Top Ten Tuesdays: Books I Thought I’d Like MORE/LESS Than I Did

This meme is hosted by The Broke and The Bookish.

Big shout out to The Perpetual Page-Turner whose artwork is featured in this post!

It would be so easy to use this post to simply list my favourite books of all time, but that would be a cop out. So instead, this is a post about 5 books that were better than I expected they would be and 5 books that were less awesome than I expected they’d be. I am being completely subjective here, this is about my reaction to these books, nothing more. So here goes, in no particular order…

5 books I thought I’d like LESS than I did:

1. Lost Voices by Sarah Porter
This blew me away. The best book about what it means to be human that I have ever read and there’s basically no human characters in it. And I only read it because I got a free e-ARC. (I now own it in hardback.)

2. The Host by Stephanie Meyer
I found The Twilight books boring, sue me. And for the first half of this one I didn’t get the awesomeness of what I was reading, and then I got it. I totally cried towards the end.

3. The Eternal Ones by Kirsten Miller
Panned in all the reviews I read. I put up with the tinsy tiny print of the paperback version for all 411 pages. Enough said.

4. The Catalpa Tree by Denyse Devlin
I thought twice about reading this because of the twisted synopsis, but I’m glad I read it.

5. Wanderlove by Kirsten Hubbard
Unknown author, during the first few scenes the main character’s immaturity made me squirm and then… I had to stay up all night. Really good!

5 books I thought I’d like MORE than I did:

1. Kill Me Softly by Sarah Cross
This book had the potential to be mind-blowing – fairytale characters, curses? And the storyline was pretty epic, but unfortunately I was not swept off my feet.

2. First Comes Love by Katie Kacvinsky
Some great observations about love and living, but I was bored reading it. This was not the sexy romance novel I had been expecting.

3. Starling by Lesley Livingston
I gave up 2/3rds of the way through. I just didn’t care enough about the characters or their world to bother. And yet there was myth, magic, boarding school and a romantic interest. Weird.

4. Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater
I had heard so many good things about this book, but it got sent to the charity shop around the same time I finished the last page and I never read on in the series. But I still like werewolves thanks to Annette Curtis Klause.

5. The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce
I kept waiting for the humour and upbeat message the synopsis implied was eventually coming. I bought it in hardback. But it was all a lie, what I got was passages on blisters, tumours and human greed – misery in a book. No wonder it was nominated for the Booker Prize.

28 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesdays: Books I Thought I’d Like MORE/LESS Than I Did

  1. The Host was the same for me! I didn’t like Twilight very much and so when I got the Host as a gift one Christmas I was a bit sceptical. But I read it and was amazed by how much I liked it. A little long winded in some places but a fantastic story! I liked the movie too.

    Shiver – I didn’t even finish it.

  2. I know exactly what you mean about The Host.
    I must have been stuck in the first third of the book for over 2 weeks before I finally got into the book. Then I loved it. Since then I have reread it at least 3 times and shoved it into the hands of twenty unhappy friends. Forcing them to read it.

    Thanks for sharing!
    My TTT

  3. Couldn’t agree with you more about how the Man Booker Prize committee seem to have a requirement that books cannot be great works of fiction unless they are completely depressing. Although both The Sisters Brothers and The Teleportation Accident are exceptions to that rule…I think?

    I was thinking of trying Harold Fry, but I think you’ve convinced me that perhaps it’s better off unread by me.

    • Nope, the Teleportation Accident was equally horrible – the main characters were all narcissists (one of whom complete ignored the letter he received from a scared Jewish professor, during WW2). It was a horrible commentary on human selfishness. I haven’t read Sisters Brothers but I’ve heard good things about it. Maybe I’ll try that next off the Booker list? 🙂

  4. I enjoyed Shiver and the rest of the Mercy Falls series, it wasn’t the most amazing thing I’ve ever read, but I liked it.

    The Host has been on my TBR since it was released, and I still haven’t even gotten to it yet – I guess I should try to soon, no?

    Thanks for stopping by my TTT post earlier. Happy reading.

  5. I am really surprised to see The Host on so many peoples lists!! I guess I just assumed that since Twilight was just so…. well you know… that The Host would be equally awful. I guess maybe I’m wrong!! Wanderlove has been on my TBR forever. I really want to read it soon!!

    Thanks for stopping by My TTT

  6. Aw, that’s a shame about SHIVER. I’ve had it in my TBR for a while so I think I’ve pretty much got not expectation, but hype seems to set me up for disappointment more often than not.

  7. Def agreed about the Host, though I was slightly more captivated before the middle of the book. Meyer had me almost the whole time on that one.

  8. I just finished The Host and totally have to agree with you! I am not a Twilight hater but I am not a fan so I was surprised how much I liked The Host. I am slightly upset there are talks of a sequel though because THERE IS AN ENDING.

  9. I definitely wasn’t a fan of Shiver either. It was too boring and melodramatic for me. I’ve heard The Scorpio Races by the same author is really good though, so I’ll probably read that one instead of continuing the Shiver series.

  10. I wanted to like Shiver really, really badly. But though the writing was good I felt the book and a whole was pretty slow and I barely remember Sam or Grace.

  11. Killing Me Softly pretty much made me cringe. And I was really looking forward to it as well. Otherwise, I haven’t read any of the other books on your list. I’ve seen The Host around a lot today, so I think maybe I’ll have to move it to the TBR pile soon.

  12. The Booker committee, like most committees who set out to award prizes to literary fiction, seems to like only dark, bleak stories. Why is this? How can we change this? Funny books can be literary, too, right?

    • Yes they can!
      Hum, committees: I guess the best way to change them is to make them feel irrelevant, if we can do that it will be in their interest to change. So I guess we just need to keep the book reviews coming, good and bad, and then support rival initiatives like the Goodreads Choice Awards.

  13. The Host almost made my list too, and would have if I’d had more than ten. I really didn’t like the Twilight books, but I still felt like I ought to give The Host a chance. I’m glad I did, because it was much better than Twilight and actually a really good story! 🙂

  14. Great list! Aww about The Unlikely Pilgrim of Harold Fry; the cover does make it look like there’d be loads of humour, doesn’t it? Haven’t gotten around to it yet though.

    Thanks for dropping by my blog last Tuesday, happy weekend! 🙂

  15. Hi! Glad you’re participating in the awesome Top Ten Tuesday meme! The TTT image is actually from the meme’s founder, Jamie at the Perpetual Page Turner. She’s awesome and I’m sure she won’t mind you using the pic for your own TTT!

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