Top 10 Tuesdays: Books I Disliked but I’m Glad I Read

When I first saw this week’s topic, I initially thought I didn’t have too many books that I didn’t enjoy. As I started going through my Goodreads list, it reminded me of quite a few books that I’d read over the years that I didn’t like as much as I expected.  Or, it seemed like I had already discussed many of the books I didn’t love so much (ie. The Underground Railroad) many times in the past. In most cases, I didn’t outright hate these books and I’ve actually read very few books in general where I couldn’t find at least something I liked about it. It definitely seems like one common thread with these books are that I had to read them for school, or that I read them when I was well outside the target age range. Many of them are still books that I’m glad I tried because I’d been meaning to read them for so long, or because they are such iconic classics.

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

1) The Neverending Story by Michael Ende

27712I have tried to read this book at least two or three times over the years, and could never get into it! I first read it when I was in elementary school because I found it in the library and it looked amazing! The book is about a boy named Bastian Balthazar Bux who is on the run from bullies when he discovers a mysterious book that draws him into a world called Fantastica. This sets him on a quest to save the land by helping the warrior Atreyu cure the Childlike Empress. I remember finding the story pretty confusing when I first read it, and I developed such a mental block for it that I’ve never been able to get into it ever since. I’m glad I tried it because it is such a children’s classic, but I definitely didn’t love it as much as everyone else seems to. I’m a little tempted to try it again at some point, but I have so many other books on my TBR that it doesn’t seem very likely.

2) The Speed of Dark by Elizabeth Moon

96063This is a book I was expecting to absolutely love, and ended up finding it pretty mediocre, although it is another one that I think needs a second chance. This book is about a man named Lou Arrendale who has high-functioning autism, who becomes eligible for an experimental treatment that will reverse the effects of autism. This book is along the same lines of Flowers for Algernon (which I would also love to re-read because I didn’t like it as much as I expected), raising questions of what makes Lou the person that he is. I was very interested in reading this book because I work with adults who have autism, so the storyline for this one seemed especially intriguing. I definitely didn’t hate this book, but it didn’t interest me nearly as much as I hoped it would. I think part of the problem is I went into this one not quite in the mood to read it, so I think it will be worth trying again at some point.

3) Black Beauty by Anna Sewell

3685This is another book that I developed a mental block for when I was younger. I tried to read it a couple of times when I was in elementary school, but always when I was home sick. I distinctly remember trying to read this when I was lying on the couch with a bad flu, and it just made no sense to me at all at the time. I ended up putting it down, and picking it up another time when I was home sick and had no better luck. I finally forced myself to finish it my first year of university, by which point I’d decided it was ridiculous that I had never read the whole thing. I liked the overall message of the book about how animals should be treated, but I found the story a little boring. At the time I first tried to read it, I was absolutely obsessed with animal stories and I feel like I probably would have liked it a lot more if I had read it properly then. I’m glad I read it because it took so many tries!

4) Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson

297I think I’ve mentioned this before, but for some reason I always have trouble getting into books that are set at sea. I’ve tried this book twice, and I couldn’t really get into it either time. One of the times I read it was for my children’s literature class in university, and I can’t remember what made me decide to revisit it. This book is a classic about a young boy named Jim Hawkins who finds a map and a logbook in a chest belonging to an old sea captain, which leads him on an adventure involving pirates and a search for buried treasure. To be fair, I went into this book not really expecting to enjoy it much since it was not really the kind of story I would be interested in, but I was required to read it for my class. I think I tried it again a second time because I knew it was such a classic and often have better luck with books when I read them on my own, and not when forced to for school. Unfortunately, I still found this one pretty boring and hard to follow. I’m glad I read it because it’s such a classic, but I didn’t enjoy it much at all!

5) The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkein

5907Let me just clarify upfront that I did not hate this, I just didn’t love it either. I had to read this book twice for school, once in 8th grade, and again for my children’s lit class in university. I really, really wanted to love this book, but I just found it so slow! It probably doesn’t help that my impressions of this book were completely tied up with my impressions of the LOTR movie series. My school actually took us on a field trip to see at least one of the movies, and I ultimately ended up watching all of them despite the fact that I didn’t really love them either. During one of the movies, I came down with a very bad cold so that completely ruined the experience since I was so congested and practically falling asleep. It was also really hard for me to have patience for 3 hour movies when I was 12, and by the time the others came out, I already had the idea in mind that I wasn’t so into it. One thing I really liked about The Hobbit is that it made the first movie make so much more sense to me, but I found the reading experience pretty dry. The world-building was incredible and the characters were interesting, but I got bored both times I tried it! I’m glad I read it and tried it for myself, and I will probably (eventually) try the rest of the LOTR books, but I definitely didn’t like it as much as I hoped to.

6) Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret by Judy Blume

37732I’ve pretty much just concluded that I don’t connect with Judy Blume’s writing in general. I was never very interested in her books when I was younger, and hardly picked up any of them. I think the only book of hers I really enjoyed was the picture book The Pain and the Great One. I had to read Forever for my children’s lit class, and didn’t really care for it much, and I decided to try Are You There God? It’s Me Margaret after hearing about it absolutely everywhere for years as an iconic children’s classic, especially for girls. The book is about a sixth-grade student named Margaret who is trying to explore religion because she’s grown up in an interfaith household, and at the same time she confronts issues of puberty. I’m sure a big reason I couldn’t connect with this one is because I was way too old for it at the time, but I honestly don’t think I would have liked it very much when I was a preteen either but I probably would have enjoyed it a little more. Both this book and Forever should be commended for being very realistic and not shying away from the awkwardness of being a teenager, but unfortunately for me, it was not particularly interesting or fun to read.

7) The Devil Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger

5139Despite having no interest in fashion whatsoever, I absolutely loved the movie version of The Devil Wears Prada, although that may be primarily because of Meryl Streep. I decided to pick up this book because I wanted to see how it compared to the movie, and unfortunately I didn’t like it at all! The fashion component was obviously a huge part of the plot, but for me it worked a lot better on the screen than on the page. I got very bored reading the descriptions of every piece of clothing, and I found the main character a lot more irritating than I did in the movie version. Honestly, I probably would not have read this at all if it hadn’t been for the movie. It was one of a few books that I decided to bring with me to read between classes in university, and considering this is not a particularly long or difficult book, it took me an unexpectedly long time to get through because I just wasn’t motivated to pick it up at all. I’m glad I read it because it means I wouldn’t have to wonder how the book compared to the movie, but unfortunately for me it completely lacked the same appeal.

8) Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

4900This one is purely about the bragging rights. I had to read this for an elective course I took about European history in my second or third year of university, which covered a wide variety of topics including art, culture, and a lot more. This book was required reading for a section about colonialism and European expansion, and I did not enjoy it at all! The book is about a sailor named Marlow, who is journeying up the Congo River to meet Kurtz, a man who seems to be both a prisoner but also a god figure to the natives. Marlow sees the native inhabitants of the land who have been forced to work for The Company, and are treated with cruelty and are dying. I didn’t understand the story very well when I read it at the time, and I have so little memory of it ever since that it’s hard to even give my impressions of it. I actually knew the overall plot from other TV series that did versions of it, but the book itself is one I’m glad I read simply for the bragging rights of being able to say I read the original.

9) In the Skin of a Lion by Michael Ondaatje

5946This is another “bragging rights” case, since I did not enjoy this book at all. I was forced to read this book in my final year of high school, which was by far one of the most stressful years of my life for personal reasons as well as the fact that I had the most strict English teacher I’d ever had! This book was my first encounter with a non-linear story, and I just didn’t get it at all at the time. I’m sure a big factor was because I had so much else going on at the time, and my teacher wasn’t exactly helpful. She was obsessed with this book and very passionate about it, but I can’t remember her explaining it very well. It was one of those assignments where it was mostly left to the class to discuss the book and figure it out together, but my class were all confused and struggling with this one, so it was pretty unhelpful. I did not enjoy the experience of reading this one, and I remember so little of the story because it all completely confused me. I honestly couldn’t even describe what the book is about at all! I’m glad I read it because it meant I survived that class and for the bragging rights, but I didn’t like it at all!

10) Stolen: A Letter to my Captor by Lucy Christopher or Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma

64088627600924I didn’t hate either of these books, and I ultimately ended up rating both of them 4 stars. I had been meaning to read both of these books for several years before I finally got around to them last year because they were so popular, and because they both addressed some controversial topics. Stolen is about a teenage girl who is kidnapped and held captive, but begins to develop feelings for the young man who took her, and Forbidden is about an incestuous relationship that develops between two teenage siblings who have always acted as the adults in their household due to  an alcoholic single mother. Neither of these are spoilers, since they are revealed in the synopsis for the books. In both cases, I enjoyed the book to some extent but definitely did not see why everyone was absolutely raving about them.

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Top 10 Tuesdays: Books with Your Favourite Colour on the Cover

I was a little surprised by this week’s topic since I think this is the first Top 10 Tuesday so far where I really felt that only pictures of the books were necessary. I know some bloggers usually just include the cover and maybe a synopsis each time, but I generally prefer to comment a little about the books I’m picking, especially if it’s a book I’ve read since I don’t write reviews otherwise. This week’s topic was a nice change because it was one where it really seemed that the cover art alone should be front and center. My favourite colours are purple and blue, but I decided to go with purple because that seemed a tiny bit less common than books with blue covers.  I chose books just by browsing through my Goodreads list and finding the most interesting covers possible! These are all books that are on my TBR, and are in no particular order.

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

 

From top to bottom, left to right:

Not That I Could Tell by Jessica Strawser
The Witch Boy by Molly Ostertag
The Perfect Stranger by Megan Miranda
Because You Love To Hate Me edited by Ameriie
Muse of Nightmares by Laini Taylor
If I Could Turn Back Time by Nicola Doherty
Questions I Want to Ask You by Michelle Falkoff
The Forgetting by Sharon Cameron
The Nightmare Affair by Mindee Arnett
When Light Left Us by Leah Thomas

 

Top 10 Tuesdays: Books I’d Slay a Lion to Get Early

I thought the “slay a lion” part of this week’s prompt strangely specific, but otherwise I was very excited for this topic. There are many upcoming releases that I’m looking forward to. In fact, one of my favourite things to do when I get bored is to browse Goodreads lists of upcoming releases, which seem to be available sometimes a year or two in advance. I have so many books currently on my TBR that won’t be out until at least 2019! Part of my challenge with this week’s topic was to find books that I’d love to get early that aren’t part of a series. I have quite a few books on my list because I’m very interested in starting the series but haven’t done so yet, so it would be hard to say I’d love to get those early.

It’s also practically impossible for me to read books early. I think I’ve only ever read one ARC, and I’m always a little concerned that things will change in the final version. I definitely don’t have enough experience with them to know how much they are likely to change by the finished copy. Actually, ARCs kind of confuse me since I see so many people online talking about books, and it isn’t until later that I realize they haven’t actually come out yet. In any case, I don’t actively seek out ARCs. If anything, I’m actually usually a little behind on the trends because I avoid books that are extremely overhyped until some of the hype dies down. I also need to wait until they are available from the library, and that can take some time. In any case, there are tons of books that I’m really excited for!

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

1) Solutions and Other Problems by Allie Brosh

24493732I think it’s safe to say I’d slay a lion to get this one early since there is still no set release date for it! This book was first announced in 2015, and has been pushed back repeatedly since then. It is currently listed on Amazon is being released in 2050, which is their code for “no one knows when!” Allie Brosh’s Hyperbole and a Half was by far one of my favourite books that I read last year, and one of the few books that I wanted to re-read the second I finished it. I am looking forward to more of her comics and her hilarious yet meaningful commentary on a variety of situations. As far as I can tell, there hasn’t been any recent news about this book at all and still no word about if or when it is going to be released at all. I’m not even sure if it’s accurate to say I want this one early, since it’s more like I just want it to be released at all.

2) What If It’s Us by Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera

36260157A book by two of my new favourite YA authors seems too good to be true. This book is due out this October (just in time for my birthday!) so it is still quite a while away. It is about two boys, Arthur and Ben, who meet at a post office in New York, while Ben is carrying a box of his ex-boyfriend’s things to send back. I have only read one Adam Silvera book so far and two by Becky Albertalli, but they all became immediate favourites. Both authors are talented at writing realistic and relatable characters, and I’m very interested to see how their two styles will mix. I would assume that each author is writing the perspective of one of the main characters, but I would love to see how they blend together. It also sounds like a really cute story, and if it’s anything like the others I’ve read from both of these authors, I know I’ll love it. I can’t wait for this book!

3) Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik

36896898Uprooted was another book that became a fast favourite last year, and I was very excited to see something new by Naomi Novik coming out this July. For some reason, I’d always assumed Uprooted was her debut so I was surprised to find she already had the 9-book Temeraire series which began in 2006, although I’m not sure how much that one interests me. Spinning Silver definitely seems a lot more up my alley since it is a retelling of the classic Rumpelstiltskin fairy tale. This book is about Miryem, who comes from a line of moneylenders, and sets out to collect debts to her family. In the process, Miryem earns the reputation of being able to turn silver into gold, which of course others want to exploit. Part of what I loved about Uprooted was the fairy tale atmosphere but with such a unique story, and it seems like this will be along the same lines.

4) Final Draft by Riley Redgate

35960813Can it really count as wanting to get this book early when it’s release is only about 6 weeks away? I absolutely loved Noteworthy, but found Seven Ways We Lie a little underwhelming. This book is about a high school senior who had always been told that she was a talented writer. When her teacher is replaced with a Pulitzer Prize winning author who is extremely critical and difficult to impress three months before graduation, Laila quickly becomes obsessed with trying to please her. Honestly, I was a little on the fence since the synopsis made reference to “the psychedelic highs and perilous lows of nightlife, temporary flings, and instability” which is not necessarily something I like reading about, but I love the concept of struggling to impress a teacher. In my own last year of high school, I had a very strict English teacher who seemed impossible to impress although maybe not as bad as the teacher in this book. It seems like an interesting and unique concept for a YA book, and I’m looking forward to trying it.

5) 500 Words or Less by Juleah del Rosario

34104980This is another book that I’m dying to read because it is another unique concept that I’ve never seen in a book before. This book is about a high school senior named Nic who, in attempt to improve her reputation among her classmates, offers to write their college admissions essays for them. Part of why this interested me is because my friends/family have often joked that I could easily run an essay-writing service since I loved doing research and didn’t mind writing papers, while most of the classmates despised it. I never actually did that of course, but it was kind of an interesting idea. I don’t think I’ve ever seen this topic addressed in a book instead of as a very clear black-or-white issue of running it as an intentional scam. In this case, it seems like the book actually explores that fine line between helping and just plagiarizing. I’m so glad to see YA books about a wider variety of topics, and I can’t wait to read this one when it comes out in September!

6) A Spark of Light by Jodi Picoult

39072210This is another book that is coming out just in time for my birthday (leading to the constant struggle with whether to get the hardcover upfront, or wait several months for the paperback to match the rest), and I am always dying to read new books by Jodi Picoult! I’m not sure what’s been going on with Jodi Picoult’s last couple of books, but it seems like they keep getting delayed. I remember Leaving Time was pushed back, and if I recall correctly, so was Small Great Things. Her latest release, due out this October, is about a hostage situation that takes place at a women’s reproductive health clinic. Jodi Picoult’s books always take on such important and timely topics, and I’m interested to see her take on this one. I love how she always presents the issues from multiple angles, to the point where it is hard to even tell where her own biases lie. Reproductive rights was partially touched on in Sing You Home, but I’m glad she’s decided to revisit it from a different perspective. Aside from the storyline, the cover art for this one is just beautiful and definitely sparks my interest that much more!

7) A Map of Days by Ransom Riggs

32943032I had no idea that there were any plans for more books set in the world of the Peculiars, so I was very excited to see this one come up on Goodreads. I know a lot of people were disappointed with the series, but I really enjoyed it and I would love to see more of these characters. This book is due out in early October, and it follows Jacob and the others returning back to the present day and trying to fit in. I tend to love stories about characters from other worlds who are trying to blend in and pass themselves off as regular people, and I already know that I enjoy Ransom Riggs’ writing style. I’m not entirely sure how they plan to carry this plotline into another trilogy but I’m definitely interested in giving it a chance. There is no news at all yet about when the next two books will be released or what they might be about, but I’m sure that will come in time. In the meantime, I’m definitely excited to revisit this world and these characters.

8) On the Come Up by Angie Thomas

35068618Honestly, the plot for this one probably wouldn’t have interested me that much but Angie Thomas is such a talented writer that I want to give it a chance. It is about a 16-year-old girl named Bri who wants to become a rapper like her late father, especially when her family faces financial struggles that make her success no longer an option but a necessity. I’m not a huge fan of rap in general, or of stories about people trying to become a celebrity, but if The Hate U Give is anything to go on, this book should have some very compelling characters who will bring a lot more depth to the story than I usually expect from this kind of plot. This book was originally scheduled to be released later on this year, but Angie Thomas has recently confirmed that it has been pushed back to early February 2019 instead. I was nervous that The Hate U Give wouldn’t live up to the hype, and I’m a little nervous about this one as well, but I’m hoping it will be just as strong.

9) The (Best) Worst Case Scenario by Sandy Hall

31144998This is another case where I’m dying to read this book just because that would mean it was finally getting released! It has been on my TBR since October 2016, when I first noticed it on Goodreads, and it has since been pushed back repeatedly. Currently, it is set to be released at the end of August 2019! I have no idea why this book has been pushed back so often when others by the same author have been released instead. The plot is tricky to describe, especially without any character names available so it kind of becomes pronoun-overload, however it is advertised as being good for fans of Glee. I’ll admit I’ve never really watched the show but I’m familiar enough with it and I love musical theater in general. I also have every Sandy Hall book on my TBR, despite only reading one of them so far, because they all seem so cute. I really want to know what the hold-up is with this one! After literally waiting two years, I’m hoping it’s worth it!

10) 99 Percent Mine by Sally Thorne

Unfortunately, there’s no cover art available for this one yet! This was another pretty unusual case, where a different book, The Comfort Zone, was announced and then inexplicably shelved indefinitely. It was odd because there seemed to be quite a bit of hype surrounding it, but the author commented on Twitter that she wasn’t happy with it and couldn’t finish it. It’s a shame because it seemed like an interesting story. Instead, a new book called 99 Percent Mine was announced, due out in January 2019. I’ve only just found the synopsis today — it is about a woman named Darcy who met the man of her dreams, Tom,  when she was 8, who also happens to be her twin brother’s best friend. When Darcy has only three months to get her life together and get the cottage she and her brother inherited from their grandmother, Tom arrives to help and is single for the first time in a decade. Darcy is determined to finally make Tom hers, but isn’t sure whether he can get past seeing her as a little sister. Up until last year, I probably would have avoided this kind of book but Sally Thorne’s The Hating Game became a surprise favourite! I’m looking forward to reading this one, but I’m a bit disappointed that The Comfort Zone never happened.

 

 

Top 10 Tuesdays: Frequently Used Words in YA Contemporary Titles

This was an interesting topic that came up for this week’s Top 10 Tuesday. There are definitely some words that seem to come up very, very frequently in book titles. I was on the fence for a while about whether I wanted to focus on YA or thrillers, since both tend to have the same words over and over in their titles. I decided to go for YA because there seemed to be a wider variety of words, whereas most thrillers seemed to be variants on woman/girl/wife. With a TBR currently over 2000 books, it wasn’t too hard to find titles with words in common although most of these are books I have not read yet. It would obviously be completely overwhelming to try to give a synopsis or even the cover art for each title, so instaed I decided to keep it simple. For each word, I will list a few examples of books that have that word in the title. If I’ve read the book, I’ll put my star rating beside it, and if I haven’t, I will write TBR.

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

1) Heart(s)
My Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga (4 stars)
This Heart of Mine by C.C. Hunter (TBR)
Things We Know by Heart by Jessi Kirby (TBR)
The Anatomical Shape of a Heart by Jenn Bennett (TBR)
Our Chemical Hearts by Krystal Sutherland (TBR)
Foolish Hearts by Emma Mills
Tash Hearts Tolstoy by Kathryn Ormsbee (5 stars)
Listen To Your Heart by Kasie West (TBR)
Broken Beautiful Hearts by Kami Garcia (TBR)

2) You
You Know Me Well by Nina LaCour and David Levithan (TBR)
The You I’ve Never Known by Ellen Hopkins (TBR)
A World Without You by Beth Revis (TBR)
The Way You Make Me Feel by Maurene Goo (TBR)
I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson (5 stars)
The Geography of You and Me by Jennifer E. Smith (TBR)
Keeping You a Secret by Julie Anne Peters (TBR)
The Start of Me and You by Emery Lord (TBR)
History is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera (5 stars)
Say What You Will by Cammie McGovern (5 stars)
Everything Leads to You by Nina LaCour (TBR)

3) What
What We Left Behind by Robin Talley (TBR)
What’s Broken Between Us by Alexis Bass (TBR)
What I Thought Was True by Huntley Fitzpatrick (3 stars)
What To Say Next by Julie Buxbaum (TBR)
What I Lost by Alexandra Ballard (TBR)
What Happened to Goodbye by Sarah Dessen (TBR)
What If It’s Us by Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera (Upcoming Release)
What You Left Behind by Jessica Verdi (TBR)

4) When
When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon (5 stars)
When Reason Breaks by Cindy L. Rodriguez (TBR)
When We Collided by Emery Lord (4 stars)
When Elephants Fly by Nancy Richardson Fischer (Upcoming Release)
When Michael Met Mina by Randa Abdel-Fattah (TBR)
When My Heart Joins the Thousand by A.J. Steiger

5) Love
The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith (3 stars)
Love Letters to the Dead by Ava Dellaria (4 stars)
Flat-Out Love by Jessica Park (4 stars)
Love & Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch (3 stars)
How To Love by Katie Cotugno (TBR)
Love and Other Foreign Words by Erin McCahan (TBR)
Love, Hate & Other Filters by Samira Ahmed (TBR)
Love, Life and the List by Kasie West (TBR)
Let’s Talk About Love by Claire Kann (TBR)

6) Truth
Truth or Dare by Non Pratt (TBR)
The Truth About Happily Ever After by Karole Cozzo (TBR)
The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen (TBR)
The Truth About Alice by Jennifer Mathieu (TBR)
All the Truth That’s In Me by Julie Berry (4 stars)
The Truth Commission by Susan Juby (TBR)

7) Summer (This one was harder because many of the books seem a bit too juvenile for me, so they aren’t on my TBR)
Twenty Boy Summer  and The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler (TBR)
The Summer I Turned Pretty series by Jenny Han (Not interested)
The Summer I Wasn’t Me by Jessica Verdi (TBR)
Open Road Summer by Emery Lord (TBR)
That Summer by Sarah Dessen (Not interested)
Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson (TBR)
The Second Summer of the Sisterhood by Ann Brashares (Not interested)
The Summer of Firsts and Lasts by Terra Elan McVoy (Not interested)

8) Girl(s)
Girls Like Me by Lola St. Vil (TBR)
The Girl Who Fell by S.M. Parker (TBR)
Girl on the Verge by Pintip Dunn (TBR)
Girl Made of Stars by Ashley Herring Blake (Upcoming Release)
A Girl Like That by Tanaz Bhathena (TBR)
Gabi, a Girl in Pieces by Isabel Quintero (TBR)
Frat Girl by Kiley Roache (TBR)
Me and Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews (4 stars)
Some Girls Are by Courtney Summers (TBR)
If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo (4 stars)

9) All
All The Bright Places by Jennifer Niven (5 stars)
Turtles All the Way Down by John Green (TBR)
To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han (4 stars)
All the Rage by Courtney Summers (TBR)
Once and for All by Sarah Dessen (TBR)
All American Boys by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely (TBR)
We Are All Made of Molecules by Susin Nielsen (TBR)
Been Here All Along by Sandy Hall (TBR)
All in Pieces by Suzanne Young (TBR)
All the Feels by Danika Stone (TBR)

10) Life
The Inexplicable Logic of My Life by Benjamin Alire Saenz (4 stars)
My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick (4 stars)
This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales (TBR)
How to Save a Life by Sara Zarr (TBR)
Fans of the Impossible Life by Kate Scelsa (TBR)
True Letters from a Fictional Life by Kenneth Logan (TBR)
Still Life with Tornado by A.S. King (TBR)
In Real Life by Jessica Love (3 stars)
In Some Other Life by Jessica Brody (TBR)

Top 10 Tuesdays: Ten Thrillers I Recently Added to my TBR

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday is a freebie, which surprisingly left me struggling to try to choose a topic. I decided to go with a prompt I last wrote about all the way back in June 2017, which was a list of thrillers I’d recently added to my list. Earlier this year as well, when I discussed my goals for the year, I included thrillers as a genre I wanted to try more often. I’m a coward when it comes to horror, but I love a good psychological thriller. It’s a genre that I often add to my TBR but don’t pick up too often because the books often start to feel too similar, and there are so many that seem very overrated. As I started looking at my TBR for an upcoming Stacking the Shelves post for this weekend, I realized I had quite a few thrillers that I’d recently added and I thought they deserved their own post.

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

1) I’ve Got My Eyes on You by Mary Higgins Clark

35297310I have to admit, I’m a little hesitant about this one. Mary Higgins Clark was one of my first introductions to “adult” level books. I’ve only read a few of her books, and although there were two that I really loved, the others have always been pretty hit-or-miss. The synopses of her books always sound so interesting, but I’m not always a fan of the execution. This book just came out earlier this month, and came up recently on a list of new thriller releases. It is about an 18-year-old girl named Kerry who is found fully-clothed at the bottom of her family’s pool, and her boyfriend is immediately suspected of the crime. Kerry’s older sister is a guidance counselor who wants to help with the investigation. It sounds like a fairly straightforward mystery-thriller, and although I haven’t always been a fan of the Mary Higgins Clark books I’ve read, I always hope to discover another one that has the same appeal as the first few that I read.

2) The Teacher by Katerina Diamond

28689742I actually heard of this book when I asked my boyfriend for help with a challenge prompt requiring a book that a stranger was reading in public. I rarely (if ever) see people reading in public, but he commutes to work on public transit every day so I asked him to look out for a few titles. This was one of the books he saw someone reading, which is about a head teacher who was found dead at an exclusive school, a few hours after receiving a mysterious package. I thought the cover art alone was pretty intriguing because it seemed so dark and creepy. I’m also a tiny bit hesitant toward thrillers or mysteries that are marked as part of a series since they can kind of walk a fine line between series and standalone, but this one is the first in the Imogen Grey series, and the author’s first novel ever, so it seems like the perfect place to start.

3) Trespassing by Brandi Reeds

36156747I discovered this book on a list of new and upcoming releases for this year. It is the author’s debut novel, which just came out on April 1. This book is about a woman named Veronica Cavanaugh whose recent failed fertility treatment seems to have left her mentally unstable. At the same time, her three-year-old daughter has a new and creepy imaginary friend, and her husband has failed to return home from a business trip. When her daughter starts insisting that her father is dead, Veronica’s paranoia takes over and she is led to a house in the Florida Keys to try to uncover what happened to her husband.  Honestly, the words “creepy imaginary friend” were enough to convince me to add this to my TBR. I usually love thrillers where you can’t be sure what’s real and what’s not, and this one seemed very intriguing.

4) Best Friends Forever by Margot Hunt

34129111This is another fairly recent release (January 23 of this year) that I only discovered recently, but it’s another that immediately caught my attention. It is about two women, Kat and Alice, who have been friends for a long time despite being very different. When Kat’s husband plunges to his death from their balcony, Kat stops responding to calls and texts and her family prevents Alice from seeing her. At the same time, investigators seem to be taking an interest in Alice as a potential suspect. This book has received some great reviews so far on Goodreads, with a 3.89 average after just under 4 months out. This is pretty impressive considering it is the author’s first ever psychological thriller, although she has written 12 other novels under another name. It definitely seems like an interesting concept, and I’m looking forward to eventually giving it a chance.

5) Social Creature by Tara Isaballa Burton

34909789This is another book that I discovered through a list of upcoming releases, and the cover art caught my attention because it reminded me a bit of the movie poster for Black Swan. It is about two women, Louise and Lavinia, who meet through a chance encounter and develop an intense and toxic friendship. It was actually tricky to find any plot details about this one, but according to the synopsis of one edition on Goodreads, Louise is a poor struggling writer who meets the wealthy Lavinia, and is invited into her charmed life, but knows that it can’t last forever. It seems like the focus will be how far Louise will go to keep her new lifestyle, so maybe Black Swan wasn’t all that far off. This book won’t be out until early June of this year so it will be interesting to see the reviews as they come in.

6) The Neighbors by Hannah Mary McKinnon

35083336I’ve found quite a few books lately that focus on creepy neighbours or conflicts between neighbours. It is about a woman named Abby who was responsible for a car crash that killed her brother many years ago. Abby ends up married to the man who was first on the scene and rescued her from the car, but who lives with the guilt of being unable to save her brother.  Years later, Abby’s ex-boyfriend Liam moves into the house next door with his family, and the two pretend they have never met despite the shared secrets they have both been carrying. This is another case where I was first drawn to the book by the cover art because of the row of houses that all seemed to be perfect clones of each other. The plot itself also sounds pretty intriguing, and I’m curious to see how two people who have such a history together could possibly act like they don’t know each other. This book definitely seems less “thriller”-like than others on the list, so I’m curious to see how it works out.

7) The Innocent Wife by Amy Lloyd

35087559This book has such an interesting concept! It is about a woman named Samantha who exchanges letters with a prisoner named Dennis, who was convicted of a brutal murder. Over time, she falls in love with him and decides to marry him and campaign for his release from prison, only to discover that she might not know him as well as she thought. I’ve always found it pretty interesting that there are people who strike up a friendship and even a relationship with individuals convicted of horrible crimes. It’s hard for me to imagine being able to trust someone who was accused of something like that enough to feel comfortable in a relationship, but I think it makes a great idea for a book. I’m very interested to see how the author builds the relationship between Samantha and Dennis, and especially what it takes for her to decide to marry him. It seems like such a unique premise for the story, and I’m really looking forward to this one.

8) The House Swap by Rebecca Fleet

36700649I remember watching so many shows when I was younger about people who swapped homes and redecorated for each other. Honestly, I was never a huge fan but my parents watched them all the time, so when I saw this book, I thought it was a great concept for a thriller. In it, Caroline and Francis have the opportunity to swap homes with someone, giving them a chance to get away from the tensions at home. Meanwhile, their new neighbour seems to be showing a little too much interest in them, and Caroline starts to notice some very familiar signs of life in the house — signs of her own life, that only someone who knows her would be aware of. This book is not due out until late May, but it seems like a great one. There really seems to be a trend for creepy neighbour stories recently.

9) Little Secrets by Anna Snoekstra

34273509This is another book that came up on a list I found recently of recent thrillers. This one came out last October, and focuses on a journalist named Rose who is looking for a big story. In her town of Colmstock, Australia, an arsonist is on the loose, and porcelain replicas of girls in town begin turning up on people’s doorsteps. Rose thinks she’s finally found her story, and the terrified town has begun to turn against each other as suspicions grow. Creepy dolls are one of those plot devices that tend to automatically freak me out. I have a cousin who collects dolls, and some of them are so incredibly realistic that it’s scary! This book hasn’t received the best reviews so far so I’m a little worried about how much I’ll actually like it, but it sounds like a great premise.

10) The Other Woman by Sandie Jones

36212848This was one of the first books I added to my TBR this month, discovered on a list of upcoming releases for this year. It is about a woman named Emily who falls in love with Adam, a man who she thinks is perfect for her, until she realizes that his mother Pammie wants her out of the way, and will stop at nothing to make sure that happens. The premise reminds me a bit of a much darker version of the Jennifer Lopez movie Monster-in-Law. Although it is not due out until August, it has already received rave reviews on Goodreads from people who have read ARCs of it, and it sounds like such a great story. I don’t think I’ve ever read a book where the primary rival for someone’s affection is a parent rather than a partner, so this one definitely sounds pretty unique. I’m looking forward to this one!

 

 

 

 

Top 10 Tuesdays: Books You Enjoyed But Will Never Re-read

It’s kind of funny that this is the topic for the week, since I very recently had a conversation with my boyfriend about re-reading (or re-watching) things we’ve already read (or watched). Personally, I love to re-read favourites and there are certain books and series that I’ve revisited so many times over the year. For him, it’s different because he has an excellent memory and can remember plots in great detail, so it’s never as fun as the first time. Part of why I love to re-read books is because it’s hard for me to remember all the details of what happened, so it can be fun to go back and remind myself. I also love discovering clues and small details that I may not have noticed the first time. Usually, when I pick a book to re-read, it’s because it’s something I already know and love, but sometimes it is because I know I’ve read the book but literally remember nothing from it. I re-read Go Ask Alice several times when I was younger because no matter how many times I tried it, I can still never remember anything about it. What’s harder to think about are books that I don’t want to re-read, since if I liked it, there’s a good chance I’ll want to revisit it at some point.

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

1) The Matched trilogy by Ally Condie

17987508I completely missed out on this series when it first came out back in 2010, around the height of the dystopian trend. At the time, I just wasn’t interested enough in the genre to read more than The Hunger Games and Divergent, and although I’d heard good things about this one, I didn’t care enough to try it. I finally decided to give it a chance this year because it was one of a few very popular series that I’d never picked up, and although I generally enjoyed it, I don’t think I would pick it up again. I really enjoyed Matched, but I found Crossed a bit boring. Reached was great, but felt more like a standalone that just so happened to feature the same characters since the plot had almost nothing to do with the previous books. My biggest issue was that both the world-building and especially the characters were underdeveloped, and I could not buy into the main romance at all because I didn’t think there was any chemistry whatsoever. When I read Matched, I’d commented that the romance felt rushed, and as the series developed, that impression never really changed. It seems like the characters just jumped into being madly in love for no real reason, and that was not very interesting to read. I’m glad I gave it a chance, but I don’t think I’ll care enough to re-read it.

2) The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend by Katarina Bivald

25573977I picked this book up last year expecting to love it, and unfortunately it was not quite as good as I expected. I still ended up rating it 4 stars, so obviously I enjoyed it but I expected a little bit more. The book is about a young woman named Sara who is from Sweden and visits a small town in Iowa after corresponding with a woman who lives there about books. She arrives in town to discover that her friend has recently died, but the townspeople persuade her to stay anyway, eventually leading her to decide that the town needs a bookshop. Essentially, the book was about Sara opening her bookshop to try and provide the people around town with the books they “need” to read based on their situation. There were some scenes that I absolutely loved, such as the entire town gathering to see how long Sara would continue to read non-stop, but as a whole, I found it a little too boring in places to want to try again.

3) All The Truth That’s In Me by Julie Berry

17297487I read this book earlier this year for a challenge prompt requiring a book written in second person perspective, which is very difficult to find! This book had been on my TBR for close to three years so I decided it was about time to give it a chance. It is about a girl named Judith who had been kidnapped and had her tongue cut out by her kidnapper, and returns home. The story is told in the form of letters that Judith writes to her crush as she talks about her experiences since coming home. I found this book a little misleading since nothing in the synopsis even remotely suggested that it would be set in a Puritan-style village. While that is something I would have been interested in anyway, I found it off-putting while I was reading since it wasn’t what I expected. The book was a pretty quick read and an interesting story, but not something that I’d be very motivated to try again. I think the fact that it took me three years to get around to it in the first place is explanation enough.

4) We Were Liars by E. Lockhart

16143347I actively avoided this book for a long time because it seemed ridiculously overhyped, but finally gave in and decided to give it a chance. When I first heard of it, I was very frustrated by the complete lack of a synopsis because every single review commented that it was impossible to say anything without giving things away. The most I can share is that this book is about a wealthy family who spend their summers on a private island, where something has happened. This was another book that was very fast to read, and I generally enjoyed it but I was disappointed that I very easily predicted the twist early on. It was not a surprise to me at all, and I actually did not like the way the incident in question was executed because it seemed so unrealistic. Given that this book is so contingent on the twist, it would be hard to re-read it anyway knowing what happens, and I especially would not be too interested since I wasn’t such a fan of the execution.

5) Me and Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews

12700353This was another book that I eventually had to pick up because it was so heavily hyped. It is about a boy named Greg whose classmate Rachel is diagnosed with cancer, and his mother pressures him to rekindle their former friendship. Greg and his friend Earl decide to try to cheer Rachel up by making their own (terrible) films.  It’s the kind of story that I generally would have loved, but I just found the characters so irritating. Both Greg and  Earl were frustrating because their humour was just so immature and vulgar. I did not find it funny at all. I really loved how Greg’s emotions toward Rachel and her diagnosis were portrayed, including his reluctance to get involved and admission that he probably wouldn’t have hung out with Rachel otherwise. It was definitely very different from other YA cancer stories, and I appreciated it for that, but this book was nowhere near as good as I hoped, and I probably wouldn’t want to read it again.

6) My Life Next Door and 7) What I Thought Was True by Huntley Fitzpatrick

1229465215832932I’m grouping these two books together since they are by the same author, and both had basically the same problem. I enjoyed them both as I read them, but they were ultimately completely unmemorable. My Life Next Door is about a girl named Samantha who falls in love with the literal boy next door, Jase Garrett, whose family is looked down upon by others in the area. What I Thought Was True is about a teenage girl named Gwen who is trying to move past mistakes she’s made over the past year, and is annoyed to find that one of the boys she is trying to avoid has taken a summer job on the island, where she can’t seem to escape seeing him. Literally the only thing I remember about My Life Next Door is that Jase had a huge family, and Sam’s mother was completely awful. I don’t remember much about What I Thought Was True at all, but I know I did not like it quite as much. Normally when I remember so little about a book I’m tempted to try it again at some point, but I doubt I’ll be too motivated in picking these up again.

8) Stolen: A Letter to My Captor by Lucy Christopher

6408862This was another book that I read because it was so hyped, and had been on my TBR for a long time. This book is formatted as a letter from a teenage girl named Gemma who was kidnapped by Ty, a man a few years older than her who claims to have fallen in love with her and takes Gemma away to the Australian outback to keep her forever. I was really looking forward to this one because it had received such rave reviews for it. I liked it, but didn’t love it. The format of the book didn’t quite work for me because the entire thing was formatted as a single, very detailed letter that describes absolutely everything. Most of the time, it did not really read like a letter so it was a little bit of an odd format choice. I think it may have worked better if the story had been split into several shorter “letters” instead. I also had a lot of trouble buying into the whole Stockholm Syndrome aspect of the story because it was impossible for me to look past the fact that Ty had stalked and kidnapped Gemma, even though as kidnappers go, he wasn’t so horrible. It’s another case where I’m glad I got it off my TBR, but probably wouldn’t read it again.

9) The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson

6604794I’m a little more on the fence about this one since it is one that I can see myself eventually giving a second chance. I read this book because I really loved I’ll Give You the Sun and I was hoping this one would be as good. Unfortunately, this one didn’t appeal to me as much. This book is about a teenage girl named Lennie who is dealing with the loss of her older sister, Bailey. Lennie is torn between her sister’s boyfriend Toby, who seems to be the only person who understands her grief, and the new boy, Joe. My favourite part of this book were the scraps of notes and poems that Lennie left scattered around the city, which really gave great insight into her relationship with her sister. I just wasn’t a huge fan of the characters in general, nor of the love triangle. I can see myself giving this one another chance at some point in the future, but definitely not for a while.

10) Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver

6482837I don’t know what it is with Lauren Oliver’s books, but they never reach past 4 stars for me. I always like them, but something always holds them back from reaching a full 5 stars. This book is about a catty popular girl named Sam who dies in a car accident on her way home from a party, but is forced to relive the day several times to try to change her life. It took me quite a while to get into this book because Sam and her closest friends were such unlikeable characters who were shallow, selfish, and bullies. I also found the book a bit repetitive since the restart of the day tended to use similar language before diverging based on Sam’s decisions. I thought the book really picked up in the second half, where more of the side characters started to get more fully developed. One of the strongest elements of this book for me was the very realistic portrayal of bullying, including the behaviours, the effects, and even the idea that sometimes it is for no real reason at all. It took a long time for Sam to start to recognize her own bad behaviour, but I really liked when she started to notice the hypocrisy and facades used by the popular crowd. Overall, I thought the book was a little too long for such a repetitive story premise, but it was also a lot better than I expected.

 

 

Top 10 Tuesdays: 10 Characters You Liked in Books You Disliked/Weren’t Favourites

I think it’s safe to say that this is one of the most difficult Top 10 Tuesday topics so far. I knew as soon as I saw it on the list that I would have a hard time with it. In general, the characters make or break the book for me. I can even tolerate a mediocre plot if the characters are very strong. Aside from that, there aren’t all that many books (that I can remember in detail at least) that I really disliked. It seems as if I’m not the only one struggling. I spent a couple of hours today looking at many of the links to various blogger’s Top 10 Tuesday post for this week, and I was a little to surprised to see just how many people had changed the topic to the opposite or created a new topic of their own. I decided to stick to the original, but with a pretty broad definition of what qualifies as a book that isn’t a favourite. Basically anything that wasn’t a 5 star read to me can be classified as not being a favourite.

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

1) Rose and Ruby from The Girls by Lori Lansens

47076I read this book in 2016 for a prompt requiring a book set in my home state, which was one of the prompts I was least excited for. I was intrigued by this book because of the concept. It focused on Rose and Ruby, conjoined twins who are joined at the head. The story is told in the format of an autobiography written by Rose, as she describes her life attached to her sister. What is even more unusual about these twins is the way their bodies have formed. Aside from being conjoined at the head, Rose’s body has never fully developed, so she is carried by her sister almost the way a mother carries a child, with arms and legs wrapped around her. I thought the concept of the story was fascinating and the twins were both very interesting characters, but unfortunately I did not enjoy this book very much at all. I found it slow-paced and it went into far too much detail about boring events, and glossed over other parts that would have been much more interesting to read. It’s a shame really, since the characters had so much potential.

2) Carrie White from Carrie by Stephen King

10592Unpopular opinion time, but I have never been able to get into Stephen King’s writing. To be fair, I’ve only tried two books but I wasn’t a huge fan of either of them, and definitely not enough to be particularly motivated to read any more. Carrie was the first book of his that I read, which I read already knowing the majority of the storyline. For those who don’t know, Carrie was a bullied and abused teenage girl who develops powers that she uses to unleash horror on the people who tormented her. My main issue with this book was that I was not a fan of the writing style, although the characters were interesting. I loved the idea of the story, showing an extreme reaction to years of bullying and abuse by her mother and her classmates. The problem was, because I couldn’t get into the writing style, I had a lot of trouble connecting with the story. Carrie was a great and memorable character, but the book itself didn’t live up to my expectations at all.

3) Cora Randall from The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead

30555488This was another case of an interesting character in a book I just could not get into at all. I’ve mentioned before that I was never particularly interested in reading the book, but decided to pick it up because of all the hype and because it was chosen as a Book of the Month for one of my Goodreads groups. Cora is a slave living on a cotton plantation in Georgia who has the opportunity to escape using the Underground Railroad, which in this version of the story is a literal railroad that takes slaves across the country with several stops along the way. Essentially, the book used each stop to show different eras in Black history, and it unfortunately did not work well for me because it was told from such a distant and impersonal perspective. Cora seemed like a very interesting character, but I just couldn’t get engrossed in her story because of the writing style. It felt more like a textbook than a novel to me, and that was enough to put me off.

4) Hester Prynne from The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

7885658I have known the general storyline of The Scarlet Letter from the time I was in elementary school thanks to watching Wishbone, and I decided it was finally time to give this classic a try last year. This was one of the few books that I almost gave up on right away because the opening chapter was so incredibly dry. In that chapter, the narrator describes (at great length) how they “found” the story of the scarlet letter. As soon as the book moved to Hester Prynne and her story, my interest was regained. I was very surprised to learn that Hester had a daughter, and it was actually her daughter who seemed to play the biggest role in the story. I thought Hester was a very strong character and was interested in her choice to wear the scarlet A without shame, but this was another book that I had trouble connecting with because of the writing style. It took me much longer than I expected to get through the book, and I had very little motivation to actually read it, despite my interest in Hester as a character.

5) Gandalf from The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien

5907Another unpopular opinion, but I have never been a big fan of The Lord of the Rings in any format. I’ve seen all the movies, but have never tried the books. I was assigned The Hobbit twice to read for school, once in eighth grade and again in a university Children’s Literature course. Both times, I found the book very boring and slow to get through, although I still ultimately rated it 4 stars. While I definitely agree that the world-building is absolutely incredible and the book writing is technically amazing, I just can’t get into it. I was not a huge fan of the movies either since I found them a little confusing, and I would theoretically love to try the books at some point, but definitely not for a while. The one thing I really did enjoy was the introduction of Gandalf, as a guide and protector of Bilbo and his friends. There is not too much to his character in this book alone, but it definitely hints at a lot more and leaves just enough to keep you interested.

6) Dante Quintana from Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz

12000020I did not hate this book, but it definitely did not live up to all the hype for me. I actually really want to give this one another chance because I almost feel like I rushed it when I last read it, and I think that affected my perception of the story and especially of the ending. Aristotle was a decent character, but I generally don’t like characters who are always angry and lashing out. Dante, on the other hand, was an excellent character and I wish we would have gotten more about him instead. Dante was a sweet character, and he was a real highlight of the story for me (and the main reason that I want to try it again). Another great thing about this book is that both characters had great and supportive parents, which is a real rarity in YA books. Both of the Benjamin Alire Saenz’s books always have great characters, even if the storylines don’t always quite work for me.

7) Georgette “Buffy” Meissonier from Feed by Mira Grant

7094569In general, I have no interest at all in zombie stories in any format but my mom recommended this book to me because of the unusual format. This book focuses on Georgia (George) and Shaun, two sibling bloggers who are working in the United States after “the Rising,” a zombie outbreak accidentally created by scientists. The siblings and their team are hired to follow a senator’s campaign for presidency. This book was quite lengthy and got repetitive at times, but I loved the blog segments that were interspersed throughout. I rated this book 4 stars in the end, so it definitely not was a book that I disliked and in fact, it was a book that I enjoyed a lot more than I expected. I’m counting it toward this list because it was a character I liked from a genre that I typically don’t enjoy. My favourite character was Georgette Meissonier, who goes by the nickname “Buffy” (as in the Vampire Slayer, my favourite show!). Buffy was a fiction writer and a technology expert who works with the siblings as part of their team, and she was a great character. I thought she brought great balance to the team and she was one of my favourites.

8) Tris from The Divergent Trilogy by Veronica Roth

17383994Divergent was a tricky one for me. I read it after I absolutely adored The Hunger Games, and I was really hoping this one would be on par. I really enjoyed Divergent as a book on its own, and I thought Tris was an interesting main character, although basically the same as most other dystopian protagonists. Unfortunately, I found the series kind of fell apart in the following two books. I found myself confused by some of the explanations about what the main conflict was really about and what people were fighting for. I was especially confused by the whole “genetic purity” aspect, which was unfortunate because it was essential to the story. It is another case where I almost think I read through it too quickly since I read all three in a row, and might have rushed a bit. I’m interested in giving it another chance because I really liked Tris as a main character and thought her development through the series was very well-done.

9) Alice Cullen and 10) Rosalie Hale from The Twilight Saga by Stephanie Meyer

41865I’m cheating a bit and including two characters from the same series since I had such a tough time with this week’s topic to begin with. This series was incredibly frustrating for me because it had so much potential to be very interesting, and it just never got there. I was not a fan of the main characters, but Alice and Rosalie were both intriguing and I would have loved to have more of their backstories. I loved finally getting to find out more about Rosalie specifically in Eclipse, and I hoped to get something similar for Alice as well. I actually checked the Wiki page for Alice’s backstory but none of it was familiar at all, so if it was mentioned in the books (and it probably was), it obviously was not that memorable. Alice was just a fun character who added a lot of personality to the book, and I thought both of these characters were very interesting and another perfect example of the potential this series had.