After seeing Madalyn do this post a while ago (and since then a few other bloggers too!) I knew I wanted to jump in and do it myself! I followed Madalyn’s method: I went to my Goodreads “read” shelf, sorted it by average rating from lowest to highest, and chose the first eight (rather than ten- I wanted to choose relevant titles) books that popped up that received four- or five-star ratings from me. I’m only including books that I’ve read since I started blogging back in 2014. This post was actually a lot of fun to put together, and it’s interesting to see what books that I really enjoyed had lower overall ratings- some I definitely wasn’t expecting!
The Young Wives Club (Average Rating 3.34 | My Rating: 4) I’m surprised this one is the book with the lowest average rating on the list! I really enjoyed this one when Lauren and I read it for Book Buddies, and I especially loved the pastel cover and really enjoyed the unique voices of all four main characters. I would definitely buy other books that this author writes!
Roseblood (Average Rating 3.37 | My Rating: 4) Ok so I know this book weirded a lot of people out- and it IS sort of out there- but I loved the creativity in this Phantom of the Opera retelling! It was different and magical and dark and I actually much preferred it to the author’s more popular Splintered series (but I’m also not a huge Alice in Wonderland person). I also like how her covers are all similar with the gorgeous close ups of the protagonists faces!
Genuine Fraud (Average Rating 3.38 | My Rating: 4) I can see how this book can be very devisive- it’s a mystery thriller that’s told in backwards chronological order, so I definitely get how it’s NOT everyone’s cup of tea. While there were elements I didn’t love, I overall enjoyed this twisty tale (though not as much as I did We Were Liars).
Immaculate (Average Rating 3.5 | My Rating: 4) I LOVED this book. It’s one of the first ARCs I had the opportunity to read when I was starting out as a blogger and I loved how it had an interplay of religion but didn’t make the book preachy- it very much raises thoughtful questions for the reader to answer about the main character’s virgin pregnancy story. It saddens me because I feel like I haven’t heard of many people reading it, but I promise it’s so good!
Hello, Sunshine (Average Rating 3.5 | My Rating: 4) So this book is a little unorthodix for me because I’m usually not a big fan of books focusing on theater/acting, but I really enjoyed the premise of the main character really having to figure out how to become an adult, from budgeting to moving to California alone, to having to buy and build her own Ikea furniture (the Ikea effect, anyone?) It’s also rare in that it’s a post YA novel but features a character who doesn’t choose to pursue college right after high school.
Landline (Average Rating 3.55 | My Rating 4) I’ll be super honest- I don’t remember a TON about this book, but I’m surprised it has such a low average rating because HELLO RAINBOW ROWELL. I remember loving the nostalgia in this book (of just talking on the phone for hours with your crush instead of texting) and I loved the sort of fantasy/magical realism elements that were at play here but were never fully explained or forced- they were just part of the story.
Made for You (Average Rating 3.66 | My Rating 4) So this was a rather disturbing psychological thriller but it was one of the better YA ones I’ve read lately. I loved the Southern setting and the ominous feel of the novel, as it’s told in a dual POV perspective, one from the protagonist and one from the antagonist/stalker (though you don’t find out who that is until the end). It’s unique to be able to read from the villain’s POV and it was a clever move for this story.
The Truth About Alice (Average Rating 3.67 | My Rating 4) I’m actually really sad to see this debut doesn’t have higher ratings because it’s SO important, especially back when it came out. It focuses on slut shaming, the cruelty of teenage gossip, the double standards when it comes to teenage girls and boys and their bodies and reputations. In my review I noted it was the most honest book I read in 2014.