The quest for a book that leaves me satisfied

I signed up for another reading challenge over at Goodreads this year. I didn’t quite make it last year – I think I missed the mark by over 20 books, but I’m hoping to give myself more time to read (and more time to just not be working) this year. I’m aiming for 75 books again, though Goodreads tells me I’m a good 12 books behind schedule, so I really need to step up my reading for the rest of the year. Maybe I should finish any one of the 30 books I’ve already started.

I was generally unimpressed with this round of books. Anyone have any good suggestions for something that’ll leave me with a happy sigh at the end?

The Icing on the Cupcake – Jennifer Ross

The Icing on the CupcakeI hated the heroine of this book. Even once she became a bit more self-aware and made attempts at being more likeable after being a truly mean and unpleasant person, I still hated her. One of the most important things of a chick lit is a relatable, if not likeable heroine, since you spend the book entirely in her head, so that really made this a hard book for me to get into, even if I could have gotten past the other completely unrealistic parts. But the plethora of cupcake recipes throughout certainly look appetizing, so there’s that.

The Circle – Dave Eggers

The CircleThe premise of this book scared the ever-loving crap out of me. The idea of my entire life out there on the web for people to watch is literally my worst nightmare. And then, to have them be able to comment and whine if I don’t react to their comments fast enough? Ugh. So, I thought this book would be delectably creepy and make a huge statement on how connected and out there for display we all are and privacy issues.

Instead, Mae was just a moron. She did things because everyone told her to, but I had no idea how she felt about what was going on. How did she feel when her transparency caused the death of a friend? When she embarrassed her parents? What would make her continue to have sex with a guy who flat out didn’t satisfy her and then lie about how great it was when she got nothing else from the relationship? I wanted the insight into the whys and how it felts, and instead it was a wishy washy meander without a point.

And, despite the great cast, don’t bother with the movie either. It was even more wishy washy. (But moar funny Tom Hanks. I miss him. I still maintain that Joe vs the Volcano was vastly underrated.)

Thirteen Reasons Why – Jay Asher

Thirteen Reasons WhyThis was definitely a gripping, albeit depressing book. I’m one of those weirdos who wants a longer epilogue or a chapter or two that gives us the what happened after it all went down. And a lot went down. So I wanted to know what happened. I don’t want to spoil it for you, but some of the reasons why, there needed to be ramifications and people being found out and I have no idea if there were. My 40-ish year old self also thought a lot of those reasons were kinda lame to kill yourself over, but maybe 16 year old Laurie would have thought differently. (When did I become an old fuddy duddy?)

I’ve only seen a few episodes of the TV show, but from what I can see, a lot of these ramifications are being dealt with, so that might give me the satisfaction I’m looking for here.

Don’t You Cry – Mary Kubica

Don't You Cry I’m gonna be honest, I liked the The Good Girl way better than I liked this one. There’s so many “This is the next Gone Girl/Girl on a Train‘ books out right now, and a) is that a good thing? Girl on a Train was boring as heck and no one was likeable in Gone Girl and b) I haven’t read one yet that has a twist I didn’t see coming a mile away. This was still a fairly readable voice, which I liked, but it took a little too long to connect the multiple points of view/stories going on for my taste, and it didn’t have the holy geez twist at the end I was promised.

50 Shades Trilogy

Fifty Shades TrilogyI blame the fact that TMN was airing the first movie every day and commercials for the second movie were on constantly that I finally tried to read these books. So bad. So very, very bad. I couldn’t even get through the third book. If this were good BDSM, that would have been fine. I’ve read good BDSM, this was not it. Even if you get past the Twilight fan fiction part of things, Christian was just a jerk who liked to beat women who looked like his mother. It wasn’t about sex, it wasn’t about getting aroused by his partner’s arousal from the pain. If he hadn’t been a billionaire, this never would have been published, let alone become a book trilogy that became a movie trilogy. And I don’t like what that says about people. It needed well written sex and an actual plot. Sadly, none of the books had either.

What about you – have you read any of these? Agree? Disagree? Have recommendations? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

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