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Wednesday, December 09, 2009

wow, what a bitch

Turns out when I give anonymous star reviews, I'm a real asshat.

Our library has a five star system for its online audio books. For each online book, there are two lines of stars: "average rating"and "my rating" and I've been using it for my own purposes. I'm not clicking to promote anyone's work, or tell the world my opinion, but to keep track which books I've listened to and whether or not I liked the damn thing. Memory failing, don't you know.

I've listened to a gazillion books and given out only a few five star ratings. Most of the time I'm clicking two, three stars---with a fair number of one stars.

It's a huge difference from my usual instincts for star rating--kind of a reverse, actually. (I give lots of fives in the real world but that's in part because I don't go rating the one star books. Me 'n Harriet Klausner.) I think it's because the author is unlikely to come across my rating at our public library. And I doubt other library listeners pay attention to the average star ratings, only because I don't pay attention to them when I'm picking a book from that source.

The strange thing is that in both cases, the star rating in public and in private, I feel like I'm being honest.

Maybe it's because there are practically nothing but "new to me" books at the library. I'm always trying authors whose work I don't know.

Maybe it's because I don't think about the person behind the books when I click at the library and in the other rating world, I always do. That doesn't make the rating less honest, just adds another dimension to the book, one I can't usually ignore. (I can for those hyper-famous people)

2 comments:

  1. Glad you never rated MY books. Sheesh.

    I didn't know you were looking for me!

    I still faithfully check your blog a couple of times a week, though, making sure you're okay.

    Thanks for looking, though. It means a lot.

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  2. The lead-in to this post led me to think that someone -- like an author -- had found your ratings and had given you hell for them! Wouldn't that have been funny, someone so thin-skinned as to be tweaked by an anonymous rating at a library? Reminds me of that thread about the author (Alice Hoffman, was it?) who would fly off the handle at the slightest criticism of her work.

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