Year end review #2: Reading Disappointments

The DNFs (Did Not Finish)

A big fat zero!  I have always had problems giving up on books, but occasionally I can bring myself to do it. However, this year – this hasn’t happened, despite a few disappointing reads detailed below.

Reasons why?  Some were review copies (mainly for Amazon Vine) that I was obliged to review. In order to give a fair and honest opinion, I kept reading to the end. Others?  Well – I do like a ‘good, bad book’ …

The One That Really Wasn’t Worth the Hype

girl-on-trainThe Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

I reviewed this here.

It has a great premise, but is let down by lazy writing (viz place names etc), and implausible happenings.


The One That I Set Myself Up With to Fail

lifechangingThe Life-Changing Magic of Tidying by Marie Kondo

I reviewed this here.

This woman doesn’t understand proper books and book lovers, but she lost me the moment she anthropomorphised socks…


The One That Was a Gimmick Too Far

zambraMultiple Choice by Alejandro Zambra

I reviewed this one here.

Verdict?
a) Fun at times, but seriously gimmicky
b) A deep comment on life in Chile
c) A mixture of the above

My Answer: c  (6/10)


The Thriller Flop

dear amyDear Amy by Helen Callaghan

I reviewed this here.

I read an early ARC of this debut, and just felt that it wasn’t quite there yet. As the pages went on, it got increasingly far-fetched, and the ending was sudden and contrived.


There were a few other books that I didn’t rate highly as enjoyable reads, like classics by Hesse and Camus – but I am glad to have read them. There are other books that I rated as average at the time of reading, but which have grown on me like Zero K by Don Delillo. This brings me to my…

Flop of the Year – an underdeveloped toilet reference book

marshall-book-of-loud-coverMarshall: The Book of Loud by Nick Harper

I reviewed this here.

It doesn’t go up to 11 – Nuff said!


Which books have disappointed you the most this year?

11 thoughts on “Year end review #2: Reading Disappointments

  1. Harriet Devine

    I totally agree about the Girl on the Train. Couldn’t understand its popularity. I have several DNFs and one was Deborah Levy’s Booker shortlisted Hot Milk – didn’t take to it at all. I’ve also just put aside Chris Pavone’s latest spy thriller The Traveller which I was getting bored with. Life’s too short etc etc

    Reply
  2. AnnaBookBel Post author

    I very nearly put down Hot Milk – but something made me keep on and although I wouldn’t say I enjoyed it, I appreciated a lot of the symbolism in it. I did, however, enjoy the Chris Pavone (although a bit long) – it really picked up later. Totally agree life’s too short etc etc! 🙂

    Reply
    1. Denise

      Oh yes, I didn’t get Hot Milk either. Everyone else on blogs seemed to be raving about it. I found the main character frustratingly under the influence of her mother and it wasn’t really understandable why, considering she was a grown woman.

      Reply
  3. Lizzy Siddal

    Several DNF’s this year, Annabel, but the flop of the year for me was Sarah Perry’s The Essex Serpent. Utterly tedious and so disappointing given the hype. Shame the contents couldn’t match the promise of the beautiful cover.

    Reply
    1. AnnaBookBel Post author

      That’s sitting in my TBR piles – has been since publication – I admit that the thought of reading it has been slightly daunting given everyone else’s reactions – but I am heartened by yours ironically. Perhaps I’ll give it a try during the TBR Dare months…

      Reply
  4. Steerforth

    The Girl on the Train was rubbish – totally implausible and absurdly melodramatic. God knows why it’s so popular. Sabine Durrant’s Lie With Me is far superior.

    Reply

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