Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday: Books That Were a Chore to Read

As a book blogger, I sometimes choose poorly (though I've gotten much more selective and better at picking books to review), yet I always finish the book because I agreed to read and review it. Sometimes, I end up really liking the book ... and other times, it's a struggle the whole.way.through. If I'm reading a book I haven't accepted for review, if I don't like it, I quit reading—sometimes immediately, and other times after struggling for a while.

This week's Top Ten Tuesday topic is all about those books that we struggle with. I'm going to split my list of Books That Were a Chore to Read into several sections: books I ended up liking, books that were OK, books that I struggled to finish, and books I gave up on. Because why make it simple, right?

I'm limiting this to the last six months—I could name a whole bunch of books that fit this category from my college and early blogging days! (Clicking the book's title will take you to my review ... if there is one!)

Books I Ended Up Liking

The Elusive Miss Ellison by Carolyn Miller. Oh, how I struggled with this one at first! I just could not get into the rhythm of the writing. But then I finally did ... and I ended up loving the story!

Bellweather Rhapsody by Kate Racculia. I was so confused for the first 10% of the novel. The only reason I kept reading was I was stuck in the backseat of my parents' van for six hours as we traveled to and from Ikea (which is a truly magical place). But once I figured out who was who (and once a girl disappeared, which really started the action of the novel), I couldn't put it down. So many twists! I'm still waiting for someone I know to read it so we can discuss.

By Your Side by Kasie West. The first third of this novel is rough. It's soooooo boring. But the rest of the book? Amazing. I finished it knowing that of course I want to read more of West's books.

Books That Were OK

The Captain's Daughter by Jennifer Delamere. This book was actually really easy to read at first, but then it slowed way down, and I struggled to stay engaged. I really enjoyed parts of the novel, but other parts were hard to get through.

High as the Heavens by Kate Breslin. I think part of my problem with this book is that my expectations were just so high after reading—and loving—Breslin's Not by Sight. Also, the first half of the book is filled with flashbacks, and that kept the story from moving along as quickly as I would have liked. This is a good book; it's just not a book that I connected with.

Books That I Struggled to Finish

Grounded Hearts by Jeanne M. Dickson. I liked plenty of things about this novel, but I did not—even for one second—buy the romance. It seemed totally based on lust, and it never went deeper than that.

The Versions of Us by Laura Barnett. This book has a Sliding Doors vibe, so I thought I'd love it. (I'm an idiot: in my head, I loved Sliding Doors. I watched it again about a month ago and realized it's a terrible movie.) The problem is the two main characters, Jim and Eva, are terrible people. And I have a hard time reading books when I can't get behind the protagonists.

Books I Gave Up On

Persuading Annie by Melissa Nathan. This is supposed to be a modernization of Jane Austen's Persuasion, and I love Austen adaptations, so this should've been the book for me. I didn't make it beyond the first 15 pages. It's crass, profane, and insipid.

Bridget Jones's Diary by Helen Fielding. I really like Bridget Jones's Diary the movie. Hugh Grant and Colin Firth are the perfect Daniel Cleaver and Mark Darcy. But the book? Can't do it. I gave it 57 pages (yes, I just checked my Kindle), thinking that surely it would get better. Nope. I can't stand the Bridget of the book. So I quit reading ... and watched the movie again.

A Spy's Devotion by Melanie Dickerson. I really, really wanted to like this book. I love Dickerson's medieval romances, and I'm always eager to get my hands on her next book. But this regency-set romance just did not hold my attention. I finally quit about halfway through.

Have you read any of these books? What did you think? And what books have you had trouble finishing?


  1. Very interesting post. I have not read any of these books.

    1. Thanks, Suzanne! I would recommend the first three books on the list :-)


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