Star Ratings- The CAWPILE Rating System

I have never been someone who had much confidence in a star rating system. Stars ratings are so subjective and mean something different to everyone. That said, I know that many people appreciate seeing a star rating as a quick indication of whether or not someone would recommend a book. That is why I have decided to start using the CAWPILE rating system for my reviews.

This system was created by G at Book Roast, and no one can explain how it works better than G herself, so I will post the video below.

I will try to summarize the rating system here to give you an idea!

CAWPILE is an acronym that stands for:

  • Characters
  • Atmosphere/Setting
  • Writing Style
  • Plot
  • Intrigue
  • Logic/Relationships
  • Enjoyment

Each of the books that I read will be rated on a scale of 1 to 10 in each of these seven categories. The total will then be divided by seven. Wherever that number lands on the following scale is the star rating that the book will receive:



Rating: 1 out of 5.


Rating: 2 out of 5.


Rating: 3 out of 5.


Rating: 4 out of 5.


Rating: 5 out of 5.

I also plan to let you know the score that I gave the book in each of the categories, so that you can get a better idea of where my rating is coming from. I love this system because it is more concrete and logically than the traditional way of assigning star ratings. I also think that implementing this system will help me to read more critically, as it will encourage me to keep all seven categories in mind while I am reading.

I would love to know what you think about the CAWPILE rating system!

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37 thoughts on “Star Ratings- The CAWPILE Rating System

  1. I love this idea! Thank you for sharing! I’m going to have to try and implement this into my reviews it seems much more objective. I usually base mine off of the Goodreads rating so that it reflects that in my reviews. However that one is not very broad and often doesn’t REALLY reflect how I feel.

  2. I’ll be interested to see how this works for your reviews and if rating it this way would come close to what your old way would have been. It might be interesting to compare the two ratings for a while? My only question is about each category having the same weight in every book. Definitely keep us posted!

    1. That an interesting idea! I think I will include both my gut rating and the CAWPILE rating for awhile to see how they compare.

      I was also thinking about the categories having equal weight. I’m sure it is a system I will tweak the more I play with it.

      I will continue to talk about the rating system and write an update in the future about how it is working for me!

  3. I sometimes use CAWPILE to rate my books, but I am starting to move away from it because I find that I often disagree with the rating. It helps me think about it from a standpoint other than just my overall enjoyment, which I really appreciate, and I do think I have become more critical of a reader since then. I think it’s a fantastic method. It just doesn’t work with my personality.

  4. Interesting. I’d definitely be interested in a follow up post after you use this system for a while to hear your thoughts on ease of use and if you think it’s adding depth to your ratings.

  5. I’ve just started using this system and it has made my life SO MUCH EASIER, especially when it comes to those books where you’re really indecisive on how many stars to give it.

  6. Oh, wow, this is a really interesting system. I’ve never heard of it, but I might try it out in 2021? It seems to give a more accurate final rating!

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