Top Five - Books I Feel Differently About Over Time

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

 
 

Top Ten is the weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, in which we showcase our top ten books in a certain category. This week's theme was "Top Ten Books You Feel Differently About." Like last week, this was a hard category for me to pick books for, so I chose to only list five and, even so, some of the books were just ones that my friends and I had differing opinions on.
 
 
Number Five: The Help by Kathryn Stockett 
 
This remains one of my favorite books and movie to this day. The reason it made this list, though, is that the main critique for this book, one that focuses so heavily on the matter of race, is that it's just another book about "whites helping the blacks," with many readers claiming that it read as if Aibileen wouldn't have been able to make such a difference without the help of Skeeter. While I certainly see the argument, I counter with the fact that I see this book as one that - while it might have a heavy emphasis on race - was mostly about personal growth of all three main characters. Yes, it certainly has issues that could be critiqued, but I still love it, regardless.
 
 
Number Four: The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
 
I read this book a few years back and thoroughly enjoyed it. At first, I rated it as four stars, my main qualms being - of course - with the ending and that Death hinted too heavily about what would've happened. As time passed, though, I've realized that I was a little too harsh with my judgements. Considering a book that was set in WWII, I suppose it was only natural that SOMETHING like that would happen, right? I suppose I was just too sour about the hurt when I finished reading at first. Since then, though, I've edited my rating to five stars and it's a book I look back on fondly.
 
  
 

Number Three: My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult
 
This is another book in which I loved, right up until the ending. I actually hadn't been spoiled about what would happen and, when it did, I felt like it was just a means to shock the reader. I was super annoyed at first, but my irritation has waned over the years and I still recognize that it is, indeed, a good book - one that actually got me started on Picoult. I even watched the movie adaptation.
 
 
 
 
 
Number Two: Twilight by Stephanie Meyer
 
Every reader has a dirty little secret and this one is mine. I admit it. I got swept up in the hype that was Twilight back when it was super big and everyone was reading it. I know, I know! In hindsight, it was really stupid. And even I realized that by the time Breaking Dawn came out. But give a girl credit - I had to read it to see what all the fuss was about! At least now me and my friends can laugh about how dumb we were back in the day. 
 
 
 
 
 
Number One: The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie
 
I had to read this book in college as part of my Crime Fiction lit class. This was actually my first time delving into Christie and this was another book with a twist ending - one I didn't see until right up at the end. And, in fact, I really liked it! There were a TON of people in my lit class that hated it, though, and felt used after finishing the book. I still like the story and give Christie credit for taking a risk, but I can definitely see how others might have been rubbed the wrong way.
 
 
 
 

 
That's all I have for this week's Top Ten Five. Have you read any of these and have differing opinions? What were on your lists? Feel free to link me to your own TTTs in the comments below~



11 comments :

  1. It can be really difficult to come up with TEN examples, so five is great! Your selection is wonderful. I've never read The Help, but I saw the movie and liked it somewhat. I thought Jessica Chastain was amazing in it AND it introduced me to the genius that is Viola Davis. But if the movie was any indication of the book, then yeah, I DO think that the white-assistance angle was awkward.

    And in high school, I was a Twilight fan (before it became a thing, even!). So I feel ya there. I was always on the message boards at The Twilight Lexicon and daydreaming about the books! But then, as I grew up, I began to hear people when they said the book was problematic, and I agreed with them. My fervor died down about the time the first movie was announced.

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    1. Usually, it's not TOO terribly hard for me to think of ten, but the past couple of weeks have been challenging topics, lol. The Help is one of the rare instances that I watched the movie before reading the book - a big no-no for me, but I hadn't even known the book existed until I saw the trailer for it. I couldn't wait to see it and dragged my grandma to the theaters with me that day, lol. Indeed, Viola was amazing, as was Octavia Spencer. You should try reading the book at some point. The movie sticks pretty close to the source material, but we all know the book is always better. ;)

      Oh, phew! I'm glad I wasn't the only one that fell into that trap. XD It IS easy to get swept up into the fandoms that everyone seems to be talking about, though. I really need to try to stop doing that. Everyone was talking about Fifty Shades of Grey and I ended up reading that one, too... And it was painful, lol.

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  2. I like your rational for these - it was hard to come up with a list this week! When it comes to Twilight, around the time the last book came out, a neighbor kid had me borrow all four of the books and had me read all of them. At the time I thought that the first was ok, the second nothing happened, the third one was actually alright, and the fourth one seemed like it was by an entirely different author. I only kept going because I didn't want to disappoint her, and she made it sound like they were the best things ever and I was just waiting for them to get there which they never did for me. Then she had me go see the first three movies with her, and that was just about too much...still haven't seen how the movies end!

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    1. It really was! I haven't looked at next week's theme yet, but hopefully it will be easier, lol.

      At least you were pressured into reading it and didn't do so in your own volition. I have only myself to blame for reading them. XD I definitely agree with you, though. New Moon was soooo boring and a chore to get through. Even when I was "swept up in the hype," I remember asking myself, "When will something happen?!" And Breaking Dawn was just terrible in general and read like a fan fiction rather than the climactic end to a series. It was like even SHE couldn't chose which character to have Bella end up with, so let's just have her pop out a vamp baby spawn for Jacob to imprint on. Ugh!

      I only ever watched the first movie and even then, I found myself groaning at some of the theatrics. I don't regret skipping the other movies.

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  3. I love this topic this week because this really does happen all the time as we grow as readers and our interests change.

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    1. Our reading interests certainly do change over time. I have books that are sitting on my shelf that I read years ago in genres that I don't really pick up anymore, but I don't have the heart to get rid of them, knowing that I DID enjoy them at one point. I'm such a sucker, lol.

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  4. I've read Christie's book too. I'm not sure if I remember feeling used? I just remember liking it and how clever it was. The Book Thief is also amazing! It's a favorite that I hope to reread one day. Awesome post!

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    1. I thought it was super clever, too. I just know that a lot of people were pissed in my lit class. They were all, "You can't do that in a mystery book!" Lol.

      And yes! The Book Thief is an amazing book. I was a little salty after the ending for a little while, but I eventually got over it. Have you seen the movie? It's an amazing adaptation of the novel~

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  5. I'm actually almost afraid to reread the Book Thief. I loved it so much and it was so emotionally draining, I wonder if I'll still feel the same way or be a little jaded. I just bought the Anniversary Edition, so I better find out soon.

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  6. I love the Murder of Roger Ackroyd especially because it has a twist but I guess it can feel like betrayal I suppose. Unreliable narrators do seem to be divisive - some people love 'em and others hate 'em.

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  7. I have to admit, I'm still a pretty hardcore Twilight fan. In fact, I was reading the graphic novel of it yesterday and shipping Bella and Edward for about the 100th time. I haven't read the Help yet but I have plans to read it towards the end of June and am really looking forward to doing so. And I'm glad you've come to appreciate the ending of The Book Thief.

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