Top Ten Tuesday – Books That Took Me By Surprise

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly blog event hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.

It’s not a very well kept secret that I am hard to please when it comes to the books that I read. I want to be hooked early on, I want to feel the emotions of the characters and be totally swept away by the plot.  So while I try to go into books with a neutral, “Oh this looks interesting, it could be good” point of view, there are a lot of books that disappoint me. These books however are not that. These are books that I read and fell in love with, all without meaning to. Hope you enjoy the post.

1. Just Kids by Patti Smith. 

A couple years back I was babysitting for a really great lady, and the kid I was babysitting was pretty good at entertaining himself (he was an around 5-6) and so there were times when he would watch tv and I would read a book next to him. This book is one I found in the house quiet by accident.  I had no idea who Patti Smith, nor am I a fan of punk rock music. So I was not expecting to be blown away by this real life story. I probably read this book once every other year now because I love it so much. It inspires me to no end!


2. Bull by David Elliot. 

I really wanted this book to be good because I really like experimental stories. So I’ll pick up a poetry novel any day. But like I said, I’m really hard to please and so I was terrified that this book would let me down. Bull did not disappoint. It is so heartbreaking, so beautifully written, so masterfully put together. I hope to own it one day.

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3. Saga by Brian K. Vaughan.

What would a TTT post be without Saga? Empty, lifeless, and not worth your time. 😉 Just kidding. But yes I know you are all so shocked to see this on my list. 😉
Before reading Saga I hadn’t really read comic books, I’d just never been interested or if I had been I wouldn’t have known where to start.  I heard of Saga a few times, so in a mood of boredom I tried the first volume and fell in love. After I finished it I made Grant read it, and then hurried to find the rest of the series.

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4. Pure by Julianna Baggott. 

I had never heard of this book before reading it. A couple years back I was going through a library’s shelves and saw this unique cover, I sat down to read it and was not disappointed. The world is so dark, the characters so easy to sympathize with. It gave me feels that I hadn’t had the pleasure of feeling for awhile, which of course made me very happy.


5. Children of Icarus by Caighlan Smith.

I accidentally got the second book in the series from NetGalley, without realizing that was what it was. So then I had to search for the first book at my library. Thank goodness I did! Because this series was so good, and such a surprise. I love retellings, but I can never tell if they’re going to surprise me or not. This one definitely did.

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6. Without Merit by Colleen Hoover. 

I decided to read this book because it won the 2017 Goodreads Choice Awards for the romance section. Before reading it I had had some bad luck with the other winning books, so I doubted I would like this one. I’m just not a huge fan of the romance genre. But this book was really good. A bit strange at first, but the emotions were so visceral I was pulled in and couldn’t put the book down.


7. Dividing Eden by Joelle Charbonneau.

I’d definitely heard some mixed reviews for this book after I’d requested it from the library. So I was a bit nervous to read it, thankfully it surprised me by being really awesome. I loved the characters, and the world was really neat as well.

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8. Wildefire by Karsten Knight.

I honestly can’t remember anymore why I decided to read this book, I feel like I might have just picked it up at random. Anyway, it was so worth the read. A lot of people wonder if it’s like Percy Jackson, and in a way I guess it kind of is? It has gods and demi-gods, but that’s about all the likeness these two have. Wildefire is more mature than the PJ books, it’s darker, more diverse (obviously Rick Riordan’s books have gotten so much better with diversity after his first series) and has an angry kickass main character.

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9. Borne by Jeff Vandermeer.

I don’t read a lot of sci-fi, not because I don’t like it, just because it’s not usually the genre I reach for. But anyway, since this one was in the 2017 Goodreads Choice Awards I decided to give it a try. And wow! Such a unique world, such interesting characters. And the ending still gets me. I’d really like to read this book again someday.

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10. The Host by Stephenie Meyer.

I’ve mentioned before that this book surprised me. Like a lot of people I tried Meyer’s vampire series and found it severely lacking, but this book is much more mature than her other series. The story is better written, the characters more unique and interesting, and it even brings up some interesting moral quandaries.

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14 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday – Books That Took Me By Surprise”

  1. I’m not much of a comic reader and have been debating picking up Saga, so I’m glad to hear you enjoyed it!

    1. Yeah I’ve seen that on Goodreads, but the first book was published in 2011 with no updates on the rest of the series, so I’d be surprised if the others actually came out. Plus I’m not sure if I’d want to read more? I thought the ending was good as is. I guess we’ll see though!

      1. I agree; the ending was good and I don’t want it to be ruined. It must have been an idea that just didn’t take off.

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