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About BookBrowse's Ratings

BookBrowse's mission is to seek out and recommend the most exceptional current books. With this in mind, we've developed a simple but effective rating system for indicating the revewers' consensus about each book.

Media Reviews for a given book are calculated by averaging the ratings of all the available media reviews, (not including the "author blurbs)". You will see this at the top of most individual book pages.

This is the rating system:

5 stars Very Good to Excellent
4 stars Good to Very Good
3 stars Average
2 stars Poor
1 star Very Poor

Because we focus on recommending only the best and most interesting books, overall consensus ratings of 3 stars or less are rare. This is because, among the many thousands of books published each month, there are far too many good books deserving coverage to give space to the mediocre! But you will see many books where the range of review opinion includes less than glowing 3 star reviews (or worse).

Author blurn icon This icon indicates a review that has been contributed by a bookseller or another author (commonly known as "author blurbs"). They are not rated and do not contribute to BookBrowse's overall rating for a given book because they are usually solicited by the publisher pre-publication so that they have positive comments to print on the book jacket. Because the publishers are only going to make the positive reviews public, we do not rate them or include them in the book's overall rating because to do so would skew the results in favor of the books with the most "author blurbs".

About the Media Reviews
Whenever we add a book to BookBrowse we also gather together the reviews from established media sources that are available at the time. We summarize this range of review opinion in two ways - first we try to read the review in full (although this is not always possible) and assign the rating that we believe reflects the reviewer's overall opinion of the book; secondly, we reprint the sentence or two from each review that we feel best sums up the reviewer's opinion of the book.

Reducing each review to a few salient words and then applying an overall rating to that review, or group of reviews, has the advantage that you can skim the range of opinion in seconds. However, there is also an obvious disadvantage in that a sentence or two and a 5-point rating are a poor substitute for the usually extensive and nuanced full review. With this in mind, please use our rating scale as a rough guide to each book, and not a definitive tool.

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.