I have always finished a 2 star book, but I struggled with some aspect of the story. Beautiful writing with a crappy plot, a great plot with sub-par writing, editing, formatting, continuity and flow are going to get stuck here. But there was something there that kept me hooked long enough to finish the book. I will generally try to explain. What bothered me might not bother you at all.
1 Star…You won’t see many of these from me. I’ve gotten pretty good at recognizing books that I’m not going to like at all. Most of these books, I will never finish.
Okay. That’s it. Other reviewers will have different opinions about how they rate books. Some reviewers will never review a book they can’t give a top rating. It’s all subjective. This is just my opinion.