We’ve all, at least once, gotten bewildered when we started to read a highly-touted book. And it doesn’t matter whether this book is a new bestseller or a classic, the writing might be good and the plot might be twisted, but we just didn’t get what all the hype was about. That’s when the following conclusion comes to mind: the book was overrated, but people feel shy about talking about it around its fans.
Bright Side wanted to hear from the readers who dared to openly state their honest opinion about popular books.
- You know how it happens when you are waiting for a vacation for a long time, when you are getting ready for it with a sinking heart when it finally arrives and…. you don’t feel anything! At all! And the only feeling it brings you is disappointment. Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë was supposed to be my long-awaited vacation, but it became my biggest disappointment this year. It’s not necessary to read this book in order to know that it’s about love. Knowing this, you open the book and start to search for this love on its pages. Its chapters hide passion, obsession, madness, affection but I couldn’t find love there. Maybe I wasn’t searching well, but instead of love, I came across 2 selfish people who are not able to love, but who are well aware of how to make other people suffer. © Seducia / livelib
- Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman’s Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia by Elizabeth Gilbert. Yes, this book is quite popular, but I didn’t start to read it until recently. I heard the name of the book very often, later the movie based on it was released and it delighted everyone. So I decided to read it. And I didn’t understand it… The name implies that the main character will eat a lot in Italy, then pray a lot in India, and find love in Indonesia. After having gone through this journey, the author obtained self-harmony and peace. Well, whenever I eat pasta, I feel happy and love everyone around me. Meditations? It depends. I do meditate sometimes but not fanatically. Love? Yes, I agree with this. We should love ourselves, our life, and respect our choices. In no way should we blame our circumstances for our faults. If a husband is cheating on you, if your boss is a jerk and your friends betrayed you, go eat and break up with all of them. There is no need to change your geographical location for that. There is no need to go so far away. © Evgenia_Bulavina / livelib
- Love Lasts Three Years by Frédéric Beigbeder. Let’s look at this creation with honest eyes: the main character keeps whining and does nothing about their whole situation, he doesn’t make any conclusions and hence comes up with the idea that love lasts 3 years. This boring book has nothing except for the whining of a person who loves himself and is to blame for everything. © Pavlovna959 / livelib
- Perfume: The Story of a Murderer by Patrick Süskind. Perhaps my sense of smell is too sharp and my imagination is too rich, but this book smells bad to me. I agree that the book is strong, but it made a disgusting impression on me. I was feeling the smells described in it as if it were reality, that’s why I didn’t get any pleasure reading it. © Olga_Alf / livelib
- Martin Eden by Jack London. It’s pretty awkward when you are reading a book recognized as a classic of world literature, and aren’t feeling the promised delight. You involuntarily wonder if everything is OK with you. This happened to me while reading Martin Eden — it left me with a feeling of awkwardness and the question: “Is this Martin really a hero?” He is a person for whom everything and everyone are fools, while he is the only smart guy. © mesange / livelib
- Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. It’s like sugary sugar with sweet syrup. It set my teeth on edge. Poor angel-like girls who haven’t seen anything in life besides the sweetness of self-denial, enjoy their own humility in order to honestly deal with their burdens. It’s a book of endless moralizing, sermons, edifications, and instructions. And all the characters are extremely happy. © Byaka-Buka / livelib
- The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood. I found this book on the list of popular dystopias, among the works of Ray Bradbury and George Orwell. It’s not that I trust these lists 100%, but still, I was expecting some good fantasy story, which I didn’t get. The author obviously wanted to write a frightening book, describing a world where women have almost as many rights as animals. Each of them has their own role in society and it’s strictly forbidden to go beyond this role’s borders. The role of the main character, Fredova, is to give birth to children. The dystopian world is written so badly and, the characters are so sluggish, that instead of an impressive story, we get a weird fearful story that is not scary because of its absurdity. The author lacks cruelty, determination, and realism in describing the world where men are dominant and women are animals that are there only to reproduce. Even a magazine article about the difficult fate of women in third world countries will outshine its fearfulness from an emotional perspective. © Nathaira / livelib
- The Secret by Rhonda Byrne. It only takes a rudimentary understanding of science and rationality to see through the non-scientific drivel which the book perpetuates as profound insight. I find it particularly disturbing because it reduces immense poverty and inequality in the world to a simplistic new-age narrative. Want to become rich? Think about money! Born in a war-ravaged and disease-infested country? Think of all the good things and it’ll all be over! © Mithil-Kamble / quora
- A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess. I kept seeing delighted reviews about this book, so I decided to experience its greatness too. I wish I hadn’t done it… Any person who is slightly familiar with psychology will instantly understand who Alex and his band are. A psychopath is the exact definition of the protagonist of this novel. He enjoys the pain of others, receives moral satisfaction from it, and doesn’t feel guilty for his actions. Why was he sent to prison instead of a specialized institution? Are sanity tests not there in the Burgess’ world? The idea of the book seems interesting, the style of narration is unique, but a lack of the elementary knowledge of psychology cuts the whole plot down to the root. © LauraLetvinenko / livelib
- The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. This is the most terrible thing I have ever laid my eyes on. It is as if the totality of the terrible self-help sections and life tips from all gossip magazines on earth had somehow been liquefied and condensed into some primordial cheesy, pseudophilosophical essence, only to be swallowed and regurgitated by the author onto the poor, unsuspecting pages. © Bjarke-Mønsted / Quora
- Me Before You by Jojo Moyes. I can describe it with a single word — trivial! It’s just a well-PRed female novel. Still, it made a good scenario for the movie. It entirely consists of clichés, an extremely empty and boring book, with the plot predictable from the first pages. © leroo / Livelib
Which popular book do you consider to be overrated?