One of the biggest things that define a book is the rating that it gets on Goodreads , Amazon or even on your favourite book blogger or booktuber's review. It seems like a pretty solid system but can we trust it? Everyone will read a book differently to the next person and we all have our own opinions and experiences that will have an effect on our liking or disliking of the book , so how can we trust other people's rating? What if reading the rating is stopping us from reading books that we could love , just because we're afraid of not liking them?
What is a star rating anyways? Everyone has a different definition of what each star means so for one person 3 stars could be a really good book but for another it could be a not so great one. Sometimes I can't even figure out what rating I should give a book based on my personal system!
For me there's a list of books that go well beyond 5 stars but there's no way of showing that. If a book leaves me with an emotional connection to the story , I put it on my special 5+ list but again , this is different for everyone! I'm definitely guilty of avoiding books because of a bad rating and it frustrates me to think that I could've missed out on an amazing story.
I've noticed that a lot of people mark a book down because of a character who acts in a way that's not right for example being racist, sexist or manipulative which I never really understood. I understand that you may not think that things like that should be promoted but in my opinion it's a character trait that should change your opinion on the character not the book. If there was a murderer in a book , I wouldn't give it less stars because I don't think murder should be promoted. Of course if it makes you uncomfortable , you didn't enjoy the book as much so mark it down but I don't really agree with thoroughly enjoying a book and marking it down because one character was discriminating in some way.
The point I'm trying to make is should we be so trusting of book ratings when everyone has different ways of rating that you might not necessarily agree with? I'd love to hear what you have to say about this in the comments!