Posted in Community

Rating Books

good or bad

When I review a book and give it a rating, I try to be as absolutely honest as I can. It doesn’t matter if the book was given to my as a gift from my favorite aunt, a cheap book I found at a used book store, an ARC I received for review, or something that I picked up at the bookstore. I don’t believe in blowing smoke just to win favor. I also try not to let other reader’s reviews influence my own opinions.

That being said, sometimes when I’m looking through my “read” shelf on Goodreads, I’ll see a rating and think to myself, “What was I thinking???” A little hindsight and distance from a book makes me reconsider why I rated one either high or low. Sometimes, if my current opinion of a book differs from my original rating, I’ll change it. But then, is that fair?

Maybe, my more honest feelings about a book occur directly after finishing a book when coming down off a book high. Maybe hindsight lends a more critical, and thus, harsher eye.

To other book bloggers, and anyone else who wants to weigh in, do you have a policy regarding ratings and reviews? Do you ever go back and change them? Why or why not?



Bibliophile * INTJ * LIS Graduate Student at Kent State * Mom * Social Media Junkie * BuJo Enthusiast * Planner Addict * Did I mention, I read a lot?

6 thoughts on “Rating Books

  1. People change. You’re certainly allowed to have a different opinion about a book as time passes. I have had my opinion go both ways – sometimes time helps me see more value in a book than I used to, whereas other times, I grow to have an unfavorable opinion. If you are putting your opinions on the Internet, and that opinion changes, what’s wrong with sharing that alteration? I would only suggest avoiding cruelty – for example, not saying over the top remarks such as “I was an idiot when I liked this book, and only an idiot would like it!” As long as you are not intentionally trying to insult authors and other readers, I don’t see any harm in explaining a change of heart/opinion.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m happy to read your reply here! Sometimes when I change a rating, I feel like I have to be sneaky about it, lol. I’ve never drawn attention to a change of opinion before, but maybe there’s an entire post in that…


  2. I think hindsight does lend a more critical/harsher eye. Yes, I have changed my mind and altered book reviews. The most notable one recently being my review of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. I believe I left a note in the blog stating I had altered my rating too, though, after distance from the book had made me reconsider.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I definitely think hindsight leans more towards a harsher view. There have been times when I’ve increased my rating of a book, but for the most part, I’ve downgraded my opinion. I really think that “book high” you get when you finish a book is the equivalent of rose colored glasses.


  3. As a reader and as a writer, I had ratings systems. They take complex responses and narrow them down to a number. One of the many things that drove me away from Goodreads was that I couldn’t seem to review anything without plastering a number on it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Something I struggle with is equating my written review of a book with a star (or in the case of my blog, a heart) rating. Just because I didn’t like a particular book doesn’t mean that I can’t see merit in the story and characters or talent in the writing. Sometimes I feel like I’m saying, “I really didn’t like that book, but THREE stars because I can see why others might.”

      Liked by 1 person

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