Everyone and their brother has done this tag, so I’m late to the game here, but it’s just such a good tag. I had to play, too. This was created by TheBookArcher over on YouTube. Before I get started, keep in mind that it’s only my opinion. You’re not stupid for liking anything that you like. I’m not superior. If we disagree, that’s okay. It’s what makes the world go round. Now let’s get opinionated!
A popular book or series that you didn’t like. Probably the one I would get lynched for is Cinder by Marissa Meyer. I expected it to be more science fiction and less fantasy, and it was definitely more fantasy. I didn’t care for the characters or the romance. I thought the world-building was incredibly weak. Therefore I only read the first book and didn’t pursue any of the others, and I’ve watched people devour this series while just asking myself… why? I don’t see the appeal.
A popular book or series that everyone else seems to hate but you love. The Southern Reach Trilogy by Jeff VanderMeer. I see a lot of disappointed reviews with this one. Even people who loved the first book seemed to turn against the series with the second one. Whereas I loved every second of it. I have no complaints. I realize the second book was a shift in tone, but I feel like I understood what VanderMeer was trying to accomplish with it. Plus, Control. How can you not love Control?
A love triangle where the main character ended up with the person you did NOT want them to end up with (warn for spoilers) OR an OTP that you don’t like. Here’s an entirely different opinion that people won’t like: this is a very young-adult-centric question. I do read some young adult, but no book that I read is with the intention of biting my fingernails over who the girl will pick. I like character-driven stories, and secondarily I like good plots. If I care about whether or not two characters hook up, the author usually has set it up that they will. That’s why I care, because the author has given me the impetus to care. So generally that author’s romantic choices don’t piss me off, and if they do, then the whole book pisses me off, because they’re bad at conveying what their characters want or need.
A popular book genre that you hardly reach for. Well, I think I just answered that. Any YA with a heavy slant toward romance. It can be any genre, and if the summary describes a special girl with “and she meets a boy” somewhere a beat later, I don’t want it.
A popular or beloved character that you do not like. Davos and Jorah from A Song of Ice and Fire by George R.R. Martin. Davos, because for some reason he is deeply beloved and I found him to be boring. The interesting parts of his chapters belong to Stannis, and it really felt like he was just a vehicle to give Stannis a voice when Martin could’ve just given Stannis his own chapters.
Jorah seems to be someone fans of the show have embraced, but he always struck me as smarmy in the books. So that when there’s a reveal about his character, I wasn’t surprised. I felt vindicated if anything. I see people defend him, and it always makes me wince. It might have something to do with the fact that the younger characters are very young in the books, whereas they aged them up in the show. That does make a difference.
A popular author that you can’t seem to get into. Robert Heinlein. He’s considered the father of so many science fiction tropes that we take for granted, but his writing was nothing special and his characters, especially the way he portrays women, leave a lot to be desired. I’ve concluded that just because someone did it first doesn’t mean they did it best, and I’m sorry that I can’t forgive him his quirks more.
A popular book trope that you’re tired of seeing. Stuffed Into The Fridge. Women, men, children, pets, anything that gets abused or murdered for the sake of giving a character “reasons to fight”. It’s usually a character we’re told is going to retire in a couple of days or that we see just long enough to established the main hero really cares about them deeply. We don’t feel that; we’re told it. Telling and not showing is bad enough, but then before we’re even fully invested, this person or animal is kicked to death in front of us so that the story can begin. It’s considered a misogynist trope, but I’ve seen the reverse done, too. Because apparently that’s progress? It’s so lazy. Please stop doing this, writers.
A popular series that you have no interest in reading. Twilight by Stephanie Meyer. I know you probably made a face and said to yourself, “of course, you don’t want to read that.” Listen, there was a time when everyone was reading this, and it was very popular. It was the series to read or you were a total square. I knew then I didn’t want to read it, because it seemed too twee for me. Then suddenly everything reversed, and it was the popular thing to hate. You weren’t one of the cool kids unless you hated this series, and people were reading it so they could accurately hate it. And I realized I didn’t want to read it for that reason either. I don’t hate Twilight. I don’t love it. I don’t really have an opinion other than it’s not my type of book. I’m content with that.
The saying goes “The book is always better than the movie”, but what movie or T.V. show adaptation do you prefer more than the book? Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk. But even Palahniuk himself thinks this is true. It wasn’t a bad book, but it was a pretty phenomenal movie that’s remained a favorite for me. It outshines its source material. Also, it was his first novel, and those are always going to be slightly shaky and imperfect.
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