AAR has always provided sensuality ratings for the books we review and our guess is that readers want to keep them.  But, based on feedback from those who visit our site (the message boards speak loud and clear) and our own gut feelings, we think it’s time to update and streamline the explanation of our ratings to make them clearer and less ambiguous.  

So, with that perspective in mind, how do these float your boat?  

Kisses:  Kisses only.  There may be moderate sexual tension, but it is never described in specific terms.

Subtle:  No explicit sensuality.  Sex is described in general terms and the emphasis will likely be more on the emotions of the characters rather than physical sensation.

Warm:  Moderately explicit sensuality.  Sex is described, but often with the use of euphemisms.

Hot:  Very explicit sensuality.  Sex is described in graphic terms.

Burning:  Extremely explicit sensuality.  Books in this category are generally considered erotica and will feature the graphic depiction of sex as a main focus of the book.  These sexual acts may include those outside the sexual mainstream.

One of the challenges in defining ratings guidelines is that in essence we’re attempting to quantify the unquantifiable.  By keeping the ratings general, we think reviewers and readers will have a better shot at knowing they’re on the same page sensuality-wise.

So, what do you think?  Do you find sensuality ratings helpful?  Would a listing of a few writers falling into each category help make the definitions clearer? Do you have any suggestions about any ways we might make the definitions clearer?  Or, on the other hand, do you think we should leave well enough alone and keep them as they are now?

-Sandy AAR