The past two weeks have been distressing for both personal, work, and blog related reasons. Now that the last two have been mostly mitigated (and my domain is no longer expired – yay) it’s time to get my #AtoZChallenge back on track. I’ll be posting these more frequently in the days to come since I have some catching up to do, so today, D is for disappointing.

It would be an injustice to go into reading a book with low expectations, and luckily I’ve read enough books I’ve enjoyed so I haven’t had to commit this injustice. However, when a novel disappoints, it can [sometimes] be hard to admit, and difficult to undermine your expectations of authors. But, disappointments do exist, and I think it’s important to share them especially if you can’t necessarily pinpoint why you were disappointed, or to see how others perceived a book you may have enjoyed.

The following are four books I’ve felt disappointed by. I’ve chosen these specifically because they stick out to me the most, but this is not an exhaustive list.

There Was An Old Woman Hallie Ephron

I wrote about this book here, so I’ll be succinct. As a thriller, historical fiction, and relationship-heavy novel, it just wasn’t enough to make a big impression on me.

Some Luck Jane Smiley

When I started this novel, I was hoping to love it because it’s part of a trilogy (if there’s anything I love more than one remarkable novel, it’s three that are part of the same world), but I found it a little dull. I was hoping it would be like John Steinbeck’s East of Eden, a novel I love, but Some Luck fell short of that expectation.

Anna Karenina Leo Tolstoy

No matter how many times I read this fully (twice so far) or try to start it (countless times), I’m always left with disappointment (is it the pace? The back-and-forth between characters? The lack of indulgence I feel?). But no matter how many times this happens, I always find myself picking this novel back up. What does this indicate? Obsession? Insanity? The need to love a mammoth classic? Maybe we’ll never know (all of the above).

In the House Upon the Dirt Between the Lake and the Woods Matt Bell

With such a noun-heavy title I was intrigued right away by this novel. But, as the story progressed and events got further and further from reality, it turned into an exhausting game of rereading and keeping track of details that seemed to grasp at the strings attempting to pull them together.


What are the most disappointing, or most surprisingly disappointing books you’ve read, recently or ever? Did you have a different experience reading those that disappointed me? Share in the comments, and stay tuned for my next #AtoZChallenge post. Thank you for reading!

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