the Pharmacist Mortar Rating System

As pharmacists, we use mortars for compounding which basically means we put medication into different things like lotions, powders, creams, etc. I have a glass mortar which is typically used for lotions. So, how does this relate to my rating system?

For me, making a good book is like compounding a good lotion; you have to get the ingredients just right. Lotions by definition are water based so they can’t be oily on the skin. The lotion can’t be too liquid or too pasty, it has to have an exact amount of medication and we usually put in something to make it smell good. Just like a book, for me it has to have a good balance; great characters, who are not just compelling but have some amount of character development, the plot should be interesting, however, the book should have enough background information to keep me interested and the pace can’t be too slow either. When you mix all these things, you get a great, creamy, good smelling lotion aka an awesome book.

200px-PharmacistsMortar.svgnot enough mixing in the mortar, this thing is so hard it can’t even be called a cream or lotion, foul smelling; horrible book, I did not like it at all!


can rub this on the skin but too pasty or oily for it to be pleasant; the book was ok. I did not necessarily like it but did not completely hate it either.

200px-PharmacistsMortar.svg200px-PharmacistsMortar.svg200px-PharmacistsMortar.svgI can rub this on and it takes away some of my itching but not all of it. Also, it leaves my skin feeling a bit oily; a good book which I liked. Nice, entertaining read although not the best.


wow, this stuff is great and smells good! just enough mixing of all ingredients. satisfied.; I really liked this book. Great story with some minor defects.

200px-PharmacistsMortar.svg200px-PharmacistsMortar.svg200px-PharmacistsMortar.svg200px-PharmacistsMortar.svg200px-PharmacistsMortar.svgmana of the gods. this stuff is so great, it’ll take 5 years of your skin, get rid of any puffiness and itchiness and it has this great smell to it.; I loved this book. Either for the emotion it evoked in me, the compelling characters, the great plot or all of the above, this is one of my favorites.

Of course, for me, the rating system can be tricky at times. This does not necessarily mean that all books I rate 4 mortars, for example, I like for the same reasons. Each book is different, it’s a whole other world which must be judged solely but its content and cannot be compared to other books. To use a classic example it’s like comparing oranges and apples. Or if it is in the same genre different kinds of oranges (no two books, even the same genre are the same). Although in the book world we give ratings to try and gauge overall performance I will like or dislike books for different reasons.


If you’ve read this feel free to post your thoughts on this or any post. I hope I will get to have a good exchange of thoughts and ideas with others!