This week’s Top Five is all about: Bookish Things You’re a Grinch About! I love that book so I hope to have some fun with this one. Remember to go to the Goodreads Group to see what others have come up with for this week’s topic.
I tried to come up with one thing to Grinch about five times, but I just couldn’t come up with anything. So here are five things I Grinch about in the book world.
1. Summaries that give away too much.
I really hate it when you know too much going into a story, or they give away something important. I ran across this recently when a student pointed out that the summary in our school’s catalog for Masterminds by Gordon Korman, totally gave away the whole mystery of the town and what they were hiding. I was floored and immediately went in and changed it! When I booked talked it I really made a point of not telling the kids so that they would want to read it. Huh! Publishers what were you thinking!
2. Cliffhangers at the end of a book – especially when you are left hanging about a character’s possible demise.
I don’t mind chapters that end with cliffhangers too much, except at night when I am trying to go to sleep. Then I have a hard time putting the book down. I also don’t mind them when I can immediately pick up the next book in the series, but oh when I have to wait a year or more! Ack! It is enough to make me not want to read a book ever again! (Just kidding, I don’t really mean that) The most recent book that comes to mind for this is Lord of Shadows of course. It will be a really long year till the next one after that ending! By the way have you seen the cover for the next one? It is gorgeous.
3. Speaking of covers, I really hate it when they change the look of a cover mid series!
Now I am not talking about hardcover vs. paperback covers, but when they have set a style or tone for the series and then just totally change it. Worst offense this year: The Beautiful Idols novels. Do I really need to explain how wrong this is? Plus I am not a big fan of models on books.
4. Ambiguous ending in a book.
So by this I mean an ending where the author leaves it up to you to decide what happens to the characters. The best known book with this type of ending is The Giver by Lois Lowery. Now I really love this book, but the ending always leaves me unsatisfied. I usually see this the most with stand alone books. Would it really be so hard to write an epilogue? Give us a hint of how the characters ended up in their lives? The one I read this year was Orphan Island. I get why the author did what she did, but I don’t have to be happy about it.
5. Not numbering the books in a series or making the numbers so small I have to get a magnifying glass to read them.
I’m old, I have bad eyesight from reading all of those books. Is it really so hard to make the numbers in a larger font that I can see easily? Or even number them? I’m looking at the book shelf next to my computer as I write this and just on one shelf there are 13 books that are part of a series with no numbers on the spines. Most are first in a series that came out this year, but some are seconds and should have a number or something that indicates where it lies in the series. When it is only a duology or trilogy it is a little bit ok, but when you get into the longer series, not so much. I spend time everyday at work helping a student find the next book in a series, mostly because the series is not numbered or because it is so small neither of us can read it. Something needs to be done about this one. (I picked Scythe to go with this one, because book 2 comes out next month and I am super excited about that.)
I am sure I can think of way more things to be a grinch about in the book world, but this is Top 5 Wednesday so I will refrain for now. Don’t forget to stop by the Goodreads Top 5 page to see everyone else’s lists. This should be a good week. What are some of your Grinch’s about books?
I totally agree about the not numbering series things, it’s one of my biggest pet peeves! But I actually like somewhat ambiguous endings! I think it gives the reader their own freedom in determining the characters’ fate
I guess I’m lazy when it comes to endings. I want to know what the author thought not me. But I appreciate that not everyone agrees with me. Thanks for the comment.
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Cover changes are so annoying! I mean, sometimes they work, but that’s SOOOO rare
So rare indeed. I don’t mind so much when it isn’t middle of the series changes, but still I have found very few changes that I have liked.
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Numbering books! Yes!!! I almost added this to my list, but I was already at 5 peeves. 😉 On a related note: not labeling a book as the start of a series. The number of books I read this year alone that I didn’t realize were going to be a series…I almost threw a couple of them across the room because of the AWFUL cliffhangers. Those things are SO much worse when you thought you were reading a stand-alone book! Sigh.
I so agree. I think sometimes though the publisher is testing out the series to see how it goes before committing to more.
Great list! Cliffhangers annoy me, as well.
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