(Due to internet issues, my Monday blog post had to be moved to today. Thank you for your patience.)
Okay, so I was nominated for this little thing called the “Unpopular Book Opinions” tag by Jessica over at Simple Scribbles, soooo you get this instead of my normal Thursday blog post (don’t worry, it’ll be fun!).
Basically, when you do the Unpopular Book Opinions tag, you answer a series of questions about your less-than-popular opinions/feelings about certain books, genres, and authors. Then, you tag someone else and they can have the joy of doing it too! Let’s dive in, shall we?
A popular book/series I didn’t like: The Finisher
I know I’ve complained about this book once before, but I just have to bring it up again. I don’t know if it’s considered popular or not, but I strongly dislike it. Some of the reviews on Amazon side with me, while some say that they liked it (but even some of those admit that it is confusing and there is a major plot point that is overlooked).
When I got this, the synopsis on the back made it sound great, the cover looked awesome, and the tagline (“They don’t want you to know the truth”) grabbed me and pulled me in. But man, all of that sets a high (or at least a reasonably attainable) bar that Baldacci completely missed. Whereas the plot has potential, the characters are bland and the storyline gets confusing – and many times, unnecessary. Additionally, the book leads you to believe that the story will be about Vega disrupting her town’s peaceful, sleepy life by bounding into the unknown, dangerous outskirts dubbed the Quag. However, she stays in her village for the entirety of the book, even when she is perfectly capable of escaping to the Quag several times like she wishes. It’s definitely not a book I would read again, or recommend to anyone, for that matter.
A book/series I love that everyone seems to hate: Conspiracy 365
As I thought about this question, I really couldn’t find a novel/series that I love that most other people hate. I mean, there are always people who like a book and those who passionately dislike it. So, I decided to go instead with a book series I love but that no one else seems to have heard of, and that’s Conspiracy 365 by Gabrielle Lord.
The series follows fifteen-year-old Callum Ormond as he has 365 days to figure out this family secret called the “Ormond Singularity” – a little thing that seemingly got his father killed. Also, he’s been framed for the attempted murder of his little sister and his uncle, so he must evade the authorities while trying to prove his innocence. Oh, and there are several big-name criminals that want to get the secret of the Ormond Singularity too, and they’ll do anything to pull ahead in the race – even killing Callum.
It didn’t take very long for me to fall head over heels for this series. It’s so fresh and unique in pretty much every aspect. There are twelve books in the series, and each book encompasses the time span of a single month (hence why the name of each book corresponds with its correlating month). You may think that twelve books would drag on, but not the way Gabrielle Lord does it. Although the series as a whole follows the timeline of a year, she neatly sidesteps most of the boring days and keeps you in the middle of the rapid-fire, fast-paced action. The books were not only funny, but they did a good job of keeping me in suspense. I figured out next to none of the clues before the characters, so I made the revelations and the connections as they did. Plot twists are woven all throughout the story, and they’re surprising and unpredictable. Ms. Lord hit a home run with these books, because they’re pretty much perfect (from this reader’s point of view).
“Conspiracy 365” was even made into a 12-episode miniseries, but sadly, since both the books and the TV show are Australian, not a lot of people seem to know about them. (Also, since the TV show is Aussie, it is not shown anywhere in the U.S. and any DVDs of it won’t work in U.S. DVD players, so I’ve only been able to find and watch one episode on YouTube. I still need to have a talk with Australia about that). However, the books are available in the U.S., so go. Read them. Love them. Come back and chat.
A love triangle where the main character ended up with the wrong person: The Lord of the Rings
(Image taken from Tumblr. All credits go to rightful owner.)
I don’t read a lot of love triangles, and I don’t know if the Eowyn/Faramir/Aragorn thing that was going on in the Lord of the Rings counts as a love triangle, but I don’t like it. I don’t think that Faramir should’ve ended up with Eowyn (however, I don’t think Eowyn was right for Aragorn, either).
Popular genre I hardly reach for: Horror and romance
I don’t like being scared so badly that I can’t sleep and I don’t like mushy, bland, flat, extremely predictable romances.
A popular character I don’t like: Eowyn from The Lord of the Rings
I’m not one to criticize Mr. Tolkien (because he was a genius), but I just never liked Eowyn. I have always found her whiny and irresponsible. Sure, it was noble that she wanted to fight to protect her people, but she would have done much more by staying behind and tending to them. But nooooo, she had to go disobey orders to prove herself, potentially putting her citizens in danger. Good job, Eowyn. Abandon your people to go get all the glory for killing the Witch King of Angmar (which technically was Merry’s doing anyway).
A popular author I can’t seem to get into: John Green
John Green and his brother seem like very nice, funny people, but all John’s books seem to be either A) sad, B) one of those mushy romances I so try to avoid, or C) both sad and mushy.
A popular trope I am tired of seeing: “Strong” Female Hero
I am so tired of YA fiction trying to sell the “Girl is physically stronger than Boy. Girl is best at everything. Girl doesn’t need any help for anything. Girl wins all fights.”
I love well-rounded female characters, but I don’t like when authors try to unrealistically portray women. I don’t know about you, but I probably wouldn’t win a sparring match against a guy. Also, I’m not the best at everything, I need help sometimes, and I rarely beat guys in arm wrestling matches (believe me, I’ve tried). I feel like authors try to push female characters too much and then end up making them annoying and unrelatable. Girls can’t be great at everything. Guys can’t either. It’s a fact of life. Please stop making heroines that are unmatched in strength, skill, and power. It doesn’t work that way.
A popular series I have no interest in reading: The Twilight Saga
Noooooooooope. Never doing it. I don’t care about some pale vampire who sparkles in the sunlight and about the girl he desperately loves but can never have because he’s immortal. I just don’t.
The book is not always better than the movie: Princess Diaries
Okay, so I’ve actually never read the books, but nothing can beat Julie Andrews mattress-surfing and eating corn dogs. Nothing.
Whew, it was good getting all that out! I actually don’t have a particular person to tag, so I tag YOU! If you have a blog, or if you want to do it on some kind of social media, do it! Tell them that Kiara (or Bookends) tagged ya. 😉
So, what are some of your opinions that are less than popular in the reading world? I’d love to hear them! (Just be respectful of each other, ‘kay? 🙂 )