I thought that I’d kick off my end of the year series of posts that I’ve planned out with my disappointments. That way, we can build ourselves up to the best of the best at the end! Before you go into the post, I’m going to throw out a quick disclaimer and that is to take my opinions with a grain of salt. My reading tastes are completely different from everyone else’s. In fact, some of the books I disliked or found problematic are some people’s favorite books of the year and that’s okay! Everyone reads differently because everybody’s different. We all grow up with different memories, expectations, beliefs, likes, and dislikes. It’s why one reader can interpret something completely different from another. So if you’re upset that I didn’t love your favorite, don’t be too upset because it’s just my opinion and just as you’re entitled to your own opinion, I am entitled to mine.
I picked this book up right after finishing “The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo” and was so excited to see that my library had it available just a week after its release. I read this book really fast and while everyone else was absolutely loving it, I didn’t really care for it. I was really dragging myself through the second half of the book and I ended up skimming the end. I didn’t connect with any of the characters except Karen. I didn’t feel the romance at all. I didn’t like Billy or Daisy. I know Daisy is written to be an unlikeable character but so was Evelyn Hugo. I love Evelyn Hugo with every fiber of my being but I felt nothing but a strong dislike for Daisy Jones. I don’t think the formatting of the book helped make Daisy as redeemable of a character as Evelyn was. Evelyn was a bad person but we got to see her intentions, we saw her recognize them, we saw her grow, but I personally didn’t see any of that with Daisy. Another controversial opinion is that I didn’t idolize Camila like everyone else and honestly don’t get the praise she was getting. I’m not sure why but when I was reading her relationship with Billy (or whatever the main guy’s name was), it kind of felt toxic. She knew he was emotionally cheating on her…? I don’t know…
I dislike this book with such burning passion which sucks because this book had so much potential. It has a male character who isn’t like every other male character we see. We have characters who ARE NOT in high school. So much, SO much potential but for me, it was a major let down.
This book has no plot, NONE at all. It did absolutely nothing for me. The main character was just horrible. This whole book was full of stereotypes and so much judgement! Penny constantly slut shamed her mother, friends, and threw stereotypes left and right. The writing, my gosh it was so cringe. I felt like the author tried WAY too hard to sound hip? It just came out way too strong and it was unnecessary. In the beginning, I liked Sam. He seemed less distasteful and annoying than Penny. He had this mysterious past and he’s living his life trying to do his best. But after the second half of the book, I just stopped caring for him as well. His character and storyline were just so flat, nothing happened.
I also didn’t feel the romance, at all. There was no tension, nada, nothing. I don’t blame it on the unconventional way their “relationship” unfolded. The text messages didn’t bother me at all. One of my favorite books, “Red White and Royal Blue”, had some relationship development via emails and I loved every single email in that book to the point I nearly tabbed all of them to reread. So it wasn’t the text messages that prevented me from connecting to the romance, it was simply because this book lacked a proper foundation for me to grip onto and care enough to root for them to get together.
If you want to see a more flushed out rant review about this book, check out paperbackdream’s channel on YouTube. She’s got a good one and we actually had the same points.
We Hunt the Flame
This was one of my most anticipated fantasy release this year. The fact that this book was published and got so much press is so important because of all the diversity that went into making it, whether it’s the POC author or the POC characters. Unfortunately, I didn’t really connect with any of the characters. I was hooked for maybe the first quarter of the book but the middle just fell flat for me. It wasn’t the slowness that bothered me but the fact that it felt repetitive and like nothing really happened.
Once again, the romance wasn’t for me. It was so fast and came out of nowhere. There wasn’t that much of a build up for it at all. It was the epitome of insta love.
This book also follows a group of characters and I was looking forward to falling in love with a new group to place in my heart next to my “Six of Crows” gang but unfortunately, I didn’t care for any of them. I found Nazir’s and Altair’s characters interesting but that’s about it. I wasn’t hard core attached to those two either and the other three characters weren’t that memorable either.
The ending was a bit more action packed and gripping so I’m intrigued to see what happens next.
I ended up DNF’ng this book a little over halfway through. It was quite slow and I wasn’t in the mood for a slow book earlier this year. I was itching for a fast read so I ended up putting this book back on the shelf. I wouldn’t say that this was a complete disappointment as I’m still interested in picking this back up one day. I would say it was a semi disappointment because I expected to be immediately sucked in by the plot from what I’ve heard of Novak’s writing and I personally wasn’t. I’m probably going to pick up “Spinning Silver” by Naomi Novak first because I’ve heard more people loving that book and getting sucked into the plot right away.
Serpent and Dove
This book had everything I should love. It was advertised as a saucy, YA romance with an awesome enemies to lovers trope, all of which I am trash for. This book did not deliver. This book is a debut so it’s understandable that it isn’t the greatest piece of work but I still had some problems with it. There was a complete lack of world building. The entire book read like a sequel. The book started off with stealing a ring and the whole function of the ring wasn’t explained until near the end of the book. The writing at some points was choppy and things didn’t flow right. Some characters jumped to conclusions with no background or any hint or build up for us readers to understand how they got to their conclusion. I feel like the author knew these things that the characters did or thought of but didn’t really share with us readers. The romance was also unsatisfying for me. The male character in this book was too soft for this book to truly be an enemies to lovers trope. There was no frustration or any antagonistic feelings for them to truly have been enemies to lovers. They were fundamentally enemies but I feel like they weren’t directly enemies for most of the book. It’s hard to explain it without spoiling the plot of the book. I’ll be posting a review soon where I’ll go more into detail. Overall, the writing and lack of world building really took away from the book for me to truly enjoy it.
The Kiss Quotient
I ended up reading “The Bride Test” before this book and absolutely loved it so I was really excited to go into this book. This book was okay but nothing great. It was a let down for me. I felt like this book didn’t have much of a plot other than just sex or learning about sex or thinking about their next appointment to have sex. I know that’s the plot, but I wanted something more? In “The Bride Test” we got to see Khai’s family and there were multipile elements embeded into the plot line but this book solely focused on the sex which isn’t exactly what I was looking for or really like. Don’t get me wrong, I love myself some smut but I like some other elements in the plot alongside the smut.
There were also decisions made in this book that just confused me and felt contradictory. For example, Michael would be thinking that he’s moving too fast for Stella and in the next line he’s suggesting to move in together? I don’t know… it didn’t feel right for me. I’m trying not to be too upset over that part of the book though because I know that both of them were going through their own set of feelings for each other which mixed up things and led them to make decisions that weren’t necessarily productive.
I also found the writing to be a bit repetitive. We were constantly reading from Michael about how he doesn’t want to be like his dad in almost every other chapter, but we never got to really learn about his dad until a lot later into the book. By the time his backstory with his dad came up, I didn’t care for it much anymore. I wish the author explored more into his father, it would have added a lot more depth to the plot. I still am happy that I read this book though because I absolutely still love “The Bride Test”. I really got to see how the author’s writing improved with each publication which makes me even more excited for her third release in this series.
Queen of Nothing
This book didn’t do it for me. The ending, which I’m glad for, seemed a bit too much like a Disney channel ending? I didn’t get enough Carden and Jude out of this book and oh my gosh Taryn. I hate Taryn with every fiber in my body and I hated her role in this book. And is it just me or was this book scattered with unexplained plot holes? I will stand with my initial prediction that the second book in this series will forever be my favorite of the trilogy. I think the main reason it was kind of a let down is because it was too short.
What are some of your 2019 disappointments?