I love a lot of books, so I don’t have a particular favorite genre. I like trying new authors and experimenting with different kinds of dystopias, utopias and the occasional alternate universe. However, coming across so many books has inevitably led me to find a few that, to put it bluntly, aren’t that great. I’m talking the kind of books you force yourself to finish and, on occasion, abandon altogether. I don’t mean to disparage any of the books on this list because, above all else, it’s purely based on my opinion. I think these authors are quite brave to even put their work out there in the first place. Unfortunately, I found myself cringing way too often for my taste. I can handle the cliches if done correctly or in a new way, but the tired trope of the heroine throwing herself at a boy she feels “a strange attraction to” is getting old. And please give me a break with the love triangle; I really can’t take it anymore.
- Fallen by Lauren Kate
I should’ve listened to the reviews. They offered me fair warning in advance, but I foolishly didn’t listen. This book sounded really great, with the promise of fallen angels and reincarnation. Sadly, the book’s female protagonist is absolutely horrible, and I grew increasingly frustrated with her. Here’s the plot in a nutshell: girl goes off to boarding school where she meets a mysterious boy she feels “inexplicably drawn to” even though he treats her like absolute garbage and refuses to give her the time of day. When we find out the reason why…. well, let’s just say that you’ll feel an “inexplicable” desire to throw the book across the room.
- Moby Dick by Herman Melville
The supposed great American novel? In which there are entire chapters simply describing the anatomy of different whales? Narrated by Ishmael aka one of the world’s most boring protagonists? Hard pass.
- Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
Honestly, in a book that has zero likable characters, what else can you expect? Sure, everyone seems enthralled by the mysterious Heathcliff, but he’s actually really horrible and doesn’t deserve an ounce of sympathy, even after having such a traumatic childhood. I’m disappointed by this book since Emily’s older sister Charlotte stole my heart with her masterpiece Jane Eyre.
- Twilight by Stephanie Meyer
I wish I could go back in time and tell 12-year-old Casey that she should not read Twilight just because everyone else was reading it. Bella is honestly one of the worst protagonists ever. She’s dull, boring and rather cynical for no reason. Plus, she chooses Edward over Jacob, and that can never make any sense to me, no matter how many times you shove those equally-terrible movies in my face.
- Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
I’ve actually read this book three times for different classes, and I hope every time that it might somehow get better. News flash, it doesn’t. In fact, the long, tedious descriptions make me actually want to give up reading, and that is not okay!
A lot of these books are considered classics for reasons I’ll never understand. Apparently, using a lot of symbolism automatically puts some kind of value on one’s writing, even if the rest of the book is less than appealing. I don’t mean to discourage anyone from reading these books because a lot of them are popular; I’m just giving my honest assessment. And honestly, I’d rather pass.