Do DNFs deserve a rating?
To finish or not to finish that is the question.
Up until last year I would plow through the worst books and sadly some have stuck to my memory in all their horrific glory more than they could ever deserve. What did all those bad baaad novels have in common? They got a 1-star rating from yours truly. Now, some might say there are books that only deserve zero stars, but I'd like to disagree. If someone sits down and manages to finish a whole book this alone is worth 1 star. The rest is a bonus which an author should definitely aspire to, but let's not digress.
The point is that if a book simply doesn't work for you for whatever reason and you then decide to call it quits after, say, four chapters or maybe 50 pages, how do you rate it? Unfortunately places like Amazon or Goodreads do not offer a DNF option so in lack of it the most obvious choice has to be handing out one measly star. Why? Because if you cannot bring yourself to read straight through to the very last page the book obviously doesn't deserve praise.
Did. Not. Finish.
This raises yet another important question. Should we even rate a book if we never made it to its last page? After all, things might go uphill after chapter 7 and what we felt warranted only 1 star in the beginning might actually climb a few steps to - let me take a deep breath - an unbelievable 3 stars. Of course, in my experience more books will start out promising enough that you could almost believe you'll end up giving it 5 stars only to end up as average for you whilst books who are off to a rather, shall we say, slow start, rarely manage to transform into a true literary gem.
Either way, the moment you decide to quit reading is also the moment you have made up your mind about the book. And let's be honest, even if we did not finish it, we do judge the few pages we've read. So in all fairness the most logical thing might even be to say a certain novel's first half deserves only 1 star and the rest is better left unread because of it.
Oh my star! Singular.
How do rate books you did not finish? Do you give them no stars at all or do you resort to 1 star as I do? Even more so, do you think a book you never finished should consequently not get a rating at all?