Search on ....
Subscribe to SLJ
100 Scope Notes
Inside 100 Scope Notes

The Amazon Star Bar vs. The Book Review

Oh, man. I believe the expression is “oh no they didn’t”. Have you read this article yet?

Amazon Star The Amazon Star Bar vs. The Book Review

(via TechCrunch)

It points to recent research from The Harvard Business Review showing that the cumulative star rating at Amazon is as accurate as reviews from professional critics.

While the research is focused on books for adults, there are some interesting points to consider.

share save 171 16 The Amazon Star Bar vs. The Book Review
About Travis Jonker

Travis Jonker is an elementary school librarian in Michigan. He writes reviews (and the occasional article or two) for School Library Journal and is a member of the 2014 Caldecott committee. You can email Travis at, or follow him on Twitter: @100scopenotes.


  1. Hey Travis,

    Very interesting, indeed. But really I think children rely much more on recommendations from folks they know and trust – friends, teacher, librarians, parents. So crowd-sourcing is powerful, but for kids it’s local that’s important.

    Kristin MacLean talks about some of this in her research and work. See:–s-books-in-a-digital-age.html

    Thanks for sharing a thought-provoking article!

    Mary Ann

    • Travis says:

      Thanks for your comments Mary Ann, and I agree. But what about the librarians, teachers, and parents who are buying the books?

      • Mary Ann says:

        I don’t think that the Amazon star rating impacts librarians’ purchases very much. But the idea of crowd sourcing does impact librarian purchases, whether it’s Goodread ratings or features such as popularity rankings on Titlewave.

        What I appreciate about blogs or Goodreads is the opportunity to develop relationships. It takes Macleans notions of recommendations from people you know and broadens it into a bigger network.

Speak Your Mind