It’s National Book Lover Day so naturally, it’s time for me to rant about disappointing books!
I feel like it’s been a while since I’ve been truly salty for a blog post, and that’s an issue. One day all my bitterness is going to explode from me and I’ll become a husk of dry despondency.
So today, I decided to talk about the 5 most disappointing books I’ve read in 2019 so far!! I forgot it was National Book Lover Day when I wrote this, but honestly I think it’s very fitting that I’d be salty about books on a day meant to celebrate loving books.
(Actually, though, the real reason behind me writing this post is that I tried to write two other blog posts and completely lost motivation for both of them, so I decided to go back to something that will never fail me: Ranting and being salty!! And it’s going to be FUN.)
Before I get on with it, I just wanted to say the biggest, most heartfelt THANK YOU, because I recently reached 2,000 followers on my blog, and… I don’t know how to describe how much that means to me. There are a lot of reasons why this particular milestone is so jaw-dropping to me, but in general, it just means the world to me that you guys support me and the work that I do. I love and appreciate you all endlessly!!!
It absolutely kills me that this book is first on this list, because I think everyone and their grandmother knows I loved Girls of Paper and Fire with my whole heart, and it means the world to me. But this one was just… ugh.
The plot was so very repetitive to me, and it felt like the characters were doing the same thing multiple times without really accomplishing that much. And in the beginning, it wasn’t as obvious because the dynamics of the character !! ! ! !! squad ! !! !! were really fun, but once that went away, it was just like. why am I reading the same thing over and over again.
I’m very conflicted over this book because there were definitely parts where I was emotionally invested, and I actually teared up at a scene??? And I think I actually was moderately enjoying the book, up until the point (maybe about 1/2 or 2/3 through the book) I realized that everything was repeating and it felt like it was GOING NOWHERE.
Also, I love my beautiful girls Lei and Wren, but their relationship was annoying me in this one!! I think it could have been made a lot more complex, but it wasn’t pulled off, and lack of communication in relationships always makes me so irritated to read, and that was the case here too. Look I’m sorry but please stop having sex and have an actual conversation about the things you need to!! Please!!!!
*Note: When I talk about their lack of communication, I meant lack of communication in regards to something in the plot that was a source of conflict for them! I didn’t need or want them to open up about their trauma!
I didn’t hate this book! But I actually spent money on it because I expected a without-a-doubt 5-star book, and I didn’t get that. It was still 3.5 stars, which is not a bad rating at all, but I really thought it would become a new favorite and everything, so that’s what made it so disappointing to me.
I honestly can’t quite put my finger on exactly what about this book was lacking to me?? I think I just didn’t care as much about the characters as I should have been/wanted to be, and that affected my reading experience.
There was just a disconnect from me reading the story and actually experiencing the story, if that makes sense. It was more like I was reading this book about these people going through these things, but not actually being IMMERSED in it. But I still enjoyed the book, and the writing was really pretty and I loved the themes and messages!!
(I really should have known this was going to be a disappointment when I held this book in my hands for the first time and was absolutely disgusted by the rough sandpaper feel of the dust jacket. Why does it FEEL like that!!!)
First of all, I went in expecting Aristotle and Dante, because that’s literally what it had been marketed as, and it was NOTHING like Ari and Dante. The whole book is written through letters? There is no slowburn? Beautiful relationship where?
I mean, hi, I know I like to think any book with “crows” in the title is Six of Crows, but at least I’m not comparing every gay m/m book to Ari and Dante.
Second of all, the age gap in the romance made me SO uncomfortable. It was between a 15 year old and an 18 year old (sophomore and senior repeating the year) and it was just disgusting to me. Homeboy out here not even able to properly drive yet and he’s having sex with someone who would have been a freshman in college!!! Hello!!! No!!!
Third of all, there were just some really weird consent issues and cheating going on, and it was just very much a mess. I really should have read the reviews before picking it up, but I was completely brainwashed by whoever blurbed this and decided to compare it to Ari and Dante. (TERRIBLE marketing.)
This book was just. so poorly written. One of the first thoughts that went through my head when I finished it was, “I, an unpublished barely half-decent writer, could rewrite this and it would end up at least 5x better than what the end result was.” And it may sound mean (because I am mean sometimes) but it’s true!! It was just so badly written!!!
In my opinion, it had pretty terrible pacing: the relationship was badly developed after the characters get together, and the ending was abrupt and felt unfinished. And as a whole, the book just jumped to events with no buildup; I swear, one thing was happening on this page and then literally like three pages later it was completely different.
On top of that, because of the lack of development, I just didn’t feel very connected to the characters. It was a shame because the book was lowkey enjoyable and fluffy, and the romance could have been so much cuter!!! But alas, little high school me could do a lot better.
I never loved Gentleman’s Guide as much as everyone else seemed to, and if I’m honest, I wasn’t exactly surprised that I didn’t like this book. The only reason I was able to get through Gentleman’s Guide was because Monty was hilarious and there was a lot of gayness. And in this book… Felicity was much less funny and there was like one instance of gayness!! I mean she’s aroace, so it’s completely fine that there was only one gay part (I wasn’t even expecting any gay moment because of her being aroace), but usually gayness is what gets me through historical fic books and because that wasn’t present… I struggled.
It was just so monumentally boring. I took 2 weeks to read it, which is SOMETHING considering it was summer and I had a bunch of time to read. It also felt like the actual plot started about halfway through the book? Hi sorry I don’t really want to read 200 boring pages of buildup to get to the Real Meat of the story.
I think my experience with this book can be summed up with this one sentence: Seeing Percy and Monty show up for a total of approximately just 5% of the book made me more excited than the rest of the 95% of the book.
But! Mackenzi Lee is not that great of a person so I’m glad I didn’t like this! My POWER for reading this and hating it right before her whole misgendering blurb debacle!!
what books disappointed you this year? have you read any of these books? do you agree/disagree with any of my opinions? and in celebration of NBL day: what’s a recent book you loved?
p.s. I know I JUST got back into being active on blogs, and I’m so sorry that I’m less active again!! I just started school again and it’s thrown me off a little but I’ll be back!!!