Too Many High Star Ratings?

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Recently, I made a Goodreads account (LINK HERE if you want to be my friend), and there was one thing that I particularly noticed when I started to rate the books I have read: A LOT of them were 4 or 5 star ratings. While rating these books, I felt as though I was doing something wrong. I started to scan through my shelves desperately for books I hated, so I could even out my ratings. I started to feel that maybe those books I had rated so high, couldn’t have all been so good. Surely, I couldn’t have enjoyed so many of the books I have read that much.

It was then that I realised that the reason I have so many highly rated books, is because I am a big pre-buyer researcher.

I very rarely buy a book on a whim. 99% of the time, I research the books I think sound interesting. I read the reviews on Goodreads, I look at fellow bloggers’ reviews, I watch reviews on Booktube. In other words, I very rarely go into a book blind. I make sure that I am going to enjoy a book before I pay money for it. I even like to read the negative reviews for a book, and decide whether the things that reviewer listed as problems, would be things that would bother me personally. A big example of this is the love triangle – something that many people hate in a book, but I actually often quite enjoy reading.

The fact that I don’t read all completely hyped-up books helps with this, I think. For instance, I haven’t read the Mortal Instruments, the Percy Jackson series, or Twilight – all hugely popular YA series. None of these books particularly appeal to me, and for that reason, I don’t feel any pressure to pick them up, even if that means one less series to talk to fellow book-lovers about.

This isn’t to say that I don’t read books I don’t enjoy. Despite my extensive researching, I can still end up not loving that book I thought sounded amazing. But it is less common, especially in the last couple of years – now that I don’t read books purely based on their popularity, and try to seek out lesser-known books too.

I don’t think this is a bad thing at all. I am actually pretty pleased that I manage to find and read so many books that I love. This year alone, I can think of at least ten books that I have given a five star rating so far, and many more that I have given 4 stars. And I am completely certain that there will be even more by the time the year is up.

Some of the books I have rated 5 stars this year are:
– The Hobbit – J.R.R. Tolkien
– A Court of Thorns and Roses – Sarah J. Maas
– The Winner’s Curse – Marie Rutkoski
– A Darker Shade of Magic – V.E. Schwab
– The Archived – Victoria Schwab
– Just One Day – Gayle Forman

How does anyone else find they rate books? Do you lean towards the higher ratings, or do you have a wide variety? And what 5 star books have you read so far this year? I’d love to know!

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8 thoughts on “Too Many High Star Ratings?

  1. I wouldn’t say I research books a lot before I buy them – I’m actually an impulsive book buyer – but there are very few books I buy that I don’t enjoy and most of those end up being ones I may have purchased for a book club (even then the number isn’t very high). However, I do usually tend to buy books that I’ve heard good things about first. I’m fortunate enough to work at a bookstore (unfortunate for my bank account) so I also have the ability to borrow books, which helps when it’s a book I’m not completely sure about. I’ve often wondered how I manage to almost always pick books I like – maybe I’m just lucky?

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    1. I occasionally impulse-buy but it is rare! The majority of the books I rate lower are books I had to read (not necessarily a book club but I guess it’s the same in that it isn’t a choice read). If I worked in a bookshop my bank account would suffer terribly too! Haha!

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  2. I tend to go into most of the books I read completely blind. Obviously, at some point I read the synopsis and liked it so I bought it, but when I sit down to actually read it, I don’t refresh my memory. If past Sara liked it, that’s good enough for me. So I end up having a wide variety of ratings which personally for me it’s great.

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  3. I also research books before I buy them (mostly)! My reviews are usually 4-5 stars because I research them, but I also expect books to be different. I tend to give lower ratings if it seems like its ripping off another series or author’s idea.

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  4. Same as you. I tend to research a book quiet a bit before buying it. I look up the synopsis, see the genres and read some review before I even consider buying it. I just like knowing what I am spending my money on. There are, of course, books that I don’t end up enjoying even though I thought I would. Still most of the books I read I end up either enjoying very much or loving and I mostly give 4 star ratings to them.

    The only time I don’t research a book is when a friend (whose opinion I trust) recommends me a book. Or when a new book, by an author I love, comes out – because those I am buying no matter what they are about! 🙂

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    1. I like to know what I’m spending my money on too. There’s nothing worse than paying a lot of money for a book and then hating it, not finishing it, and then getting rid of it anyway! I still have to research a book even when it has been recommended by a friend, although like you, I do have my auto-buy authors who I’ll buy a book from regardless of its reviews and synopsis.

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