Saturday, November 19, 2011

Discussion: Reviews and Re-Reads and Ratings

On many occasions, I will read a book, love it and write a raving review of it. For a long time, that’s what I think of the book. Then I re-read the book and I begin to think otherwise. My opinion of this book changes. Not my opinion for every single book of course, just some of them.

I have read so many reviews where I go “that’s what I thought” or I read the review and I realize that I thought that but didn’t write it on my review. Then I begin thinking if I’m an easy grader which doesn’t go with the fact that my reviews are honest. I’ve raved about certain books I’ve read at the time I read it and then later, I’m thinking to myself “Really? I liked this book that much?”

I’ve thought about changing that review but I know it’s not right to do that. BUT I’m always honest with my reviews and when I change my mind about it, it seems…wrong? I’m not sure how to put this but here are two things that I want to talk about and why I feel this way:

1) Ratings: I like ratings. I use them because they help me summarize my thoughts on a novel but I’m not sure if it’s right to use them, ya know? Sometimes a 5 star book changes to a 3 or lower star book during the re-read and that just makes it all the harder to talk about that book later on.

2) Raving: I rave about books I love. I talk about them. I tell others to read them. So it feels weird when I re-read a book I raved about months (or weeks or days) ago and I don’t like it as much. I don’t know why I raved about it so much. And then a person will ask about that certain book because they heard from someone else that I loved it a whole lot, I have no idea what to say to them!

SO this goes to the topic of using ratings systems. Should I remove my numerical grading system? As NaNoWriMo comes closer, I’ve gotten a better sense of this. No one book is written the same so is it fair to judge them all on the same scale, for every single book?

What do you all think?

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