An interesting feature in the Huffington Post recently caught my attention and gave me the idea for this post. In the Huff piece, readers were asked to list books they hated that everyone else loved.
A couple books mentioned had me nodding. The wildly successful EAT, PRAY, LOVE by Elizabeth Gilbert, wasn’t a favorite of mine. There were also books that shocked. THE BOOK THIEF by Markus Zusak, for example. Zusak’s book is the first to make my top ten list in almost a decade. Someone didn’t like it? How can that be? Impossible!
All in all, the lineup was fun, enlightening, and entertaining. And honestly, it’s a good thing we don’t all like to read the same thing, ‘cause dudes, we sure don’t all write the same thing. Who knew there were folks out there who didn’t enjoy LORD OF THE RINGS, ANGELA’S ASHES, or THE ROAD?
I’m sure you can see where this is going.
My personal pick for a book everyone else loved but I didn’t: SNOW FALLING ON CEDARS by David Guterson. I should have loved it. All the elements were there: elegant writing, a Puget Sound setting—where I lived at the time I read it, a murder, courtroom drama, social justice. But for me, nothing clicked. Not the characters, not the storyline, not the descriptions, not the theme (if there was one).
There is a connection between reader and book that runs deeper than plot and protagonist. Although, I can’t put my finger on exactly what it is, I know when it’s there. With me and SNOW FALLING ON CEDARS, that connection was missing.