Hello bookworms! I’m Nia and today I’m going to be talking about books that I enjoyed that other people didn’t that much.
Now I have to say that I’m usually on the unpopular opinions side, and I tend to not enjoy books that other people seem to love, so this one was kind of a challenge to me. I had to look at Goodreads so I could find 5 books to talk about, and it was a bit hard because the lowest ratings were usually books I didn’t enjoy, either. Nonetheless, I ended up finding 5 books that I enjoyed (though not adored) and that other people didn’t.
If you aren’t familiar with Top 5 Tuesday, it is a group here on WordPress now currently run by Shanah over at BionicBookWorm, where each week they give you a topic and you talk about 5 books that fit that category.
Without any further ado, let’s start with this week’s topic!
This Darkness Mine | Mindy McGinnis
My thoughts: Somehow I knew this was going to pop up here. I really enjoyed this book, but I understand why people hated it. I tend to like weird books where you don’t know what’s going on, and I think Mindy McGinnis does an amazing job at creating twisted, atmospheric stories. I have to say I don’t love it as much as when I first read it, but it still was an odd, dark book, and I very much enjoyed it.
I have a review of this book here in case you want to check it out.
Sasha Stone knows her place—first-chair clarinet, top of her class, and at the side of her oxford-wearing boyfriend. She’s worked her entire life to ensure that her path to Oberlin Conservatory as a star musician is perfectly paved.
But suddenly there’s a fork in the road, in the shape of Isaac Harver. Her body shifts toward him when he walks by, her skin misses his touch even though she’s never known it, and she relishes the smell of him—smoke, beer, and trouble—all the things she’s avoided to get where she is. Even worse, every time he’s near Sasha, her heart stops, literally. Why does he know her so well—too well—and she doesn’t know him at all?
Sasha discovers that her by-the-book life began by ending another’s: the twin sister she absorbed in the womb. But that doesn’t explain the gaps of missing time in her practice schedule or the memories she has of things she certainly never did with Isaac. As Sasha loses her much-cherished control, her life—and heart—become more entangled with Isaac. Armed with the knowledge that her heart might not be hers alone, Sasha must decide what she’s willing to do—and who she’s willing to hurt—to take it back.
Love and Other Train Wrecks | Leah Konen
My thoughts: I wouldn’t say this book was my favorite in the entire world, but it was a cute contemporary story. Though I don’t remember much what happened throughout the story, I’m pretty sure I did enjoy it. I had so much fun reading it, and though I haven’t heard many people talking about it, it still hasn’t got the best reviews on Goodreads, hence why I’m mentioning here.
Noah is a hopeless romantic. He’s heading back home for one last chance with his first love, whom he broke up with when he went off to college.
Ammy doesn’t believe in true love—her parents being prime examples. She’s escaping from a mom who can’t take care of her to a dad who may not even want her. That is, until one winter night when Noah and Ammy find themselves in the same Amtrak car heading to Upstate New York.
After a train-wreck first encounter between the two of them, the Amtrak train suddenly breaks down due to a snowstorm. Desperate to make it to their destinations, Noah and Ammy have no other option but to travel together. What starts off as a minor detour turns into the whirlwind journey of a lifetime, and over the course of the night they fall in love. But come morning their adventure takes an unexpected turn for the worst. Can one night can really change how they feel about love…and the course of their lives forever?
The Star- Touched Queen | Roshani Chokshi
My thoughts: I was genuinely surprised to see this book hasn’t better reviews online, because I really enjoyed it when I first read it. It’s true that the world building and the romance were a bit off and had their issues, but Roshani’s writing was absolutely beautiful, and I loved the mythology aspect of the story. I don’t know, I had so much fun getting to know the characters and learning about that world, and though I still have to read the companion novel, I’m super excited to dive back into that world.
Maya is cursed. With a horoscope that promises a marriage of death and destruction, she has earned only the scorn and fear of her father’s kingdom. Content to follow more scholarly pursuits, her whole world is torn apart when her father, the Raja, arranges a wedding of political convenience to quell outside rebellions. Soon Maya becomes the queen of Akaran and wife of Amar. Neither roles are what she expected: As Akaran’s queen, she finds her voice and power. As Amar’s wife, she finds something else entirely: Compassion. Protection. Desire…
But Akaran has its own secrets—thousands of locked doors, gardens of glass, and a tree that bears memories instead of fruit. Soon, Maya suspects her life is in danger. Yet who, besides her husband, can she trust? With the fate of the human and Otherworldly realms hanging in the balance, Maya must unravel an ancient mystery that spans reincarnated lives to save those she loves the most…including herself.
Wintersong | S. Jae-Jones
My thoughts: Though I didn’t love this book as much as I did, I still think it was a solid read and liked it. And there have been very bad reviews about it, let me tell you. I think the problem that most people had with this book was that it was supposed to be a Labyrinth retelling, and it ended up not being it, so many people were disappointed, but since I haven’t watched the movie, I didn’t particularly care about that. The book had its issues, but overall I enjoyed the whole story and characters, and I’m interested to see how the sequel’s going to be.
All her life, nineteen-year-old Liesl has heard tales of the beautiful, mysterious Goblin King. He is the Lord of Mischief, the Ruler Underground, and the muse around which her music is composed. Yet, as Liesl helps shoulder the burden of running her family’s inn, her dreams of composition and childish fancies about the Goblin King must be set aside in favor of more practical concerns.
But when her sister Käthe is taken by the goblins, Liesl journeys to their realm to rescue her sister and return her to the world above. The Goblin King agrees to let Käthe go—for a price. The life of a maiden must be given to the land, in accordance with the old laws. A life for a life, he says. Without sacrifice, nothing good can grow. Without death, there can be no rebirth. In exchange for her sister’s freedom, Liesl offers her hand in marriage to the Goblin King. He accepts.
Down in the Underground, Liesl discovers that the Goblin King still inspires her—musically, physically, emotionally. Yet even as her talent blossoms, Liesl’s life is slowly fading away, the price she paid for becoming the Goblin King’s bride. As the two of them grow closer, they must learn just what it is they are each willing to sacrifice: her life, her music, or the end of the world.
Wild Beauty | Anna-Marie McLemore
My thoughts: I have to admit that I haven’t heard the greatest things about this book, which shocked me because I absolutely loved it. I usually tend to like magical realism novels, though they usually are quite slow and take me a lot of time to read, and this one was no difference. Wild Beauty was the first book I read by Anna-Marie McLemore, and I had such an amazing experience that I want to read her other books. Her writing is so whimsical and beautiful, and I believe all of her books have diverse characters, which is incredible.
I have a review of this book here in case you want to check it out.
Love grows such strange things.
For nearly a century, the Nomeolvides women have tended the grounds of La Pradera, the lush estate gardens that enchant guests from around the world. They’ve also hidden a tragic legacy: if they fall in love too deeply, their lovers vanish. But then, after generations of vanishings, a strange boy appears in the gardens.
The boy is a mystery to Estrella, the Nomeolvides girl who finds him, and to her family, but he’s even more a mystery to himself; he knows nothing more about who he is or where he came from than his first name. As Estrella tries to help Fel piece together his unknown past, La Pradera leads them to secrets as dangerous as they are magical in this stunning exploration of love, loss, and family.
What books did you love that others didn’t really like? Do you have any of the ones I’ve mentioned on your list, too? Let me know in the comments so we can talk about them!
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