Friday, December 1, 2017

The Writer's Book Tag: Books I Love, Hate, and Couldn't Care Less About

It's been a long time since I've participated in a blog tag. I usually pass a lot of them by because I feel like they're cheating you, my lovely followers, out of your usual writing tips post. But this one piqued my interest because 1) I'm super busy right now and don't currently have any ideas for an original post (just being honest). 2) This tag is about one of my favorite things and your favorite things: Books.

Many thanks to S.M. Metzler from Tea with Tumnus (and possibly some other people at some point or another? Sorry. I'm bad at keeping track of these things) for tagging me to join in on the fun.

So let's get to it.
The Writer's Book Tag: Books I Love, Hate, and Couldn't Care Less About
First Draft: A book or and series that you’ve never read before. 

Yes, I'm editing these prompts a bit so that I can talk about more than one book per post. I know that's breaking the rules, but what are you going to do? Throw me in blogger jail? Pffft. That's not an actual thing, right? .... Right?!

Book: Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut. As an avid reader of classic novels, it's actually very odd that I've never read this. But, while we're on the subject, I may as well confess: I have no idea what this book is about. A slaughterhouse? Is it for animals or people? Or maybe it's a metaphor? For what, though? I have no idea. I'll find out at some point, as I do intend to read it.

Series: The Divergent series by Veronica Roth. You can't make me. I'd rather read Bella Swan's diary, which we all know would be boring and depressing and aggravating beyond belief.

Second Draft: A book or series you didn’t like as much the second time you read it.

The Tamarack Tree by Patricia Clapp. I own this book and I honestly don't know where it came from because I'm certain I didn't buy it for myself. I sometimes read it when I'm sick and in bed. Again...I have no idea why...except that it has something to do with the fact that I can never remember what it's about or how it ends. 

The second time I read it I remember thinking, "Why do you like this, again?" I still don't have an answer. It's not a bad book, but apparently not a particularly good one considering I've read it at least five times and still can't remember the plot. But maybe it is good given that I somehow brought myself to re-read it four times? I don't know. Unless...
Yeah. That's gotta be it.

Final Draft: A book or and series that you’ve liked for a really long time.

Book: Island of Blue Dolphins by Scott O'Dell. I loved Scott O'Dell as a child and this one is still an age-old favorite. It's beautiful and heartrending and I just...I really, really like it. It's been a while since I've read it, though, so now I'm feeling the urge to re-read it, which is unfortunate because my 'to-be-read' list already has approximately 12989043783 books on it.

Series: The Prydain Chronicles by Lloyd Alexander. This is the best. Absolute best. I love it. It never ceases to make me smile and it's one of the first book series that made me fall in love with fantasy. 

Killing Off Your Characters: A book or series that made you cry.

A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness. This book ripped my heart out and made me cry several different times. You should read it. It's excellent. 

Plot Holes: A book or and series that disappointed you.

So many. So many. In case you hadn't noticed from reading my blog: I'm a very critical person. Thus, I'm constantly finding myself frustrated. Narrowing down my list was hard, but here were the first two that came to mind:

Book: 13 Reasons Why by Jay Asher. "Disappointed" is a very weak and slightly inaccurate description of my feelings towards this book. "Angry" and "upset" are a bit better. I wrote a whole review about it, in case anybody cares. And if you are about to leave me a long comment down below about how this book is actually really good and helpful: Please don't. I am armed with logic and an unparalleled hatred for this book and I will destroy you. It's cute that you think you can win, but seriously. No. 

Series: The Maze Runner series by James Dashner. I really enjoyed the first. The second one annoyed me. The third one made me lose hope in the series. I was so disappointed because I really did want to like this series due to the fascinating concept and neat characters....But there were so many issues. SO many. Why did all the female characters end up being unlikable? And what was with that ending? Did the author really have to kill off all of the good characters? And what was the point of any of it, anyway? *sigh* 

Writer’s Block: A book or series you’ve never finished.

*whispers* I never actually finished the Percy Jackson and the Olympians books by Rick Riordan. Partly because I disliked pretty much all of the characters and partly because I find Riordan's writing style very grating (nothing personal, seem like a cool person). 

Yeah. I know I just alienated about half of my readership. *shrugs* You should also know that I'm not a huge fan of The Hunger Games or Shakespeare. You can go ahead and start throwing things at me now. 

Feedback: A book or and series you’d recommed to anyone and everyone.

This is actually really hard because I don't know of many books that I think are suitable to be recommended to everybody of varying reading tastes and age ranges, but I'll do my best: 

Book: Winnie-The-Pooh by A.A. Milne. Seriously. Laugh if you want to, but everybody should read this book. It's phenomenal: Clever, heartfelt, sweet, thought-provoking. I don't care how old you are: You need to read this book. 

Series: Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling. I think this one is charming and enjoyable even for people who don't like fantasy. But maybe I'm blinded by my love for this universe. 

Now my brain is cramming full of all of the other books I want to tell you all about. Maybe I should do a Youtube live stream where we just all chat about books? Does anybody want that? Maybe I'll put something together over Christmas break. Maybe. Don't get too excited. 

What are some books that you loved, hate, or couldn't care less about? Were there any books I listed that surprised you? I'd love to hear your thoughts! And, of course: If you'd like to join in on this tag, just jump! You have my permission to say that I tagged you.

Related articles:
If I Had a Million Dollars | A Writers Tag
Six Question Character Challenge: A Look at the Characters from The Stump of the Terebinth Tree
Q&A Tag: On Batmobiles and Lightsaber Skills

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  1. *laughs nervously at the books you hate that i secretly love*
    anyway, i had to read slaughterhouse-five in year 11, and i can say, it's one of the weirdest books i've ever read. It's a satirical, nonsensical dystopian scifi thing set in the future about a POW, written in the 60s, and i can't say much more since i only actually skim-read it (oops). If you've ever heard literary people utter "and so it goes" and have no clue, then that's the catchphrase from the book.

  2. Love your honesty, Hannah. I thought I was the only one who really couldnt take Maze Runner or 13 Reasons Why. Maze Runner I felt was written so strictly from the male perspective (duh its a male author but hey great male authors are capable of NOT alienating an entire gender) that I literally felt like it was a boys' club book. And 13 Reasons Why - how about a 100 or seventy five thousand reasons why I strongly disagree with the plot, the theory, and the main character's motive. The *last* thing kids today need is more motivation or support to act on some psychotic backhandedly selfish and desperate reason to get their point across. It was a sick, dangerous portrayal of mental illness and I found it highly offensive to say the least. Anyhow!-- Thanks for this honest post, it was great!

  3. I know how that feels when you have so many books you didn't enjoy. I read some like that lately, including the Maze Runner and Scorch Trials, and I haven't been able to find some good words to say for a review. At least I can say the movies were a little better, considering Teresa actually WASN'T in a coma!!! That was a part that bothered so bad! So yeah, this post was great!

  4. I also have no clue what Slaughterhouse Five is about! But then, the same could be said about most classics...
    Until very recently, I thought Watership Down was about rabbits on a submarine. Because what else could "Watership Down" possibly be except a fancy way to describe a submarine? I'm also pretty sure I thought it was just a rabbity retelling of The Hunt For Red October.

  5. The Prydain Chronicles, and especially the covers painted by Jody Lee, were a huge inspiration for me in my childhood. I'm always really happy when I read that someone else loves them too!

  6. I'm going to claim you tagged me so I can talk about books! ;)

  7. Excuse me for being Janice here but Imma say this- Oh. My. God. I used to love your blog, Hannah. I used to like you as a person. I absolutely love Maze Runner and PJO. Divergent isn't as bad as you make it out to be- the first book is badass, but in the second and third ones there's kinda more focus on the romance. THG 's first is bloody amazing, second's second half is fantastic and third is sorta between okay and good. I watched the 13RW Netflix series, and I found it pretty good despite some things I found stupid like *spoiler alert* Clay's reason for being on the tape. I'm not gonna read the books because a lot of people have told me they're pretty disappointing.

  8. Oh my gosh! You and I have the exact same sentiments about the Maze Runner! I loved the first, didn't really like the second, and gave up after the third.

    I partly agree with your sentiments about Divergent, as I have read it. I enjoyed the first one, however the second and third one were fairly bad. Don't even get me started on the ending of the third one. As writer, it was an interesting ending and one that gave a nice plot twist. As a reader, it sucked. That's it. It sucked.

  9. Oh I hated The Maze Runner series! It was awful! I wanted to throw The Scorch Trials at the wall, but I finished it in the middle of the night and it was a library book, so I didn't. XD But it was so frustrating, and the main death in The Death Cure had NO bearing on the plot, just shock value. XP I read The Fever Code afterward only because someone got it for me for Christmas, and it was better than the main series, but still really frustrating. I have a whole review of the series titled "The Maze Runner: A Lesson in How Not to Write" on my blog.
    I actually haven't read a lot of the books you mentioned. Divergent was severely underwhelming, I've only been able to read the first Harry Potter book so far, and I think Percy Jackson was rather so-so. I enjoyed them enough when I read them, but they weren't super impressive.

  10. I fully agree with you on The Maze Runner series. Why just WHY?!

  11. I love your blog, but it is not okay to say that the PJO, THG, and Divergent series are even moderate. Sure they are a bit soppy, but what the heck. I live for those books.


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