Top Ten Tuesday: Ten books I read in 2015 (ish) that weren't my type...but I liked them anyway

top ten tuesday                surprises

Hosted by The Broke and Bookish.  

Want to help support your broke blogger so she can host more giveaways and give swankier prizes?  Click the book covers.  If you like the book and choose to purchase it from Amazon, a little bit of the proceeds goes to Sarcasm & Lemons!   

I don't usually pick up books I don't think I'll like, so I had to do some reaching...  

c.j.'s selections                         ten ten ten

one Vengeance Road - Erin Bowen 

I hate westerns.  John Wayne is boring.  I'd probably watch They Died with Their Boots On but only for Errol Flynn.  Only Erin's book is so swashbuckling and tense (with sexy gunslingers) that it became an exception to my rule.  
Walk on Earth a Stranger - Rae Carson 

Same goes for prairie stories.  F*ck Little House and gingham and freshly churned butter.  Only this book is actually vicious and brutal and takes the rosy cheeked sap right out of the west.  Also it's pretty.  
The Thing About Jellyfish - Ali Benjamin 

Heartwarming middle grade where kids feel feelings and make it through on the power of their childlike spirit?  Gag me.  But it's actually a poignant story of grief as experienced by a child, with writing an adult can admire.  
Saint Anything - Sarah Dessen 

This goes into my "pastel books with soft focus flowers on the cover" category, which I usually avoid.  Because they seem prissy and heartwarming.  Except Sarah is awesome and this book is authentically teen and a really compelling read.  And not pastel.  

five  What We Left Behind - Robin Talley 

Not only is it NA, but it's hardcore romance, aka the romance is the big part of the plot, which usually I'm like  But it's social significance and authentic characters made it a winner.  

Dumplin' - Julie Murphy 

I saw "pageant" and "Texas" and wanted to scurry away, but everyone and their mother and mother's mother was raving about it.  It turned out to be pretty cute and fun, and I learned about mums. 
The Girl From Everywhere - Heidi Heilig 

I passed this over because I'm not hugely into pirate books for some reason--or at least I always think I'm not, even though I've liked loads of them... But with gorgeous prose, tight plotting, and admirable characters, it became a favorite of the year.  

eight Everything, Everything - Nicola Yoon 

I don't get allergy books.  I was also fresh from disliking Trial By Fire.  But weirdo-disease book turned out to be super clever witty dry romance with dictionary definitions and diagrams for kissing.  Score.  
I'll Meet You There - Heather Demetrios 

Broken boy and girl in small town, problems, oh noooooooo.  It's a type of romance-heavy contemporary I usually stray from.  But this one had some layers of character that drew me in.  

ten  The Restorer - Amanda Stevens 

I don't usually read adult books about real adults because I'm totally not a real adult and I'm all like ew, marriage, jobs, blech.  But this NOLA-based supernatural crime thriller was riveting and spooky.  


  1. I need to read Dumplin' soon. Same to you, I've only seen people rave about this book! I'm really hesitant to pick up Saint Anything generally because (1) I've NEVER read nay Sarah Dessen book, and (2) I'm scared that it might bore me or make my eyes roll more than I usually do so. But maybe one of these days, I'll try and give it a go (or maybe some other of her books which ever comes first to my hand).

    1. I had the same thoughts about Dessen until I actually read one of her books. It's not my favorite book of all time, but I really enjoyed it, and it had so much more depth and spark than I gave it credit for before.

  2. Dumplin is SO not my type of book, but I keep hearing about it and I want to give it a try eventually!
    Sincerely, Sara