Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Didn’t Like But Don’t Regret Reading



Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s topic is books I didn’t like but don’t regret reading. I’d normally avoid a topic like this because I don’t enjoy being overly negative, but I know that you guys like snark and unpopular opinions, so let’s give it a shot.

Normally, I’d stop reading a book I didn’t like, but I’ll push through a book if it’s culturally relevant. These are all books I pushed through. Some of them are classics, and some of them are books that got a lot of hype. I didn’t like them, but I don’t regret reading them.





Books I Didn’t Like But Don’t Regret Reading







This is so tedious. What is even happening? Can I please stop reading now?





1. The Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man – James Joyce
2. Mrs. Dalloway – Virginia Woolf
3. Atlas Shrugged – Ayn Rand









I was promised scary stuff. Where is all the scary stuff?! Why is there no scary stuff?!





1. The Phantom of the Opera – Gaston Leroux
2. Dracula – Bram Stoker
3. Frankenstein – Mary Shelley









The terrible writing is making my brain hemorrhage, but everybody loves this book for reasons.







1. Twilight – Stephenie Meyer
2. Divergent – Veronica Roth
3. City of Bones – Cassandra Clare
4. Fifty Shades of Grey – EL James









I'd like a brief word with the committee who listed this book for a major award.







1. . . . And Now Miguel - Joseph Krumgold
2. The Girl Who Drank the Moon - Kelly Barnhill
3. Poor Things - Alasdair Gray
4. A Wrinkle in Time Trilogy - Madeleine L'Engle
5. Travels In Vermeer: A Memoir - Michael White









So much hype; so much "Meh."







1. Between the World and Me - Ta-Nehisi Coates
2. The Girls - Emma Cline
3. Shadow and Bone - Leigh Bardugo
4. If I Stay - Gayle Forman
5. Cinder - Marissa Meyer
6. Bird Box - Josh Malerman









Stephen King, I love you, but sometimes I wonder if you're even trying.





1. Insomnia
2. Song of Susannah









Margaret Atwood, I love you, but you get ridiculous sometimes.





1. The Heart Goes Last
2. Angel Catbird









Can I claim bragging rights for slogging through these "very important" books?







1. Fight Club - Chuck Palahniuk
2. The Power of Myth - Joseph Campbell
3. The Lover - Marguerite Duras
4. Crow: From The Life and Songs of the Crow - Ted Hughes
5. Black Boy - Richard Wright
6. Treasure Island - Robert Louis Stevenson






What is a book that you disliked but don't regret reading? Is your favorite book on my list? Do you hate me now?













57 comments:

  1. Ha, great list! I'm sorry you didn't like Cinder, I thought that whole series was very good! I liked Twilight the first time I read it, but when I read it now, it's painful. But, I'm glad I read it because it was one of the first new things I read after college and it kind of got me back into reading for fun.

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    1. I never liked Twilight, but I’m glad it exists. It created so many new bookworms. There can never be too many of those.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  2. I never gave up on Twilight because the books started so slow. Now, I'd DNF it for that reason. Dracula was so dull! I DNFed Insomnia and City of Bones and I hated Fight Club!

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    1. Sorry, I meant 'nearly'. I'm having one of those days!

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    2. I totally agree about Dracula. Who knew that vampire hunting involved so much tedious paperwork?

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  3. I loved your headings - how great! I didn't like the movie Fight Club, which I watched with my husband, so I never even considered reading the book. Yes, doesn't it seem like sometimes King isn't trying? And that's so painful to say because I LOVE him. Oh well, sometimes the truth has to be said :)

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    1. King is one of my favorite authors, but he badly needs an editor who will tell him when his books are too long or too stupid.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  4. I don't think it's a coincidence that the scary-not scary books are all old.

    I read Phantom and thought it was okay.

    I read The Lover and thought it was slightly better than okay. But I had already seen the film, and I'm not sure if that helped or hurt. Duras lived in France as an adult and was involved in the French Resistance during World War II.

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    1. I was forced to read The Lover for school, so that probably has a lot to do with me not liking it. School is very good at ruining books.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  5. Someone forced me to read an Ayn Rand book and just... why? I'm just not smart enough, I guess. I feel the same about some of Stephen King's books! Haha! I love some and others just leave me baffled.

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    1. I had to read a Rand book for school—I think it was called Anthem? I didn’t hate the first Rand book I read, but Atlas Shrugged had all these tedious speeches, and I couldn’t handle it. I just wanted it to be over.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  6. I LOVED Dracula and Frankenstein! Isn't it funny how different people react to different books?
    If I Stay is one YA I thought I might like to read...now not so sure.
    Your headings tickled me :):)

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    1. Dracula and Frankenstein are classics for a reason. I’m probably in the minority for not liking them. A lot of people love If I Stay, but I thought it was sappy.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  7. Bahaha! I’ve read all 4 books in your “the writing is bad” section. And liked most of them. (And had a I-Hate-Myself-For-Loving-You relationship with a couple.) I’ve heard a lot of similar comments about Ayn Rand and yet my sister loved Atlas Shrugged. I have no desire to even try.

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    1. The plot of Atlas Shrugged isn’t bad, but the massive multi-page speeches that the characters give is what ruined it for me. Some of the “heroes’” actions also made me cringe.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  8. Haha, I do love the snark :D From your list I did like Cinder and Shadow and Bone, but I do agree that they have their issues. I did think they got better as the series progressed, but then again you shouldn't continue series you feel meh about just because of hype :)

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    1. I’ve heard that both of those series get better, but I have so many unread books sitting around that I don’t want to try with “meh” books.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  9. I felt the same way as you did about Cinder and Shadow and Bone.
    My TTT: https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2018/05/15/top-ten-tuesday-159/

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    1. That’s good. I’m not the only black sheep. :)

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  10. Yes to the snark. :) And oh my gosh I've heard that about Ayn Rand, although I'll be honest I have no idea what those books are about. I did (kinda) like Divergent *hides* and dracula- yeah not very scary...

    Treasure Island I can never seem to get through and it's like A) a classic and B) pirates- what is my deal? Just can't seem to do it...

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    1. Treasure Island sounds like it would be a brilliant book, but it’s so boring!

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  11. I love all of your different category reasons. I'm totally with you on Shadow and Bone, it's so disappointing. And I cannot agree more regarding A Wrinkle in Time! I never made it through the book completely, so you get bragging rights for finishing it. I was pretty surprised at how non-scary Dracula and Phantom of the Opera were as well. I still like them somewhat, but very disappointing overall. Great list!

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    1. I read the first 3 Wrinkle in Time books, and they just kept getting worse. I wanted to read all of them because they’re classics, but I felt like I was wasting my time.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  12. 100000% with you on Portrait of the Artist and Atlas Shrugged. But oh man I love the Wrinkle In Time books and Between The World And Me kicked me right in the gut. Twilight is my secret shame but I know it's objectively terrible.

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    1. Portrait of the Artist is probably one of the worst books I ever read. Why are college professors so obsessed with it? It’s just difficult and boring. (That’s probably why they’re obsessed with it.)

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  13. So, like, yeah, I love Gayle Foreman. I will say that I liked the sequel to If I Stay more than the first book, but I still loved it.

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    1. If I Stay is the only Gayle Foreman book I’ve read. Maybe the others are better?

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  14. I vaguely remember liking Portrait of an Artist, but my memory of the book doesn't go any further than that. Now I'm a little nervous to pick it up again in case I hate it. LOL!

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

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    1. I was forced to read it twice, and I’m never picking it up again!

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  15. Oh no, Bird Box! I totally thought that was worth the hype! Oddly, The Girls seems like a book that everybody hates (I thought it was ok). Where is the hype for that one coming from?

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    1. I didn’t hate The Girls, but I didn’t think it lived up to the hype. I think the hype came from the publisher. The author is young, and the publisher paid over two million dollars for the book. Young authors who get tons of money also seem to get tons of hype.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  16. What makes you not regret reading them?

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    1. Mostly because people talk about them constantly. I can understand the conversation because I’ve read the (terrible) books.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  17. Glad I'm not the only one who thought Treasure Island was a slog - always thought it was because I read it as an actual child though, hoped it would be better on a second reading?

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    1. I read it as an adult. There’s no way I could have gotten through it as a kid.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  18. Great picks. Your captions for each category made me laugh. I agree with you on most of these. My list would also include Far From the Madding Crowd and Waiting for Goddot, both of which bored me to tears.

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    1. I haven’t read either of those, but Far From The Madding Crowd is on my list of classics I want to read someday. I hope I like it more than you did!

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  19. We're going to have to disagree about A Wrinkle in Time and Cinder but I had to read Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man in high school and I still have nightmares. I love your heading titles!

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    1. Portrait of the Artist is so bad! It was forced upon me twice by school, and I didn’t understand it either time.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  20. Your list totally made me laugh out loud. I especially loved the Margaret Atwood section. The Heart Goes Last definitely got completely off track and ridiculous half way through!

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    1. YES! I love Atwood’s older books, but her new stuff is awful.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  21. Hahahaha finally someone listed 50 Shades! I couldn't understand why it was so hyped! The sex scenes aren't an excuse ><

    I still look forward to reading Cinder though haha

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    1. I hope you like Cinder! I read 50 Shades when the hype was highest, and I was completely baffled. It’s poorly written, and the characters are stupid and creepy.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  22. The only ones I really read and liked a lot are DIvergent and Shadow and Bone- but I have also wondered if I'd like them if I read them now, and I suspect not, at least for the latter. Divergent was just fun for me hah. Fifty Shades is the actual worst, Idk how anyone likes it tbh. And I am so glad to have zero plans to read pretty much any of the rest of the books on your list hah. Great choices!

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    1. Divergent is a fun, escapist series, but I didn’t think it was any more special than all the other YA dystopias that were coming out at the time. There were a billion similar books. I don’t know why people latched on to that one.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  23. Great list! Although I think it's interesting that you were told that Frankenstein was supposed to be scary. I feel like that's Hollywood's fault, they butchered what was a really fascinating and beautiful story.

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    1. It probably was Hollywood’s fault. I also kind of remember my professor calling it a horror story before we started reading it? If my memory is correct, the professor was badly misinformed about what “horror” is.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  24. Love how you broke this up. I will say there are some I did like on your list but other I totally get. Great picks!

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  25. Haha! I love all of your sub categories and agree with you on a lot of your selections, although I did enjoy Cinder and that whole series.

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    1. I seem to be in the minority with not liking Cinder. I’ve tried a few fairytale retellings and didn’t like any of them.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  26. Nooo I love City of Bones.πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ But honestly some books are so weirdly massively hyped?!? Like I have completely MEH feelings to Divergent now, but I used to love it in my early teens haha. And there are a few classics I'm glad I have read but I totally hated them. Or don't remember them. I remember reading Great Expectations and feeling proud I have buuut no clue what it's about now.πŸ˜‚

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    1. I considered putting Great Expectations on this list, but then I thought that the list was long enough. Also, Great Expectations is far from the worst classic I was forced to read. There have been many other, more horrible books.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  27. I love your Not Scary category! I've read all three and they're about my level of horror for wimps!
    My addition to the list would be The Catcher In The Rye which I did not get the point of at all, and any Booker Prize winners for at least the last decade. I've learned if a book wins the Booker, I'm highly unlikely to enjoy reading it!

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  28. I'll admit I liked If I Stay a great deal more than anticipated. That said, it's certainly NOT a favorite novel. :)

    Thanks so much for visiting Finding Wonderland, AJ! Happy weekend - and reading.

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  29. I loved Cinder and A Wrinkle in Time, though I'm not sure if I'd enjoy WIT now. I liked Divergent & Mrs. Dalloway okay. Otherwise, I'm with you on all of the ones on here that I read.

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  30. Oh man, Treasure Island was sooo boring. I loved Dracula and Frankenstein but I didn't go in expecting scary stuff - if I did I can totally understand your disappointment. I am a guilty lover of Twilight, Divergent and City of Bones. I know, I know. I kind of wish I didn't like them, but I do and well that's that xD I even LOVE Twilight DD: I can understand the Grisha trilogy being meh but CINDER?! DD: (too each their own though ;)

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