I have to say, sometimes I just pick up a book and I’m blown away at how bad it is, being anything from poorly paced or just plain uninteresting. I think the worst offenders of this are definitely young adult novels. They’re almost all carbon copies of each other, and I get it, if it ain’t broke, why fix it? But at least some of them add at least one interesting plot point or a new twist on something we’ve seen before. However, there are some books that are complete copies of better ones, with little to no new plot devices and are riddled with common fiction tropes.
The last book I read that I personally feel has fit this description is Wondrous Strange. I don’t know if any of you have read it, but it’s a take on the “supernatural creatures in NYC” (why is it always New York City?). In this novel its Faeries, but they’re all named after the characters in a Midsummers Night Dream. Many predictable plot points ensue, and of course, the romantic subplot involving a human girl who was actually special the whole time, and the powerful, attractive Fae warrior with washboard abs and a pretty face. None of the conflict feels detrimental in the slightest, because we as the reader already know what’s going to happen. It’s so predictable.
A book similar to this one -with the whole Shakespeare inspired faeries- is the Iron King series. I remember really enjoying the first two books because they had their own well-developed world, a good balance between reality and fantasy and the main character didn’t make me want to scoop my eyeballs out with a spoon.
So, my question to you, what horribly written, disappointing or otherwise completely unoriginal books have you read? What are examples of similar books that have succeeded in making you feel connected to the story?