I saw Reagan at PeruseProject on YouTube do this tag and wanted to try it myself. Here are some books that were totally unexpected favorites. For some, I just took a chance on an unknown book and was blown away. For others, they were unexpected because the other books the author had written were not for me. All of these are five-star ratings in my book.
The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
If you know me, right now you’re thinking, really? this was surprising to you? Yes, I tell you. It was. This is because although Maggie is my favorite author now, before this she had written The Wolves of Mercy Falls and I wasn’t all that into it. I loved Maggie’s first two books, Lament and Ballad, but I thought that her writing might tend toward the newer series. Luckily I picked this up and gained a wonderful new favorite.
Some Quiet Place by Kelsey Sutton
The cover is what caught my eye on this book. It didn’t have spectacular reviews so I wasn’t sure it was going to be great. It sounded so weird and up my alley though so I was compelled to try it. It ended up being excellent. It’s about a girl who doesn’t experience feelings but can see them hovering around when someone else feels them in the form of people.
The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende
This one is an unexpected favorite because I read it for school. It was my senior project. I had to read the book and analyze the literary elements while also putting the book in its historical context to discuss what effect it had. It was an amazing project–one of the few that I actually felt passionate about in school.
Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi
This one is surprising because I didn’t really like the first two books in the series. They were super easy to read and enjoyable in a way that’s like, wow everyone in this book is full of angst and obsessed with themselves. Tahereh Mafi really stepped it up for this one and introduced a change in story that threw me for a loop.
The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski
I opened this one not expecting much. It was pretty hard for me to get into and I thought there was no way the romance was going to be believable. After the first third of the book I was hooked and stayed up reading this until very late because I had to finish. Marie Rutkosko is the queen of writing high stakes.
Fire by Kristin Cashore
When I read Kristin Cashore’s first novel, Graceling, I didn’t enjoy it. I don’t know why I stuck around for this one but it took my breath away. The characters were strong and beautiful and selfless. It’s one of the few books I have re-read multiple times.
Out of the Easy Ruta Sepetys
I read this book my senior year of high school because they were offering a scholarship to college for the winner of the best essay based off this book. I never wrote the essay but I did cry in study hall because this book was so good.
Ashes by Ilsa J. Bick and The Dead-Tossed Waves
I put these two together because they are both about zombies. It was when all the hype with The Walking Dead and Warm Bodies was really high. These books delivered the emotional struggle I look for when exploring a zombie book. I want to see the struggles of loosing loved ones to a disease even though their bodies are still walking around. I want to see how different humans react to their society crumbling.
The Revenant by Sonia Gensler
I wasn’t reading blogs at the time that I read this book but I feel like it was horribly under-hyped. It’s an amazing historical fiction novel that discusses racism towards Native Americans, a possible murder, and a haunting.
Let’s chat! Do you have any unexpected favorites on your list? Tell me what they are and why they were so unexpected in the comments!