Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday - Top Ten Books That Everybody Loved... Except Me

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted at The Broke and the Bookish.

This week's topic is a FREEBIE!  So I guess that means we can pick whatever topic we like.  What hasn't already been done by now?  My goodness...

This week, I think I'm going to talk about the top ten books that made me feel like I was the outsider.  So the topic is Top Ten Books That Everybody Loved... Except Me:

Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles #1)
by Marissa Meyer

Like many of the books on this list, this was one I was looking forward to.  Sci-fi Cinderella with cyborgs and androids and an evil queen who lives on the moon?  Sign me up!  Unfortunately, this book didn't really wow me... and while it wasn't bad enough to deter me from trying the rest of the series, I'm certainly not going to gush over it, either.  World-building?  Weak.  Romance?  Meh.  Plot twists I didn't see coming?  Ha!  I figured the big one out within the first few chapters.  I'm hoping the sequel is a lot better.

my review of Cinder
Dash & Lily's Book of Dares
by Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

This one looked so cute and fun, and I when I got it from the library I thought I'd be in for an entertaining read.  Little did I know that the characters would be so off-putting that I wouldn't even be able to finish.  While the premise sounded great, I just couldn't stand Lily.  Gritting my teeth and pushing through didn't help.  The urge to slap that shrill little twit was so strong that it was making me a little crazy.  I abandoned this book, and I don't even care how it ended.

my review of Dash & Lily's Book of Dares

The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle #2)
by Maggie Stiefvater

I had a tough time getting through this book.  I did enjoy the first installment in the series, but in this one, I felt like Stiefvater's writing was getting in the way.  I kept wanting something to happen, and instead all I got was more flowery prose.  It didn't help that so much of this book focused on Ronan, who is my least favourite of the Raven Boys.  I'm still on the fence after reading The Dream Thieves; I haven't yet decided if I'll continue with the rest of the series (even though I do so want to find out what happens with Gansey and the prophecy)!

my review of The Dream Thieves

The Fault in Our Stars
by John Green

Oh, no.  Just... no.  Seriously.  I don't get it.  What's so appealing about a couple of self-important teenagers who are basically emotionless, walking thesauri?  Most pretentious... book... ever.

my review of The Fault in Our Stars
If I Stay (If I Stay #1)
by Gayle Forman

I wanted to read this one so much when it came out that I actually shelled out money to buy the hardcover... and then I regretted it as soon as I read the book.  The basic idea was sound, but for a book that was supposed to be about relationships, connections, and characters, I found that the development of all three was sorely lacking.  I just couldn't care about any of the people in this story, because the author hadn't done enough to make me care.  (I think I made a comment in my review about Mia's parents' friends being some of the most interesting characters in the book.  I don't think that was the author's intent.)  The near-death experience was pretty boring, too.

my review of If I Stay

Mockingjay (The Hunger Games #3)
by Suzanne Collins

War is hell.  Yeah, we get it.  But after the first two books in this series being so full of action, I found that this one read too differently.  My lasting impression from this book was one of futility and boredom.  All I can remember is Katniss finding new places to hide, and something about taking down the government... but at a price that basically nullified the reason behind everything that had come before.  So depressing.  (I guess I prefer my endings to be happy.)

my review of Mockingjay
Obsidian (Lux #1)
by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Hey!  It's Twilight with aliens!  After hearing about how awesome this book was, and ZOMGDaemon!!!, I figured I'd better see what all the fuss was about.  Instead of a fun paranormal romance, I got one of the biggest jerks in YA and some of the worst writing I've seen in a traditionally published novel.

my review of Obsidian
Splintered (Splintered #1)
by A. G. Howard

So many of the reviews that gush over this book and series talk about some character named Morpheus.  Disclosure: I never even got that far.  I was so put off by Alyssa's ethics, the book's treatment of mental illness, and Jeb (does he want to be her friend or her father?) that I just couldn't keep going.  I stopped right after Alyssa decided it was okay to steal a wad of cash from a girl just because that girl was mean.  I don't mind characters who break the rules... but I'd prefer for them not to justify themselves with such weak excuses.

my review of Splintered
Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass #1)
by Sarah J. Maas

I was actually pretty surprised by this book and my reaction to it.  I'd heard that the story was amazing.  I'd heard that Celaena was this incredible, kick-ass heroine.  I'd heard that Maas was a masterful writer.  What I'd heard and what I experienced for myself didn't match up.  While it wasn't the worst book I've ever read, it was disappointing, given what I'd been led to expect.

my review of Throne of Glass
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer #1)
by Michelle Hodkin

This is one of the most baffling choices on this list.  Why is this book so popular?  Is it just because it has a drop-dead gorgeous cover?  It can't possibly be the story itself, because it's fairly weak.  The characters are kind of stereotypical.  We're told more than we're shown.  And Noah?  If you're going to write a bad boy, actually make him bad.  A bad reputation based on nothing does not a bad boy make.

my review of The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer

What books did you dislike while everyone else loved them?


  1. I . . . I'm just . . . YOU DIDN'T LIKE THRONE OF GLASS OR DREAM THIEVES OR CINDER? The others, maybe I understand, but those three? YOU ARE INSANE. LOL.

    I would say to try the second ToG book, even though you didn't like the first. Because I wasn't a huge fan of Throne of Glass, but when I read book 2 (Crown of Midnight) I was hooked. The series just sky-rocketed from there!

    1. You're not the first person who's mentioned that the series gets better. I might try Crown of Midnight sometime this year if I get a chance; there are so many other books I want to read, though!

  2. Good idea for a top 10! I loved Cinder, though yeah it's very predictable. That's sad to hear about Dream Thieves, since I just bought it. (No I haven't read Raven Boys yet...) I agree with you on Mockingjay, I didn't like it either. While PTSD might be realistic it wasn't fun to read about and too close to home for me. I have Obsidian on my Kindle from when it was free, but now I have no desire to read it. I hate mean romantic interests. Like all of these books are on my want to read list. I'll have to come back after I read them and discuss with you.

    I'm reading (struggling and maybe giving up) on The Name of the Wind right now. Everyone loves it, but I just can't seem to care what happens to Kvothe.

    1. I'd say to give The Raven Boys a try. I think a lot of whether you'll like those books will depend on if you're a fan of Stiefvater's writing style or not. The whole prophecy storyline has me kind of hooked... but I feel like I'm sometimes slogging through too much prose for too little payoff.

      Sorry to attack your TBR list. Oops. But I would like to hear your thoughts on some of these books once you've read them!

  3. Oh, this is music to my ears. I LOATHED Daemon Black (I mean, even his name is stupid), was terribly disappointed with Mockingjay and never understood the appeal of Cinder. I'm still undecided on the Throne of Glass series - I'm currently reading Heir of Fire but the first 2 books haven't really become my favourites. So what I'm saying is - you're not alone ;)

    My TTT for this week (fantasy heroes): http://ofdragonsandhearts.com/?p=1265

    1. It does seem like there's a surfeit of Daemons/Damons in YA paranormals. I don't think it's that common a name in real life, but I can already think of two other fictional ones off the top of my head in addition to Daemon Black.

  4. I'm with you on Fault in Our Stars! Couldn't stand that book. And everyone gushes about how beautiful and profound it is. I just didn't feel that way about it.

    1. I thought everything was kind of overdone. I probably would have found it more beautiful and profound if the prose had been simpler. It was almost like the author was trying too hard to make it beautiful and profound... and that made it neither.

  5. Ugh yeah I didn't like Mockingjay either. IT WAS SO DISAPPOINTING! But I loved the first two novels to the trilogy.

    1. Me, too; the first two were really good! Mockingjay was disappointing, but I wasn't really that surprised that I wasn't crazy about it. It's very rare that I like the final book of a series or trilogy.

  6. I think I would've been more surprised if everyone had agreed with me. I know these are popular books; that's why I chose them! :)

  7. I don't really like the sound of The Fault in Our Stars. I do think it sounds very pretentious and I have got a feeling that I won't get on with it very well. I didn't really like Mockingjay very much. I found it a huge effort to read it actually, and it was so boring compared to the other two!

    1. I wish I had known that The Fault in Our Stars was so pretentious going into it. I might have still read it (because I wanted to see what all the fuss was about) but my expectations might have been a little lower. (I'm really not a fan of pretentious teenage characters. That's one of the reasons I couldn't get through Dash & Lily's Book of Dares.)

  8. Oh yeah, I just did not like Splintered very much at all. Count yourself lucky that you stopped before it got worse, I guess. You missed out on the "love" triangle, complete with 2 douchey dudes and a capital-V Virgin who can't make up her damn mind.

    I started reading Cinder a while ago and then gave up on it because it wasn't holding my interest, but I keep seeing OMG SO GREAT reviews of it and the other books in the series so I've been meaning to try again.

    1. Ugh. That love triangle sounds abysmal. From what I read, I figured anyone would be better than Jeb. If the other guy is equally bad, I'm glad I didn't read any further.

  9. I do like Cinder but the plot twists were very predictable. I think everyone saw that last one coming from a mile away. :) I didn't really like The Dream Thieves, mostly because I was so confused. I'm not sure if I just have an oatmeal brain or if it really was complicated. I was a little disappointed with Throne of Glass and I can totally see why you were, too! It does get better in Crown of Midnight, at least as far as predictability and suspense.

    99 percent of the time, I'm a totally usual predictable reader who likes all the popular books. I can't think of any really popular book that I disliked right now!

    1. I wish I liked more of the popular books! It would make deciding what to read next so much easier.

      I can see how The Dream Thieves would seem complicated... even for a story where not much actually happens (with the overarching plot, I mean). Maybe it's because Stiefvater's got so many different characters and points of view going; sometimes it's hard to keep track of all those different storylines and subplots.