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Monday, January 21, 2013

Why I Cannot Rate Books on Goodreads or Other Places

As I struggle through report cards (also known as the-grid-with-a-thousand-boxes) I realize why I have given up on recording the books I read on Goodreads, (and rating them) and why I am unable to rate books using any kind of logical system.  You see folks, as a teacher in today's world, I already have to rate EVERYTHING else.

 Seriously, you would not believe it if I told you, so I won't bother boring you with the details. But really, REALLY, I have to rate almost every student paper I see on a 5 point scale.

And you know, it's really nice to just read a book and ENJOY it, and not have to think about if I feel if the author was ADVANCED in their storytelling, PROFICIENT, BASIC, BELOW BASIC or (heaven forbid) FAR BELOW BASIC.  It is a gift I treasure--just to go with the author on their journey into their book.  Yes, there are some adventures I like better than others, there are some that resonate with my heart more than others. But honestly, getting to read for pleasure is just so filled with PLEASURE, I find myself unable and unwilling to assign it a number.

I kind of wish I could.  It would be so much easier for me if I could look back on the books I have read with some sort of organized template and think, "Ah yes, I gave it four and a half stars for these reasons......"  and I kind of envy the folks that can do this.  But for me, NOT having to rate my reading choices is perhaps the best thing about my personal reading time.

How about you?  Do you make reading rating systems work for you....or not?




Natalie Aguirre said...

I only rate the books I can rate 4 or 5 on Goodreads. As an aspiring author, I don't want to give a book a bad rating. I just don't list it if I didn't like it.

I like to list my books on Goodreads as a way to connect with other readers and writers. I can understand why you're sick of rating things though.

Hilary Wagner said...

I have trouble giving bad reviews. Being an author, I know how every book is an author's "baby". If you can't say something nice.... :)

Julie Dao said...

Ditto what Natalie said... I only give stars to books when I want to give them 4 or 5. Anything less and I just leave it unstarred. I like to write a little blurb of my opinion on every book I read, but other than that, I just like to enjoy it like you!

Kelly Polark said...

I don't love rating books unless I do love it. So I usually only give 4 or 5 star if I rate at all, and if I have time. I know a writer worked hard, so it's hard to knock the book!
I do love reading just to read and enjoy.

Kelly H-Y said...

So true! I only rate if I liked the book.

Myrna Foster said...

I only bother rating the ones I love. The ratings are more for me than they are for anyone else, so there isn't any reason to dwell on the ones I don't like.

I don't have to grade my preschoolers. If I did, I'd probably feel the same way that you do about it.

Jackee said...

I used to rate books but haven't for the last several years. I think it's a very arbitrary system and none of us are qualified to give gold stars (or the lack thereof!) to part of someone's heart and soul they put into a book. It also takes time and if I'm going to spend the time to review a book, it is going to be with my words in the comment section not in "grid with a thousand boxes" (love that!) format. Thanks for the honest post! Good luck with the grade books!