Publishing books on Amazon has gotten me thinking (along with doing some ARCing around for others).
It’s crazy how a book dipping below 4.0 on Amazon on Goodreads feels like a death sentence. Although, that may be a bit of an exaggeration I’m sure it doesn’t help. Going off personal experience—in which I think I’m probably more of the generous readers—people automatically disqualify books under 4.0. The rating looks plain ugly. When you dip below 3.8 on Amazon and it rounds down to that 3 and a half star display—oh man, the pain!
This has led to a small difference in how I review now. If it is an indie authors book, I will almost always give a 5. 4s are possible but I won’t go below that. I won’t review it otherwise. A 3 is solid, but that is not how other people will see it. On Goodreads where some of the cruelest of people reside (almost seemingly destroying books for sport), I will give any rating if I finish the book, but only if it’s like Harry Potter. Again for an Indie, I probably won’t rate it if it’s not at least a 4. Even then, I will make my review as constructive and positive as possible. I hold a 3.70 rating average on Goodreads, which is probably on the lower side. And that’s with me only giving 4 books below a 3. The majority get 3s (which is “I liked it”). But why is it that if a book has a 3 average, 90 percent of people would skip it?
My first fantasy book, The Last Whisperer, has only 7 percent of its ratings as 1 or 2 stars. That sounds solid, right? If you framed it to me like that, I’d be thrilled. The rest—26 percent for 5 stars, 41 percent for 4 stars, 26 percent for 3 stars—still looks good. But when I frame it as a 3.7 out of 5 with the dreaded 3 and a half star icon, it looks gross.
What do you think? How do you rate books?
My solution is to write another book and give the readers no choice but to 5 star it. 😂
For those curious: My Goodreads Ratings