Hello friends! I’m here with a discussion today, which is going to be about memorable books and their opposites, but most importantly, about books I enjoyed, had positive emotions about… just to then become completely indifferent toward. It’s a chunkier post, but I hope you’ll enjoy this rambly, messy discussion.. it might not seem like it, but I tried my best to organize my thoughts. 😅 Okay, let’s jump in!
I read a lot and I have a pretty weak memory, so obviously, my memories of the books I’d read a while ago aren’t extremely vivid in most cases. But as long as I enjoyed a novel, I’m usually able to recall one or multiple aspects that made me love it, e.g. the romance, the atmospheric setting, or the characters. For instance, I read Rick Riordan’s Magnus Chase novels a long time ago, thus many of the details have escaped me, but I do remember my favorite aspects and still fondly recall things like:
- the awesome friendship between our main cast
- how sassy and banter-filled the novels were
- how much I enjoyed the slow development of the romance
- what fun the world-building was
- and so on!
This is not just cold, factual information in my brain – rather memories that make me smile and emotional even to this day. 🥰 A different category of books, but one that also carries some fond memories is the category of old favorites I wouldn’t want to revisit today. In this case, I know I wouldn’t enjoy these books today, either because their content is questionable or because I’ve outgrown them. Even so, I remember how much my younger self loved these books, which means that there are some positive emotions associated with them. A good example is Twilight, the novel that introduced me to Young Adult Fantasy, a genre that remained my favorite for years.
The direct opposite of these fond, happy feelings associated with books are, of course, negatives, such as anger, disappointment, or hatred. There are, unfortunately, a few books every year that make me feel these strong, negative emotions. Similarly to the good books like Magnus Chase, these too are memorable… but not in a good way, i.e. if I think of them, my negative emotions will resurface.
I’d be remiss not to mention that there are quite a lot of books – usually three star-reads for me – that I read, am underwhelmed by, and then forget all about. The important thing to remember here is that these books have never made me feel strong emotions, positive or negative, so the fact that I’ve forgotten them is not surprising, nor does it make me sad.
Today’s post was inspired by a less well-defined category and one that makes me so. bloody. annoyed. now that I’m thinking about it. 😩 These are books that I enjoyed – think of 4 star reads – but then, as time went on, became unmoved by. In most of these cases I’m able to recall the characters and even specific events from these books. The issue is that essentially right after I closed them, they lost their hold on me. These are not bad books, as – like I said – I tend to have strong feelings about books I consider to be bad, but I have no real feelings whatsoever about these books.
The reason why I find these books frustrating is that I like them, I might even recommend them to people, but sooner rather than later I just become indifferent to them. I’d call them forgettable, but I’m not sure that’s the right expression here, as I do remember many of them in perfect detail. Let’s look at an example.
I think Beach Read was one of 2020’s biggest titles, even though I know some romance readers were disappointed by the botched marketing; while I’d call Beach Read women’s fiction / chick-lit, it was strongly marketed as a romance novel or a rom-com. In any case, I was fine with that, and I really enjoyed Beach Read when I was reading it for the first time. I called it “one of the best summer reads I’ve ever read” in my review, which was absolutely true at that time, as I enjoyed the heck out of that novel while reading it. But, unfortunately, when I think of Beach Read now, I just don’t feel anything.
🤎 Related post: Contemporary Romance Mini Reviews
The post I linked above contains mini reviews for three contemporary romance novels that I consumed and enjoyed during the summer of 2020. I rated all three novels, including Beach Read, four stars, which suggests that I enjoyed them equally. That might have been the case, but interestingly enough, while all my positive emotions regarding Beach Read have disappeared, I still remember the other two novels fondly.
- Take a Hint, Dani Brown makes me beam when I think of it. I loved the romance, the characters, and how witty the novel was.
- Head Over Heels, which I’d have called the weakest of the three at the time, still gives me strong emotions, particularly when I think of how well the author handled the sexual assault and the verbal abuse.
Beach Read, however, makes me feel nothing, which brings me to my question to you – does this happen to you? Do you ever read a book that you enjoy, rate highly, maybe even recommend to others, but then feel extremely underwhelmed by a few months later? When I look back at Beach Read, I have no scathing criticism.. in fact, I think some of the scenes are really fun and well-written, but thinking of the novel, its characters and other aspects no longer fills me with joy like it should.
I feel like this discussion is all over the place, but no matter, I’m really curious to hear your thoughts! So do share them with me down in the comments!