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September 30, 2013

Gush and Gripe: Rating Addendum

Review & Rating Addendum

Have you ever disagreed with your own past reviews and ratings? 

I found myself doing this just recently. I was perusing my Goodreads READ shelf and found some interesting reviews and ratings that I gave certain books which if I read now, I know my feedback would be totally different than what I originally shared. 

See I don't reread books, I can only count on one hand the books that I have reread in my entire life. I know that details matter, especially when one is pertaining to book series, and I will not contest that point. But to me it's more about the experience and how these stories made me think and feel at that particular time than anything else. It's like cherry popping or giving up your V-card, you cannot take the "innocence" and "naivete" of the experience back. Plus I dislike spoilers and rereading is a form spoiler for me. I know who the bad guys are, I know the conflict, I know how it's going down so the element of anticipation is ruined for me. I know some of you may disagree but I'm not here to argue, these are my personal reasons WHY I don't reread.

However I'm now rethinking my stance. See, there are so many variables that goes into reading especially if one is a hobbyist blogger like myself. It's not cut and dry like some of these publicist, authors and tour organizers might think. There's our mood, our preferred genre, our own prejudices and dispositions on certain topics, and whether or not the book we're reading is something we picked for ourselves, was recommended or was requested to be reviewed, that are in play. We're not reading textbooks, we're reading life stories! It doesn't matter if it's fictional or as fantastical as Star Wars, these are still human experiences we live vicariously through these characters every time we flip the page so one can expect that the review will be 75% emotional and 25% other stuff. Especially for unpaid blogs. Most blog reviews are as personal and as subjective as it can get and it all points to some of the variables I mentioned above. 

Case in point, two years ago if you handed me an erotica novel to read I'd probably think long and hard before I say yes not unless there's an irresistible incentive that goes with it which will benefit Talk Supe. It's partly due to my uninformed and biased ideas about the genre that made me shy away. When one mentions erotica the word porn enters my mind and I don't really like reading porn, given the choice, I'd rather watch it. Now that I have a better understanding and appreciation for the genre, I can comfortably read, enjoy and even rave about erotica. In fact some of my favorite books belong to the genre! 

In conclusion, now I'm revisiting some of these reviews that I wrote. Some of the mad gushing/griping I did for certain books I feel no longer apply and I'm almost tempted to revise and/or change the rating I gave. But that's such a tedious task and I'd rather read than edit. For now I'll leave everything as it is but I might change my tune when someone asks for a recommendation.

Thanks for taking the time to read my monthly ramblings.





25 comments:

  1. I don't revise my ratings but admittedly, my thoughts on some of the books that I've reviewed have since changed. However, unless I do a re-read I'm going to leave them as is; if not I'd never finish! My bloggy to-do list is already long enough, thank you very much! Props to you though for tweaking past reviews. :)

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    1. I actually haven't, I thought about it but like you, it's a daunting task and I'd rather keep it as is out of laziness than principle really. Hehehe

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  2. I don't change my ratings but I agree with you when I see some I know that now it wouldn't the same. We read so many new books and it allows us to have a better judgement sometimes. I have in mind historical romances. I haven't read a lot and I'm going more and more into the genre but as I'm not an expert, I usually know later after some good books that some I've read weren't that good. LOL I hope I'm clear

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    1. Same here, reading is a journey in more ways than one.

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  3. I don't re-read either, Braine. There are just too many new (to me) books I want to read, I don't want to spend time reading something I've already read, even if I enjoyed it.

    I sometimes look at my old reviews a cringe a little, but I won't change them. My reviews are like a picture of what I felt and thought when I wrote them, and even if I might have written something completely different today, that's how it was back then :)

    Lexxie @ (un)Conventional Bookviews

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    1. Yes! That's the phrase, a picture of that particular experience.

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  4. Braine with the exception of a handle full of books, mostly classics I might add, I never reread. I will sometimes right before bed pick up a beloved book and read a few passages. Once I review a book, I never look back. We grow as readers and how could our opinions not change. Look at series for instance you read book three and think OMG, this is the writer's best, it was perrrrfect and you rate it a five and then along comes book 8 are you are totally blown away and it makes that 5 look like a 3. So I do not look back, because the me from then was in love with that book.

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    1. That's a great way of looking at it, glad to know I'm not the only one.

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  5. *handful... i loathe my smartphone and its autocorrect...gads!

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  6. LOL Yes, reading is a much more productive use of your time, Braine! If you ever happen to re-read something, then yes, you could edit the review. Otherwise, I think you review how a book affected you when read it. I know for a fact - because I do re-read, though not lately - that I might feel a book is only 'meh' or absolutely stunning based on the silliest of things...like the time of month I read it! :) But I've never changed a rating...even if I kinda changed my mind about a book after, say, reading someone else's review. ;) So my vote is to keep on reading!

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    1. That makes me feel better but I think your reasons are more noble than mine, I'm just lazy.

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  7. I know what you mean. I re-read Whitney, My Love recently and my perception of the book suddenly changed! It used to be a no-questions-asked 5 star book for me, but now I have a new understanding of the book and found myself disagreeing with several of the actions there, and I reduced my rating. It was sad, but I guess we really do change!

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    1. OMG ThAT'S MY FAVORITE HIStoRICAL ROMANCE EVER!!!! I Don't think I'll ever change my mind about that one.

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  8. Hmm...lots to think about. I used to reread a lot, but not anymore. And yes, sometimes I feel sort of mortified when I see old ratings and reviews. And I have changed a few.
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts!

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  9. I SO feel you! I'm the same way! I actually saw a review I did last year and was surprised I had given it 3 stars because in my head I loved it, I thought it was at least a 4 star read but apparently at the time I didn't think it was.
    I don't reread either, but I do know how mood and just life in general has a big impact on whether I enjoy a book. So what I like at one time I may not at another time.

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    1. Good to know I'm not the only moody one around here.

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  10. Totally understand what u mean Braine and u get mad props for going back and re-rating ur reviews

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    1. Re-rating them only in my head not on anything else, too much work! LOL

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  11. Yes, this is something I've been considering, too. But there is just so much to do that unless I reread, I'll leave as is.

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    1. Exactly! I didn't go through with the changes out of laziness than principle LOL

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  12. It's an interesting discussion, but for my part, though I might be mildly curious, I'd probably choose to leave well enough alone. While some ratings might improve others might go down because mood, time and other reading experiences have set in.

    Thanks for the discussion.

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    1. Thank you for your input, I feel better about my decision knowing I'm not alone in this plight.

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  13. I rarely reread also. I don't make changes to my ratings unless after I slept on it I thought it should be a little less or a little higher. I think after reading subsequent books in a series and our love grows for the characters, authors, etc it all seems better. But you can't discount what you INITIALLY thought of the book.

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    1. True, first impressions last and it never goes away does it.

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