Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Unpopular Opinions Post

I just dissed an American classic in my TTT (Ethan Frome), and it got me all fired up about HATING ON BOOKS!  I would feel weird about it, but I have seen other "unpopular opinion" posts around, so it's definitely a Thing.  I think it's somewhere between "impossible" and "never gonna happen" for everyone to like the same books, or even to hate the same books.  That being said, there are some wildly popular books that are let-downs, and there are reasonably popular books that are AWFUL. To me.  Obviously, not to everybody.

Without any more stalling, here are some books that just didn't do it for me:

1.  Throne of Glass by Sarah Maas.  I tried to read it once on a whim, and abandoned it.  Then I started hearing about it all over, so I picked it up NOT REALIZING I'D ALREADY TRIED TO READ IT ONCE and then once I realized it, I tried to convince myself that I just didn't give it enough time the first time.

Nope.  Boring.  Flat characters.  Don't care. Only made it about five more pages on my second attempt.

2.  The Maze Runner by James Dashner.  I got bored.  Why?  Stuff is happening!  But I didn't care.  I feel bad because my students love it, especially the boys, and I have to kind of fake more familiarity with the series than I really have.

3.  Life of Pi by Yann Martel.  Loved the first chapter, couldn't make it much further.

4.  Truthwitch by Susan Dennard  I read about half of this before realizing I just didn't care what would happen.  This is the rare case where the author didn't explain enough, as opposed to over explaining.  I didn't see why I should CARE about these people and what they did.

5.  Inkheart by Cornelia Funke.  Wanted to love it.  Didn't.  Can a book be too booky?  Sadly, yes.

6.  Eragon by Christopher Paolini.  Oh my God.  It felt like when one of my students says, "Do you want to read my story?" and I grit my teeth and smile.  Derivative, unoriginal, plodding, pretentious.  Everyone was all, "Can you believe a fifteen year old boy wrote this?" and I was all "I wouldn't believe it if you told me anyone BUT a fifteen year old boy wrote this."

7. Fablehaven by Brandon Mull.  Once again, I let down my male students by not loving this book.  To be fair, I can at least see why they do, and I may well have loved it if I discovered it at 8, 10, or 12.  But it does nothing for 46 year old me.  (See Artemis Fowl, Michael Vey, and Septimus Heap for other examples of this failing on my part.)

8. First and Then by Emma Mills.  Football.  Clunky Austen references.  A foster kid named Foster.  No thanks!

9.  Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher.    She killed herself because she was depressed.  She was depressed because of mental illness.  Nothing other people said or did affected that.  With proper medical treatment, she probably would have lived.  This fundamental misunderstanding of suicide  and mental illness enraged me too much to consider whether or not the book had any redeeming qualities.

10.  The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall.  I might have liked this better if something happened.  Or if I cared about the characters.

And you?  What books have fallen flat for you?  Which of my unpopular opinions made you shriek with outrage?  (Or quietly gasp, "Me too!"?)  


  1. This slice rules. It's fearless. This is the kind of negativity I like to read on the internet! Let me start with the writing. Your intro is perfection. Grabbed me and made me think. Then the Silver Linings Playbook gif (I'm guessing) made me laugh out loud. Been there. Just recently actually. I'm putting Infinite Jest on hold because I need an actual narrative to keep me going right now in my life... Totally agree with a bunch of these, esp Thirteen Reasons Why. I did like it, but not love it. I also wrote about it on my blog a few years ago. Love your candidness! Looking forward to tomorrow's slice.

  2. Ha! It's kind of fun to vent sometimes, right? I watched The Maze Runner movie before I read the book, and I think it actually improved the book for me. I read the second book before the movie and didn't like it as much. I think I'll wait for the third movie to read the third book! LOL!

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

    1. This is basically what I'm doing with the Percy Jackson series--like, as soon as I finish checking my blog I'm going to go join my family watching the DVD of the second movie!


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