Does this sentence sound unnatural?

The journalist has read the book, written a review and rolled the dice.

I know rolling the dice means to "take a chance". But I am not sure if giving something a score from 1-6 is referred to as rolling the dice, so I wonder if there are other idioms I could have used instead? Suggestions are welcome!

  • 6
    "Rolling the dice" definitely does not mean "give something a score between 1 and 6". Not at all. In addition, a dice roll is random (that's the point) so you've got metaphorical dissonance between that concept and a book critic reading a book, considering it, and deliberately giving it a specific rating. Not to mention that book reviews are usually one out to four, five, or ten, but rarely or never six.... I don't think there's a specific verb or idiom for rating something within a specific range, other than the free-range rate, review, score, grade et al.
    – Dan Bron
    Apr 12, 2016 at 21:04
  • Do you want an idiom for assigning a score around 1-6? Time to bust out the ol' Likert scale...
    – user662852
    Apr 13, 2016 at 12:32

1 Answer 1


If the important part is giving a score or opinion perhaps ...

The journalist has read the book, and nailed his colours to the mast by publishing his review.

nail your colours to the mast (British & Australian)

to publicly state your opinions about a subject Nobody knows which way he's going to vote because he has so far refused to nail his colours to the mast. — Cambridge Idioms Dictionary, 2nd ed.

  • 1
    This is a nice, fairly fresh metaphor. OP: Tired metaphors are easy to come by, but fresh ones are valuable, are hard to get, and seldom come but from the pens of good writers. @k1eran has done you a good turn. Now, if the book reviewed regards armored tactics on the Eastern Front during World War II, then nautical images might not work; but otherwise, I recommend k1eran's mast.
    – thb
    Apr 12, 2016 at 22:34

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