So the other day (as in last year), my friend Steph from No BS Book Reviews (Nobs for short *snicker*), tagged me in the Unpopular Opinion Book Tag, created by The Book Archer. She undoubted thought this was hilarious because in her words, “You have so many unpopular opinions! It’ll be perfect for you!” I won’t pretend that she’s not right, I can’t deny that I am a very niche reader — as picky as they come. But I will not give her the satisfaction of admitting how correct she is.
Also, I filmed this with drinks if watching videos is your thing. Like and subscribe to our channel if you dig it!
A Popular Book/Series You Didn’t Like
There are a lot of books and series that are really popular that I don’t like. Some I down right hate. And I’m perfectly okay with being the Grinch of popular books.
Books my friends loved that I really don’t understand:
These are books that I’ve gone into expecting greatness because most of my friends vouched for them, only to be completely let down. That’s right, I’m blaming my friends’ poor taste in books! The Burning Sky is probably the best example for this because not one of my trusted reviewers disliked it. Usually when I dislike something, there’s a least one lone wolf right there with me to stand in solidarity. But not here. I was all alone! To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before was really weak and very unforgettable (and Peter was gross!). Grasshopper Jungle was just plain weird, confusing and horrible.
Problematic popular series that make me weep for humanity:
These series have themes or tropes that are so problematic, yet still hold some sort of appeal for mainstream readers. I don’t get it. Hush, Hush basically perpetuated rape culture, Shatter Me (Kat | Paul) contained a ship I cannot get behind (also the writing, ugh), and Darkfever has a controlling/abusive love interest cleverly disguised as an Alpha Male. Yet, again, these series are well-loved and have Fandoms that will fight tooth and nail for their glory. I don’t get it.
Throwback series that I read years after they were published and found horrible:
I read both Uglies and The Vampire Diaries around 2009 years after they were originally published. These are books that were super popular when they first came out and were recommended to people post-Twilight. Let me just say that Twilight was better. Uglies’ writing was way too juvenile for my tastes and the made up slang completely did me in. I ended up DNF-ing. Amazingly, I managed to make it to book 4 of the Vampire Diaries series before I gave up, but it was mostly out of morbid curiosity and sheer boredom, and not pleasure. I am very mystified how it’s so popular.
Hyped books that I didn’t like but can see why they have mass appeal:
These are decent books. I can kinda see why so many people like them, but they don’t work for me. Personally, I found them extremely boring and the hype not deserved. An Ember in the Ashes lacked interesting enough characters, Unspoken‘s pacing was too slow and The Martian severely needed aliens.
A Book Series That Everyone Hates, But You Love
I wouldn’t say I love any of these books, but I did enjoy them more than most of my friends. While they were all collectively agreeing on their displeasure, I was the lone wolf in the corner saying, “Hey this isn’t half bad.” That’s not to say these books were perfect or that I didn’t notice some of the issues in the novels. I did, but they just didn’t bother me.
- Origin had really great writing and I enjoyed the tension throughout the novel, but it contains animal death/torture and themes that suggest science=evil.
- I gave Velvet 2 stars, but I didn’t hate it as much as I thought I would. In fact, I rather enjoyed the second half of the novel and how the romance developed despite how cheesy and rough the beginning was.
- The Jewel was cute and I think it would be a great read for tweens transitioning from MG to YA. I also thought Ewing did a great job with dropping bucket loads of anticipation into her writing, but that cliffhanger killed me.
A Love Triangle Where the MC Ended Up With A Person You Didn’t Want Them To End Up With, Or An OTP You Didn’t Like
I’m usually not too picky on ships and who ends up with who, but there are a few books that legitimately make me curse.
- Meridian had a really great love triangle, but there was one love interest who was perfect for the main character. And in the first book, Archlight, it totally looked like she would reconnect with McPerfect, but she chooses the other guy for some reason. To this day, I am still baffled by this.
- Darken the Stars was one of the worse books I read last year. The way the author handled the romance in this book was so offensive and irresponsible. Basically, Kricket falls in love with the series’ primary antagonist and abuser. She “changes” him and it’s so gross I wanted to throw up. I never exactly shipped Kricket with anyone in this series because I found them all to be assholes, but jeez, OF ALL THE CHARACTERS.
- So Meg is probably giving me dagger eyes right now, because you all know she is hardcore #Bellarke, but I do not ship Bellamy and Clarke. I don’t know, guys, I just don’t see it! I think this stems mostly from a deep rooted dislike of Bellamy in the first season–he was a totally selfish jerk!–and my displeasure of Finn’s character arc. I don’t care what anyone says, it was completely out of character and made no sense. I still believe the showrunners made certain choices about Bellamy and Finn to appease fans.
- I never really looked at Peeta as a legitimate love interest. To me, he was always just some boy from District 12 who happened to be in The Hunger Games with Katniss. I saw their relationship more as a friendship than a romantic one, and I was completely blindsided when Katniss never ended up with Gale. Peeta and Katniss? I don’t get it.
A Popular Book Genre You Rarely Reach For
I rarely reach for:
Contemporary – I feel like this genre is suffering from I-want-to-be-the-next-John-Green-or-Rainbow-Rowell syndrome. I usually like “issue books” and tend to reach for them more than the fluffier feel-good contemporaries, but I also feel like the genre has become overwhelmed with them. Especially since many of them seem like they are just riding a “trend.”
New Adult – NA generally has a lot of tropes I don’t like. Plus, most NA books are contemporary, which brings me back to the other genre I don’t read. It’s like a double whammy of NOPE. Occasionally, I do read some NA my friends are raving about like Easy and Unteachable, both of which really surprised me. NA does seem to finally be branching out to Fantasy and Sci-Fi, so I’ll be interested to see how this goes!
A Popular Beloved Character That You Didn’t Like
Tris from Divergent – I never could seem to really connect with Tris. I’m not sure why that really is… maybe all the angst from Insurgent? I don’t know. Anyway, let’s just say the ending to Allegiant greatly pleased me.
Barrons from Fever – I do not see the appeal with this guy. He’s abusive and treats Mac like shit. Why should I like him? Oh because he eventually changes as the series goes on and decides to treat people like human beings? Yeah, no.
A Popular Author You Can’t Seem To Get Into
Rainbow Rowell – I have read all of her books and I don’t see what’s so special about her writing. It just doesn’t mesh well with me. What’s interesting is that her most popular books, Eleanor & Park and Fangirl, I actually disliked the most while her least popular ones, Attachments and Landline, I enjoyed a lot more. But still not enough for me to continue on with Simon and Baz. I’m getting off this train of suck.
Cassandra Clare – What to say? Clare is just not for me. At all. I have read 6 of her books and I know for sure, she is not a writer for me. Her characters and plot are re-hashed and re-vamped versions of her former books and there’s not much originality between them. How many times will she re-write Jace, Clary and Alec? HOW MANY? What makes this even more hilarious is that Meg can’t seem to stop reading them.
A Popular Trope You’re Tired Of Seeing
Alpha Males – I haven’t read a lot of books containing Alpha Males. Maybe a handful. But what I have read, I never seem to like. For the most part it seems like a convenient way for the love interest to push around the heroine, without being labeled as abusive. And people swoon over these guys. However, if we were to see some of the same relationships in YA, we would be calling it a an abusive relationship. Awww, double standards.
Love Triangles – Sometimes these can be really well-written. Other times they completely undermine the heroine’s character growth and the novel becomes a pissing contest between whose dick is better and bigger than the others. Case and point: Snow Like Ashes.
A Popular Series You Have No Interest In Reading
There’s not really a series I won’t at least try. There have been a lot of books I’ve said I wouldn’t read, but ended up enjoying greatly (hello, Seven Realms series!). So this section will be Popular Series You Have No Interest In Returning To:
I read The Giver right before the movie released and maybe I’m too old to appreciate that story. Most people read it when they were in elementary school, before Dystopian is what it is today. And it wasn’t a horrible book. It’s a very quick read and I can appreciate it’s finer points, but eh, I don’t think I’m interested enough to continue on with the series.
My friends keep telling me that The Elemental Trilogy gets better with each book, but it is never, ever, ever going to happen.
I read the The Selection out of curiosity. I just had to figure out why it was a NY Times Bestseller. I still don’t get it because the book isn’t good. Ah well. At least we all can agree that Epic Reads did a bang up job with The Selection Recap with Dolls.
Fallen is one of those books that I question why it was written and so, therefore, I choose to pretend more books do not exist.
(Bonus: John Green’s books.)
The Saying Goes “THE BOOK IS ALWAYS BETTER THAN THE MOVIE,” But What Movie/Show Adaptation Do You Prefer More Than The Book?
The 100 – I’ve heard the books are vastly different from the TV show and nowhere near as good. The Recaptions have a good break down on how it differs. The first season of the show kind of follows the book a bit, which is interesting because IMO it’s also the weakest season. The second and third season does its own thing and shows remarkable improvements.
Divergent – While I enjoyed the first book, there were times when it did drag on. This is mostly because Veronica Roth saves most of her action for the final 90% of her books. So the movie really helps with those and it’s nice to see some of the descriptions of the factions really come to life. I found the movie a lot more entertaining than the book.