Kicking off a quick lil series of reading wrap-ups is the worst books I read in 2018. Here’s the thing: I didn’t read any bad books this year. I enjoyed a good number of books on this list, but even though I liked reading them in all their trashy YA-ness, I can also objectively recognize that these are poorly-crafted books. There’s room for improvement; let’s just leave it at that.
Here are my worst 8 of 2018:
8. Beautiful Chaos by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl
Of all the 2000s paranormal romance books, this series is definitely one of my favorites, which is why I was disappointed by this book. The first two in the Caster Chronicles, Beautiful Creatures and Beautiful Darkness, emphasized the development of the main characters, and I felt that this book lacked a comparable character arc.
7. Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake
With Three Dark Crowns, there was simply too much going on for me to enjoy the story. Between the three narrators and the hosts of characters that surround each of them, I practically had to draw diagrams to keep each character straight. I plan on continuing the series because I’ve heard good things about the second book, but this book didn’t do it for me.
6. Not If I Save You First by Ally Carter
Don’t get me wrong, I love my girl AC and her army of strong teenage females, which is why I was even more disappointed by this book. The premise was too far-fetched for me, and the entire story rested on this difference between possibility and plausibility. A girl with a sparkly hatchet who wants to rescue the president’s son so she can kill him herself? Possible, but not plausible.
5. The White Rose by Amy Ewing
This book is a prime example of YA fiction that I thoroughly enjoyed even though it is trashy literature. I talked about this book a little bit in a prior review and explained why the aesthetic of this book didn’t work for me. It felt like there were five independent cultures existing within mere miles of each other, even though traveling from culture to culture is common. It didn’t make sense and frequently pulled me out of the story.
4. Shatter Me by Taherah Mafi
Ok y’all, put your pitchforks away. I know most of y’all would go down swinging for this series, but the immaturity of the narrator’s voice sent me over the edge. I DNFed it at around 80 pages, which is why I had to include it on this list. Maybe I’ll give it another go and try to read farther in the series, but for now, I’m just going to focus on books that don’t make me cringe.
3. The Black Key by Amy Ewing
Like The White Rose, the third book in this trilogy was not great. Also like The White Rose, this book was super improbable. The revolt against the wealthy was poorly-constructed from the start and lead to an even more improbable ending. I genuinely cringed through the entire book.
2. Fallen by Lauren Kate
All this book was string me along for 400-something pages. Is main character Luce falling in love with him, or isn’t she? Is the swoony love interest a fallen angel, or isn’t he? I stopped caring around halfway through, but since I found the entire series in perfect condition at a consignment store, I feel obligated to keep reading.
1.The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton
I say this with the most love possible: this book is not good. The characters are dull and flat because the elegant description and extravagant worldbuilding overpower any opportunity for character development. Like Fallen, I stopped sympathizing with the characters about halfway through because they became pure trope material. I went more in-depth on my thoughts in my non-spoiler review.
What were your worst reads of the year? Do you agree with my picks?
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