Saturday, November 10

Embracing my Negativity: The Books That Disappointed me in 2018

I had a fairly good reading year in 2018. I read a lot less than I'm used to reading but I don't think there was a single book that I hated? So I'll take that as a win! There were, however, quite a few books that fell just short of my expectations and left me feeling very disappointed. These are all books I was SUPER excited for that just... were fine.

The Women in the Walls by Amy Lukavics
Daughters Unto Devils was brilliantly horrific and creepy and just the perfect Halloween read last year. So I figured I'd follow it up this Halloween with another Lukavics novel but this one just wasn't as good. Don't get me wrong - it was still creepy and mind bendy. But the ending fell flat and it felt a lot more rushed than Daughters Unto Devils had. If I had read this one first I probably would have loved it but it just didn't meet my expectations so now I'm sad. 

The Midnight Star by Marie Lu
Ooh boy. Was there ever a more disappointing end to a series. I'm obviously gonna blame myself a little here because I know there are people who loved this book but I just don't see it. The first book was such brilliant anti-heroing, but this book set out to redeem... everyone? And gave us a way sappier ending than I was anticipating or just plain wanted. This by the way happens to me a lot with Lu's books it seems because the Legend series hit me the exact same way! 

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
This is a classic. A CLASSIC. Nearly everyone loves it, the movie came out and nobody would stop talking about how brilliant it was so I picked it up and just got bored. I loved the references obviously - it's always fun to see future generations react to our culture. Although I did feel SUPER old in places. But I genuinely didn't care about any of the characters or about the plot. As a sort of time capsule this works great, as an actual entertaining read - for me it didn't. 

Leah on the Offbeat by Becky Albertalli
Easily my favourite of the books on this list but still. OK so Simon is obviously a lot to live up to. But Leah annoyed me a lot by being a hypocrite (very few things I dislike as much as hypocrisy) and by just not understanding other people's stances on coming out when they feel ready and with whatever label or no label that feels right to them. It also made me retroactively mad at her for her behaviour in Simon vs. 

Hello Stranger by Lisa Kleypas
Lisa Kleypas is fully my favourite historical romance author ever. She gave us the Wallflowers series which is basically a gift to this world and I always love her books. Except - Hello Stranger not so much? It was a bit forgettable and whilst I definitely enjoyed it as I was reading it, I know I'm unlikely to re-read it over and over again (as I definitely have with her Wallflowers books - seriously dozens of times). But I will never lose faith in her writing and am so very excited for her next book.

Let's Chat
What were some of your reading disappointments in 2018 - or were there some really good surprises to offset all this negativity? 


  1. Totally agree on Leah on the Offbeat. I feel like for the most part though, it was just so incredibley boring??? Like Simon vs. was so full of wit and this one lacked anything to make it really stand out.

  2. Quote: "The first book was such brilliant anti-heroing, but this book set out to redeem... everyone? And gave us a way sappier ending than I was anticipating or just plain wanted."
    Haha, I hear you. I mean, not about this particular book, which I haven't read...but sappy endings are a drag. You can't have a forced HEA, especially in the fantasy genre. Those are brutal worlds, with (more often than not) brutal characters...redemption seems a cop-out.

  3. Ugh yes I'm completely with you on Midnight Star. When I read it, I loved it but when I tried to write a review, I just couldn't so I decided to wait a bit and now when I think back on the series, it's my least favorite. Like you, I LOVED Adelina and her role and I would have been happy with ending up with her still very dark. But then again it fits so perfectly with the ending of the second book that was magnificent. I don't know, I have such conflicted feelings about that book which is probably why I still haven't written a review. What I really need to do is a series reread.

    Laura @BlueEyeBooks

  4. I don't know if I was that happy about the way Lu ended the Young Elites, but I didn't hate the book. I thought it was kind of bittersweet, because THAT happened after the character had redeemed herself. I cried. I overall enjoyed Leah, but it was because I liked being back in that world. The romance bothered me. I hated that Albertalli ruined something good to make that ship happen.

  5. Leah was such a disappointment! One of my biggest disappointments was Mirage. It just didn't live up to my expectations.

    Amber Elise @ Du Livre

  6. Oh no, I'm so sorry you didn't enjoy Women in the Walls and The Midnight Star! Especially the latter, since I know TYE is such a dark series and now I'm worried about the sappy ending :/

    Tasya // The Literary Huntress


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