How it works:
Rating system symbol
I look at the 5 important elements of a great book; plot, characters, writing style/voice, editing, and story building. Each element is broken down into four factors, each factor is worth ¼ of a Scream, making each element as a whole worth 1 Scream.
I rate using a 1 – 5 scale, sometimes you may see a 6 which is pretty amazing, and rare.
Maybe one day you will see a 10, that is as unlikely as finding the the door to The Realm of Athenaeum.
- Was the Narrative Hook engaging?
- Did the Plot/Story have steady pace?
- Were the Plot Points solid?
- Was there Rising and Falling Action?
- Did the Characters have believable features and traits?
- Did the Author convey how the character was feeling without telling the reader outright?
- Were the Characters consistent; both in dialogue and mannerisms?
- Were the Characters dimensional?
- Were the Characters memorable?
- Writing Style/Voice
- Was the Writing Style consistent?
- Was the Diction and Connotation suitable to the book’s subject matter?
- Was the Author’s Voice well-honed/developed?
- Were the Sentences and Phrases rhythmic and fluid?
NOTE: I expect books to have errors and I do not expect perfection. In this part of the rating system I automatically assume that I will find errors. Below you will find a list of things that distract me from the story.
- Were there any glaring issues with content? Did identifying character markers change without an explanation? This is a huge pet peeve of mine.
- Were the errors numerous?
- Were punctuation and grammar used correctly? Spelling errors or misuse of words? I am not the grammar police, and I don’t always know where to place a comma or when to use a semicolon…but if I get hung up on a sentence or paragraph trying to make it read right, it isn’t something I can overlook.
- Non-Fiction: Were facts accurate? Fiction: Was the supplied information consistent, and logical to the story?
- Reading Experience
- Did the book have a good hook? Did it draw me in and make me fall in love with or root for the character?
- Was the conflict riveting? Did the character change as he/she worked to resolve the conflict? Does the reader have opportunity to experience change and personal growth from reading about the character’s struggles?
- Was there resolution to the conflict(s)? If the book was ended with a cliff-hanger, was enough of the story resolved to satisfy the reading experience?
- At the end of the book, when every last word has been devoured, what is the overall emotional reaction, and first thoughts about the entire reading experience?
A special thank you to Author Allyn Lesley for being my sounding board while I was formulating the rating system. Thank you SO MUCH!!