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The Bookmark Podcast S3 E6: Do ratings reflect the merits of books?

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Comparative rankings can make or break whatever they're ranking. In this week's podcast we debate the merits of using the star system for books. This may also be the "secret math episode."

5-Star ratings

In this episode we're mainly talking about the use of Goodreads' 5-star ratings. There's a whole list on the site dedicated to books with low ratings that are high quality reads. A lot of books deemed "classics" are on this list such as The Scarlet Letter and The Taming of the Shrew. Is this because raters were forced to read these books in school and therefore couldn't enjoy them as much as they might have?

While we try to be honest and accurate in our personal ratings, we acknowledge ratings can give us false expectations. Chris, for example, put off reading a book that looked good to him for years because of its rating. Had he ignored the rating, he could have enjoyed it years in advance.

Let's all read Mrs. March

book cover Mrs. MarchAutumn's update on this "All Read" includes a couple reveals as she's about halfway through the novel. First, in reference to the other mentions of The Scarlet Letter in this episode, she thinks there's something going on with the red "A" on the cover of Mrs. March. Autumn can't quite tell what time frame the book takes place in. Is it the past? The future? The present?

Here are the books we discussed this time:


What’s Next?

The next episode of The Bookmark drops Oct 25!

Meet your Hosts

Autumn Friedli, Chris Blocker and Miranda Ericsson relish talking books with recurring readers and special guests from the library and community in The Bookmark.

Thanks for listening! We love to hear from listeners.

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