Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Loved Less/More Than I Thought I Would

Today's Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, is all about books that exceed or fall short of expectations.  Here's my off-the-top-of-my-head list...decided to split the 10 in two.

Books Loved Less

  1. Game of Kings, by Dorothy Dunnett - I just abandoned this book.  I ended up really not liking the main character and I felt that despite the plot machinations, the story seemed fairly predictable.  After reading over 200 pages, I felt justified in deciding I'd given it a fair shake.
  2. Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie, by Alan Bradley - this series has gotten rave reviews but I really couldn't stand the precocious girl who was the main character.
  3. Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, by Susanna Clarke - never finished it.  Got halfway through and was bored to brain fatigue.
  4. Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, by Jules Verne - yawn...
  5. Something Wicked This Way Comes, by Ray Bradbury - exhausting and overblown.

Books Loved More

  1. Little Women, by Louisa May Alcott - somehow I never read this as a child or teen, and so was surprised by how good it was for a skeptical, adult reader.
  2. The Girl on the Train, by Paula Hawkins - I wanted to see what the fuss was about and was swept away.
  3. Never Let Me Go, by Kazuo Ishiguro - I was totally unprepared for the story, but found it compelling. Distopian fiction is not a genre I like, but this story really worked.
  4. Germinal, by Emile Zola - what a fantastic book, I was expecting a dull book but was overwhelmed by the story and the fully developed characters.
  5. Miss Marjoribanks, by Margaret Oliphant - what a delightful character in this sleeper of a Victorian novel.


  1. Great top 10! I also was annoyed by Flavia de Luce, I finished the first book but have no desire to read any of the others. Also bored by 20,000 Leagues, DNF. However, I actually LOVED Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell. Also agree about Germinal and Miss Marjoribanks. I'm looking forward to reading more by Margaret Oliphant.

  2. I loved Miss Marjoribanks! I thought it was very funny. But I have to admit, the last time I read Little Women I got a little bored and wondered why I thought I liked it so much once upon a time. :)

  3. Yeah I agree, Never Let Me Go -- was a story that blew me away. This is a good list, and I'd like to get to the Emile Zola book. thx

  4. I love Flavia, but I can see where she would annoy other readers. And I adored Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell.

    I am with you on 200,000 Leagues however. I think I must have read an abridged version as a child because when I re-read it as an adult I found it tedious and overly long.

    I have never read Miss Marjoribanks but would like to give that title a try some day. It sounds like a fun read!

  5. Sometimes a book can be so disappointing This is especially true when expectations are built up.

    When the opposite happens it is nice surprise.

  6. I couldn't agree more about Germinal - what a great read! Recently added Miss Marjoribanks to my list.

  7. I also concur about Germinal, well done book.