The Blog Squad: A Blogger Collaboration - Part 7

We are a group of three book bloggers situated on different continents but brought together by our love for books and a penchant for talking about them. We’ve joined our forces to create a collaborative series of posts about book blogging and we hope you’ll enjoy the discussions.


Book Ratings - what’s your system? (As in, what are your star rankings - what do they mean? Is 3 stars good or bad?)

I pretty much follow the Goodreads rating system since that is where I started rating and reviewing books in the first place.

 ★☆☆☆☆ - Did not like
★★☆☆☆ - It was Okay
★★★☆☆ - I liked it
★★★★☆ - I really liked it
 ★★★★★ - It was amazing

There’s definitely not enough stars between 3 and 5 mot days, but for me a 3 star rating does mean I liked it and therefore it IS a good rating. I will give half ratings when a book really is better than a full star rating but isn’t quite at the next level but obviously Goodreads doesn’t accept half star ratings so I either have to round up or down for those.

My rating system is kind of similar to the Goodreads rating system with a couple of changes. For one thing I use hearts instead of stars but like Goodreads I don’t really use half ratings much. Sometimes I do mention when a book is somewhere halfway between ratings. 

1 heart - Did not like it 
2 hearts - Not for me 
 3 hearts - It wasn’t bad 
4 hearts - An enjoyable read 
5 hearts - It was AMAZING! 

 But 3 hearts doesn’t always mean the same. It could either mean “it wasn’t bad” as in “This was actually better than I expected” or it could mean “It wasn’t bad” as in “I expected so much more and this did not deliver but I’m gonna be a nice little butterfly and give it 3 hearts” #bookreviewerproblems

What things make you lower your rating for a book?

Well this one is a tough one… For me it’s hugely subjective on a per-book basis.

 The thing is that I like to rate books as soon as I finish them so I capture my FEELINGS while reading and not necessarily make it all about technicalities. I’ve rated a couple of books that had a few glaring issues relatively highly because I just enjoyed them so much! And it’s the feelings I get from books and their ability to transport and entertain me that I’m looking for.

 A few things that will make me bring down my rating MIGHT be:
 - Poor writing (also including cheesy, eye roll worthy dialogue). 
- Flat, cookie cutter-like characters.
-  Poor editing - spelling mistakes, grammar issues and poor editing in general can really throw me out of my reading zone! If the book is keeping me entertained and enthralled though, this isn’t necessarily a deal breaker.

 If I absolutely cannot connect to a book in any way AND it’s poorly written then I might DNF it and in that case it gets one star. One star is a really bad rating.

Ok hard question as this mostly depends on the book. But regardless of the story and genre, some things I really hate are bad grammar, characters drawn and cut out from cardboard, bad/ improper representation of any group, and plot holes so huge I could build a fort in them.

 Now thing is I don’t like cliches and tropes either. But of late I’ve realized that some authors work with tropes but write so well that they’re actually enjoyable! So I give tropes and cliches a fair chance before judging them!

Have you ever looked back on ratings and reviews and wanted/needed to change them?

I don’t think that there’s a book blogger around that wouldn’t say yes to this one! However I generally try to only change ratings and/or reviews when I re-read books so that I know that this is coming from the right place. 

 There might be books that I have enjoyed more or less at a particular time in my life however reading tastes and ratings are so individual and (mine especially) are quite instinctive rather than based on a technical system. There’s no wrong rating, just like there’s no wrong opinion.

Actually I haven’t felt the need to change my ratings or reviews that much. Come to think of it, I’ve probably just changed my ratings one time so far on Goodreads. But if I did feel like I want to change a rating / review, I wouldn’t hesitate to do it. We all have different opinions on things and sometimes our own opinions might change over time depending on how we look at the things. I think it’s totally cool to respect that and say “So yeah, I used to love strawberry sundae but of late I’d rather go with mango.” Bad comparison! But what I’m trying to say is if you find that you do not enjoy a book you loved three years ago, it’s totally cool to go change the rating and say so!

If you'd like to read my answers, hop over to their collab posts! : 

We hope you’ve enjoyed Part 7 in our series of discussion posts! Please talk to us and let us know YOUR answers below. 
What do you think of our responses? If you have any specific questions you’d like us to address in the future, please let us know in the comments section below. Stay tuned for next week’s questions!


  1. I've never looked back on a review/rating and thought I needed to change it, but I don't think I've reread any of the books I've reviewed on my blog yet. Sometimes my opinion changes after a reread and maybe at that point I might want to change my opinion - it might be a fun post to re-review a book you've already rated and see how things have changed!

    1. You're so lucky! Good point, though.
      That's actually an awesome idea! I might do that...

  2. I always love to see how other people do their ratings! I typically do three stars as an "eh. it was alright." I'm known for rating books four or five stars though, because I always learn something about what to do or not do when I'm writing from them xD

    audrey caylin

    1. I like to see that too! And good point!
      Thanks for stopping by, Audrey :)

  3. To me a 3 star is a good rating, 4 is exceptional and 5 is like, awesomesauce, one of my favorite books ever. And like Di said I go for the feel I get from a book, my thoughts after reading it, how it affected me- my thoughts if I reread two years later might be different, but I'm going with how I feel about it when I finish.

    1. That's a good way to do it :)
      Yeah same.
      Thanks for stopping by, Greg!

  4. Part 7!!! Thanks ladies for being so darn AWESOME to collab with!