T is for Top Ten Tuesday

 

Top Ten Tuesday Top Ten Books I Liked More/Less than Expected

When I open a book or start reading it, I usually have some expectations, based on reviews, recommendations, even the cover. Some live up to my expectation, some surpass them, and some just don’t cut it.

Five Books I Enjoyed More than I Expected

  1. Yesterday’s Tomorrow by Catherine West – It’s a Christian romance by an author I had never heard of set in Vietnam during/after the war. I don’t tend to read Christian romances, not because I have anything against them, I just tend to thin they’ll be cheesy, and I never read war books. This one though was excellent. At the time, I wrote, “It has a richly developed setting and characters who I truly cared about, who I felt like I knew. I was laughing and sobbing, hoping and worrying along with them.”
  2. The Glamour of Grammar: A Guide to the Magic and Mystery of Practical English by Roy Peter Clark – It’s a non-fiction book about grammar, how good could it be? My Goodreads review summed it up: “Loved it! Read it!” And it’s on my favorites shelf at home.
  3. The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen – I was only reading this for a group discussion. I don’t tend to read YA, with the occasional fantasy being the exception, but this contemporary story really sucked me in. I loved the characters and the honesty in the writing.
  4. The Kingdom on the Edge of Reality by Gahan Hanmer – The concept’s a little odd, a medieval town set up in the woods of modern Canada, and it wasn’t put out by a major publisher which tends to lower my expectations, but I really loved it. “It’s a unique, imaginative story, with great characters, good and bad. There’s romance and adventure, betrayals, sexual trysts and violence.”
  5. Wicked Appetite by Janet Evanovich – I’ve never enjoyed her Plum series, but the library had this audio available and I was desperate. Turned out cute and fun, not an amazingly wonderful book, but much more enjoyable than I expected, so much so that I listened to the second, too.

Five Books I Enjoyed Less than I Expected

  1. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll – It’s a classic. It’s supposed to be fun and whimsical. I expected to enjoy it- I didn’t. I tried reading it again – still no.
  2. The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne M. Valente – Everyone raved about this one. I just wasn’t a fan, but at least I wa reading it with my daughter who really enjoyed it, otherwise I probably would have just put it down. It’s probably the same general reason I don’t like Alice, I just can’t put my finger on what exactly it is.
  3. The Mothman Prophesies by John A. Keel – The movie was decent, I expected the book to be interesting, creepy. Instead was just blah and jumped around a lot.
  4. Skipping Christmas by John Grisham – I like Grisham, I love Christmas stories, wish i had skipped this one. I expected a fun seasonal read, instead I hated all the characters, didn’t care about the story and by the end felt manipulated. I’m told the movie’s better.
  5. The Woman in Black by Susan Hill – I expect a scary ghost story, but it wasn’t as spooky as I though it would be. There were some moments that were perfect, but overall it was a little boring and predictable. We started to watch the movie, but my husband made me turn it off. Maybe it was scarier than I gave it credit for.

What would be on your list?

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

11 Comments

  1. Liz

    I love it when books are better than I expect. And some self pubbed ones can be pretty good.

    For AAIW, was it the language? I find sometimes that older novels tend to be more wordy than newer ones, and that sometimes kicks me out of the story.

  2. Hmm, Interesting to see how many people feature The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making as a book they didn’t enjoy as much as they had expected.

    Like yourself Alice’s Adventures would probably appear on my not as good as I expected list as well. Not that I was as disappointed in this as I was Through The Looking Glass.

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