Top Ten Pleasant Surprises

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. If you would like to know more information about the meme, or if you’d like to read more Top Ten Tuesday posts, click through the link. This week’s theme is books that you liked more or less than you had expected. I decided to compile a list of books that I was pleasantly surprised with, because I feel like I’ve been ragging on books a little too much lately. Let’s spread the good vibes!

Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake

This was a pleasant surprise because, well, I’m kind of a scaredy-cat. Strike that. I’m a total wimp. So I’ve never read any actual horror books before. I mean, I struggle with the middle-grade “scary” stories, let alone full-blown Stephen King. So I really was not expecting to enjoy this story. Lo and behold, I was so intrigued by this book. Not enough to read the next one in the series, but way more than I thought I would be.

Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys

I did not think I was going to enjoy this book too much because I had already read another Ruta Sepetys book, and I didn’t really enjoy it. I actually ended up DNFing it because I just could not get into it. So my hopes for this one were quite low. Joke’s on me, I absolutely loved this book. I touched my heart and has not left me alone.

The Haters by Jesse Andrews

This book just took me completely by surprise. I did not anticipate caring about these characters nearly as much as I did. I didn’t anticipate really caring about this book at all. But it was so wonderful, and hilarious, and just a pure joy to read.

William Shakespeare’s The Empire Striketh Back by Ian Doescher

Alright. I borrowed this on audiobook because I just wanted to listen to part of it. It sounded so dumb! Star Wars Episode V, but written in the style of a Shakespeare play? Ridiculous! Yes, it was ridiculous, but in the absolute best way possible. This was actually the audiobook that made me realize that I actually enjoy listening to audiobooks. They just need to be well-done audiobooks. I literally was crying I was laughing so hard while listening to this one. 10/10 would recommend.

The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh

This book, like, shook me to my very core. I expected this to be a fun, kind of mysterious read. Never did I expect to be shipping a pair with every fibre of my being. Alas, here I am. Utter trash for The Wrath and the Dawn.

Love Story, With Murders by Harry Bingham

This was another genre surprise. I don’t usually like mystery novels. I just get frustrated. I’m just not a riddle person, and oftentimes I feel like I’m supposed to be solving the riddle of the mystery, and I just don’t care. This story, however, caught me. And I just really came to like the detective, Fiona. Was this book amazing? No. Did it absolutely blow my mind? No. Did I actually finish it while feeling invested in both the plot and characters for the entirety of the book? Yes. Which is rather impressive, considering my track record with mystery novels.

The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness

This one was under-hyped to me. I heard about the concept and thought, “That sounds like the greatest thing ever! I love it.” But then so many people were telling me that it was actually a terrible book that was so disappointing. But I read it anyway, and I’m so glad I did, because I actually thought that it was really clever and really fun. So, you know, don’t take everyone’s opinions for granted. Sometimes they just don’t know what they’re missing.

Audrey (cow) by Dan Bar-el

This is the oral account of a fanciful, poetic cow’s escape from the slaughterhouse. And it is 100% one of the funniest books I have ever read in my life.

The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

I actually started reading a physical copy of this book, and I just couldn’t get into it. And then, on a whim, I decided to borrow the audiobook and I fell in love. I guess I just needed someone reading it to me with an Irish (I think?) accent for me to really get into this story.

Love That Dog by Sharon Creech

I’ve never been so thoroughly torn apart by a book of poetry in my life. You will cry. I read it to my class of eighth graders and they all yelled at me because I made them cry. Tears guaranteed.

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6 thoughts on “Top Ten Pleasant Surprises

      1. I mean, I really enjoyed the movie. My mom hated it, because it dealt with cancer in such an irreverent way, and she really is not a fan of the reality of how teenagers interact with each other. So the f-bombs, fatalistic and sexual humour were too much for her. I’m a jr/sr high school teacher, as well as a product of the internet, so I know that that is how teenagers talk with each other, and I can appreciate that humour for what it’s worth. I mean, it’s got Ron Swanson as a hippy professor dad, the two guys make these super weird home movies…I just really enjoyed the movie. It’s one that has a permanent place on my re-watch circulation

        Liked by 1 person

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