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An intermittent blog

Oh My Stars

From now on, I'm going to append this statement to every review I write in a forum (such as Amazon or Goodreads) that requires me to select a number of stars.

***A word about stars***
I can't tell you how much I dislike stars. Like the grades I hated to give when I taught creative writing, they seem to mean something, but what that something is differs in each instance from all others. Why is one book a four for me instead of a five? It could be anything from a few uncaught typos, an anachronism or two, or an ineffective tense shift to a bit of redundancy or a "fact" of the fiction that contradicts my own sense of "fact." It could be I am reading in and responding to a genre that is not among my preferred ones.

What is a five for me? Likely anything by Toni Morrison, Jose Saramago, Louise Erdrich, Marilynne Robinson, Sherman Alexie. A book not only well written but precisely (invisibly) edited. A book I keep thinking about, because I can't stop thinking about it.

Either four or five stars means I found a book well worth my time and think you might, too.
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