Top Ten Most Unique Books I’ve Read

Posted April 7, 2014 by Cristina (Girl in the Pages) in Top Ten Tuesday, Weekly Features/Memes / 18 Comments

TTTcustombannerTop Ten Tuesday is a fun weekly feature hosted by the fantastic blog The Broke and the Bookish. This week the topic is Top Ten Most Unique Books I’ve Read. This category crosses quite a few genres for me!

Top Ten Most Unique Books I’ve Read :

1) Lolita by Vladamir Nobokov- There’s never been quite as elegant, distracting, and unreliable narrator as Humbert Humbert.

2) Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Lani Taylor- Taylor takes on the most unique and elegant approach to the genre of YA angels-and-demons/paranormal romance I’ve read. She’s unparalleled in world building, and her detail-rich writing takes place in lavishly described cities all over the world (and in other worlds). Taylor has the most elegant writing of any YA author I’ve read, and Karou is a stand-out  main character with her blue hair, collection of teeth, and ability to resurrect. Read my review here.

3) Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson- Speak was the first book I encountered about sexual assault in the YA genre. It’s unique in its raw depiction of the truth of sexual assault and the aftermath that’s often just as traumatic, and Anderson doesn’t try to sugarcoat or undermine the very real problem of assault amongst teenagers and young adults.

4)  The Selection by Kiera Cass- The premise of this series is what makes it so unique to me- it blends the trendy dystopian genre with our culture’s obsession with reality tv shows like The Bachelor and smashed the two together. I’ve never read a series that read so much like a reality show.

5) Masque of the Red Death by Bethany Griffin- Loosely based off a story by Edgar Allan Poe, Masque of the Red Death haunted me for weeks after reading it with its eerie combination of steam-punk elements, infectious plague, and dirty glamor. It retains a beautiful and chilling darkness that I’ve yet to find in any other YA series.

6) Sputnik Sweetheart by Haruki Murakami- This is the first text by Murakami I read for a Japanese Literature in Translation class, and Murakami has a way of writing that really gets under your skin, proving that fear really resides and manifests in the self rather than in things that go bump in the night.

7)Middlesex by Jeffery Eugenides- Middlesex does an amazing job weaving together many different narratives into one engaging story, including sexual identity, immigration, multiculturalism, and cross-generational narratives. It explores a family’s quest for the American Dream side by side with the quest for gender and sexual identity.

8) Cinder by Marissa Meyer- The Lunar Chronicles take the most unique modern-interpretation of fairy tales I’ve read, blending them with sci-fi, cyborgs, and a dystopian world set over a thousand years in the future. And it all works flawlessly. Read my review here.

9) Obsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout-If you’ve read my blog you know I have no love lost for the Lux Series. Armentrout takes a really unique twist on the YA paranormal fiction and instead of using the predictable cast of vampires, werewolves, and fairies, she chooses to go in an underdeveloped area- aliens.

10) Twelve by Nick McDonell-The most gritty portrayal of a high school cast in a YA novel I’ve seen. It has a dark tone throughout that exposes the underbelly of the type of privileged cast that appear in other YA series of the 2000’s, such as Gossip Girl or the A-List.

Link back to your Top Ten Post and I’ll be sure to stop by and check it out! I’d love to see your thoughts this week!

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18 responses to “Top Ten Most Unique Books I’ve Read

    • Be careful with Obsidian- once you get started it’s hard to stop! I always find that’s a dangerous problem with series that already have several books out once I start them- it’s easy to get caught up and continue buying them all at once!

  1. Cinder is a fantastic choice! I adore that series. And I loved the Lux series up until Origin. They are so addictive and wonderful, despite the Twilight comparisons.

  2. Cait

    I definitely agree that The Selection was unique! It was such a different spin on the average dystopians…I’m kind of extremely hooked to that series. 😉 My TTT!

    • I haven’t read any of the others yet- I’m trying to be good and wait until I can get my hands on a paperback version of the Elite, or at the library. But the covers are so gorgeous it’s hard to resist!

  3. Love your inclusion of books ranging from Speak to Lolita. I’ll have to check out some of the ones you’ve mentioned here that I haven’t read, like Masque of the Red Death. Great list and wonderful post in general!

  4. Cinder, again! This is probably the 5th list I’ve seen Cinder on. It’s on my list too, you can’t deny it’s unique twist on Cinderella. I need to read Lolita. Thank you for sharing.

    My TTT

    • I struggled with whether to put Cinder on here because I feel like I gravitate toward putting it on so many of my lists- but I guess that’s just a testament to how good the series is!

  5. I was wondering… How do you know Cinder takes place over a thousand years in the future? I mean, I’ve read the book and don’t recall it being mentioned in there so, did you read it in one of the sequels? Or did you do a little research on it? (Like the author’s website?) I’m not doubting you, I was just always curious as to when it actually was set and I’d love to know how you found out. Oh, wait… Wasn’t there something about the book taking place in the year seven hundred and something? Did you base it off that?

    Sorry about all the questions. Anyways, I agree, Cinder is a really unique book.
    My TTT

    • I just inferred based on things mentioned in the book, such as the society being post world war IV, and it taking place in the third era (since the second era is the common era we’re in now). I actually went to the wiki and it turns out it has it’s own kind of parallel universe timeline, which mirrors our present day timeline, it just extends much farther into the future:

  6. I really need to read Cinder. I’ve heard so much about it, and I can tell it would be something I really enjoy. I can’t believe I haven’t heard of Masque of the Red Death. I love Edgar Allan Poe. I definitely need to check this out! Thanks!
    Speak was also the first YA book I’d read that dealt with sexual assault. It’s quite powerful.

  7. The only book that I’ve (somewhat) dabbled in is the movie adaptation of Speak. Though I shouldn’t be making these kinds of comparisons, I don’t think I was able to garner feels for the true nature of the movie since Melinda (played by Stewart) was pretty much defined for me as Bella zzzz. I do apologize if you’re a fan of her though!

    joey via. thoughts and afterthoughts

    • Don’t worry, I’m not a fan of Stewart….and sometimes I’m glad not to see the movies, especially before I’ve read the book, so my perception isn’t altered! Hopefully you’ll get a chance to read the book one day!

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