Here you will find honest, intelligent manga reviews for shojo fans of all ages.

Jun 1, 2009

Review Rating Systems

So I figured it was time to explain my rating systems.

Recently added is a romance rating. I decided this might help readers determine how appropriate a book may be for any audience. The following are the romance ratings:

Cuddly - Sweet and innocent. Maybe a chaste kiss or two.
Steamy - Sizzling romance that may imply intimacy between characters. No nudity.
Lustful - Scenes of making love, or nude drawings done in a suggestive manner.
Erotic - Sexual scenes drawn with little left for the imagination. Graphic imagery.

There are three main areas I look at to determine the overall ratings for each review.
  1. Characters - if the characters are not well developed, or are too flat, it makes for a less interesting story; the relationships between the characters are essential to development, and readers should be able to relate to characters in some way
  2. Plot - how well does the story play out - does it flow smoothly, lag, leave the reader confused, go off on a tangent; is the story character driven, or led by a series of random events. There should be a definite introduction/exposition of characters, an initial conflict or obstacle the protagonist faces, a definite climax, and a resolution to the obstacle or conflict.
  3. Artwork - how well does the artist layout and design pages, frame composition, use screen tone and other design elements; do the characters have proportionate anatomy, do the backgrounds have correct perspective, and are the images themselves pleasing to look at.
As for the ratings, there are three areas that are rated - the story, the artwork, and the overall execution of the piece. The story includes both the characters and plot. This is helpful to know, since sometimes a story may have fabulously developed characters with a dull or meager plot, or it could have stereotypical flat characters with a highly intriguing or fascinating plot, and it can still receive a decent story rating.

Ratings are on a scale of 1 to 5. Here's what the following ratings mean:
I hope this helps you to understand what my thinking is when I rate titles. I love to hear your feedback too. Feel free to disagree with me, as everyone is entitled to their own opinion. I am just putting mine out there in hopes that it can help others find decent reading material in a genre that is getting less and less attention. :)


Keri Bo Beari said...

I'm cracking up at your explanations for one and two hearts...

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