Top Ten Tuesday: Characters I Just Didn’t Click With

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Today’s Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by the Broke and the Bookish, is: Ten Characters I Just Didn’t Click With.

Taken

1) Shannon from Taken by Dee Henderson. I just found everything about her so completely off-putting that I ended up DNF-ing the book.

The Murderer's Daughter

2) Grace from The Murderer’s Daughter by Jonathan Kellerman. I didn’t hate her, but I didn’t really care about her. I think she often did things contradictory to her character development and I just didn’t really care enough about her to ever get really invested in this story.

Luckiest Girl Alive

3) Ani from Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll. She was just all around unlikable.

The Dare (The Bet, #3)

4) Grandma Nadine from The Dare by Rachel Van Dyken. One of those characters that just drove me crazy every single time she was in a scene.

The Heartbreakers (The Heartbreak Chronicles)

5) Stella from The Heartbreakers by Ali Novak. I thought she was such a brat and she drove me crazy.

Emmy & Oliver

6) Emmy from Emmy & Oliver by Robin Benway. She was kind of a brat sometimes, but she had less brat-like moments, too. Overall, I just never really connected with her character.

The Wrong Side of Right

7) Kate from The Wrong Side of Right by Jenn Marie Thorne. She got a little better as the book went on, but for the first half of the book she just drove me crazy.

Just One Day (Just One Day, #1)

8) Willem from Just One Day by Gayle Foreman. I have zero patience for his gypsy lifestyle.

I guess I’m just going with a top 8 for now. I’m sure I’ll realize ones I forgot after I read some other lists. What characters didn’t you click with? Were you un-clickable with any of my choices?

Most Disappointing Books of 2015 So Far

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Since tomorrow’s Top Ten Tuesday is going to be focused on the top ten books I’ve read in 2015 so far, I thought today I’d focus on the most disappointing books. These aren’t going to necessarily be the lowest rated books (though most of them are), but also ones that I was looking forward to and felt let down by.

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Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard. The cover is so intriguing. The reviews were glowing. This was probably my most anticipated read of the year and it was…blah. The pacing was slow, the characters were not well-developed, and I was just bored. The link leads to my spoiler filled review if you want more specifics, but this book was a big disappointment for me. The saving grace was the final action sequence and the ending was interesting enough that I MIGHT read the next book.

A Thousand Pieces of You (Firebird, #1)

A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray. Another pretty cover that got my hopes up. I honestly can’t remember much about this book other than I was really looking forward to it and found it pretty boring. And forgettable, apparently.

Vendetta (Blood for Blood, #1)

Vendetta by Catherine Doyle. I’ve seen almost nothing but 4 or 5 star reviews on Vendetta and I just can’t understand it. This book was just absurd. It was unbelievable and over the top and the writing was kind of immature.

P.S. I Still Love You (To All the Boys I've Loved Before, #2)

P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han. I really enjoyed the first book in this duology, but I found this one really underwhelming. I felt it tried to be too many things and because of that lacked focus. The pacing was choppy and the writing was uneven. I thought the whole thing felt like little kids trying to be grown-ups and it made a lot of the dialogue cringe-worthy to me.

Luckiest Girl Alive

Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll. While the book got better as it went along, it was nowhere near as good as I wanted it to be. The main character was very unlikable and not in a fun “I love to hate her” kind of way. I’ve heard this referred to as “this year’s Gone Girl” and that is exactly why I hate book comparisons.

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The Magician’s Lie by Greer Macallister. Everything about this sounded like it would be the kind of book that’s perfect for me. But it wasn’t. I felt like I was supposed to be tricked along the way and shocked at the ending. However, I guessed the ending long before it was revealed and found much of the story leading up to it to be slow and drawn out. This was not the mind-bending surprise I was hoping for.

The Wrong Side of Right

The Wrong Side of Right by Jenn Marie Thorne. Probably my most anticipated book after Red Queen and it ended up being just ok for me. I’ve seen pretty much nothing but perfect reviews on it, but a good deal of it really annoyed me. I pretty much hated the first quarter or so of it and then it slowly got better. The main character drove me nuts for much of the story, as well.

What about you? What books have you found most disappointing this year? Do you agree with any of my choices? Or did you love any of the ones that disappointed me?

Review: The Wrong Side of Right by Jenn Marie Thorne

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Synopsis from Good Reads:

Kate Quinn’s mom died last year, leaving Kate parentless and reeling. So when the unexpected shows up in her living room, Kate must confront another reality she never thought possible—or thought of at all. Kate does have a father. He’s a powerful politician. And he’s running for U.S. President. Suddenly, Kate’s moving in with a family she never knew she had, joining a campaign in support of a man she hardly knows, and falling for a rebellious boy who may not have the purest motives. This is Kate’s new life. But who is Kate? When what she truly believes flies in the face of the campaign’s talking points, she must decide. Does she turn to the family she barely knows, the boy she knows but doesn’t necessarily trust, or face a third, even scarier option?

Set against a backdrop of politics, family, and first love, this is a story of personal responsibility, complicated romance, and trying to discover who you are even as everyone tells you who you should be.

To be completely honest, I hated this book for about the first quarter of it. I almost DNF-ed it, but because of all the completely glowing reviews I’ve read on it I decided to keep going. I’m glad I did, as it did definitely get better. However, I still found it a far cry from the perfection I’ve seen it reviewed as.

So why did I dislike it so much to start? There’s mention of Kate’s backstory briefly before diving right in to her finding out who her father is. I didn’t like the way it was handled at all. Kate’s aunt and uncle just completely give over their home to the senator’s campaign staff and aren’t really there for Kate at all. They stay out of the way and leave her to deal with it. Kate also completely drove me nuts. She asked no questions, didn’t stand up for herself, and did exactly as she was told by people she had no reason to trust. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m also very annoyed with how impulsive and whiney and stupid YA heroines can be and Kate steered clear of that, which I like. But it was almost like she had no emotions about it for most of the book. She was excited about the idea of having a family and that was it. She didn’t really deal with the fact that her mother had lied to her her whole life or that her father obviously only wanted her around to redeem his image for the campaign. His wife and his friend kept telling Kate to give him time and that he was “worth it”, but the guy was a complete douche until the final chapters. Kate finally shows some real emotion and he finally stops being such a politician.

Ok, so rant over. Kate eventually became less annoying as the story went on. I liked how her relationship with her step-mother evolved and her relationship with her half brother and sister, though I thought they could have been a little more developed. I loved Andy. He was sweet and understanding and funny. My only complaint with him was there wasn’t enough of him. While I definitely appreciate that this story was based on family and not romance, he really brought humor and a lightness to the story that I missed when he wasn’t around.

The behind-the-scenes look at the campaign was interesting. I thought most of it was pretty well done and I appreciated the new spin on YA. There was lots of opportunities for the story to get really political, but it mostly stayed away from hot-button topics. There’s mention of the senator being pro-choice and pro-gay-rights, to which Kate responds, “but he’s Republican!” and then they don’t bring it up again. The big topic, and the one closest to Kate’s heart, is immigration. This also had the potential to get pretty “preachy”, but I liked that multiple perspectives were given and it was used to help develop Kate’s relationship with her father a little.

Overall, The Wrong Side of Right was an ok read. It was interesting take on YA contemporary that I haven’t read before. While it started out pretty bad for me, it definitely got better. I’m glad that I finished it, but I’m also glad I waited for it to come to the library instead of buying it!

Overall Rating (out of 5): 3 Stars

3 stars

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