Top Ten Tuesday – Unpopular Bookish Opinions

So I sat down on Sunday morning and thought to myself what unpopular bookish opinions do I have? Honestly I don’t think that I have ten unpopular opinions, and I’m not even sure that the ones I do have are actually unpopular opinions, but I’m going with them anyway!

Monday evening update! I couldn’t get to ten of my own opinions so I’ve split the post in two. One part are some of my bookish thoughts which may or may not be unpopular; and the second part are some bookish opinions I’ve heard which are unpopular with me!

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme currently hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl


Unpopular Bookish Opinions

My Bookish Thoughts

Dumbledore isn’t a good guy…

Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore – Hogwarts Headmaster, Chief Warlock of the Wizengamot, Supreme Mugwamp of the International Confederation of Wizards, Founder of the Order Of The Phoenix and Leader of the Light – but is he actually good? I really don’t think so, in fact I think that he’s as bad as Voldemort, I wrote a whole post on it a couple of years ago.

The epilogue pairings are the worst

Another Harry Potter one – they’re not all HP related I promise! Hermione and Ron, and Harry and Ginny… Meh that’s all I have to say. J. K. Rowling had a whole world of characters to pick from and these two pairings were the best she could come up with? Really? Hermione is the brightest witch of her age and she ends up with Ron – a guy with the emotional depth of a teaspoon? And Harry ends up with Ginny – a fan girl who we a frequently told throughout the books looks just like his mother, it’s a little creepy! I’m not sure if J. K. Rowling really thought these were the best pairings, of if there was a certain pressure to have the Golden Trio end up together, and having Hermione and Ron together and Harry with another Weasley was the neatest way to do it…

The Lord Of The Rings is overrated…

My dad read me The Hobbit for my bedtime story when I was little, I loved spending time with him, but the story… Not so much. I tried to read The Lord Of The Rings trilogy when I was older but I still wasn’t a fan, I can’t even sit through the movies…

Magical realism, meh…

I really don’t get magical realism, it does absolutely nothing for me. I read two magical realism in quick succession and really didn’t think much of either of them. I think Carrie Hope Fletcher is a popular author in this genre but I just couldn’t connect with On The Other Side at all… Maybe I’ve just read the wrong books…

I don’t see anything wrong with fan fiction

Is this an unpopular opinion? I really don’t see a problem with it, as long as the writers aren’t making money from it and the author whose work it’s based on hasn’t specifically said they don’t want people using their characters and creations in their own work. I’ve read some great fan fiction across various fandoms – maybe I just enjoy reading a future for Hermione that doesn’t involve Ron… I think these days the lines between fan fiction and published fiction are becoming narrower with author’s estates approving new novels with famous characters such as James Bond, Sherlock Holmes, Hercule Poirot and even The Secret Seven, and other authors using established characters and re-imagining their well known story or creating a new backstory for them, for example the Queen of Hearts in Marissa Meyer’s Heartless.

Revival novels are lazy

See above point – these days novels using existing characters seem to be becoming more common. To be honest some of my favourite characters have been resurrected in recent years and I’ve enjoyed the novels but they seem to be becoming more frequent. Now to be clear I’m not saying the authors are lazy, they still need to put together an interesting plot and write the novel. On the other hand I worry slightly that the publishing industry is moving in the same direction as TV and Film where so much of the content produced is part of a franchise or a revival – I get that it’s a lot easier to market a book where people are already familiar and well loved, and I love a goof crime fiction series so this may sound a little hypocritical but I think it’s important to make sure the balance remains and wonderful original stories aren’t lost because so much of the marketing budget goes on the lastest James Bond novel.

I don’t mind the odd scribble in certain books…

Now don’t get me wrong I am quite precious about my books and one should always use a bookmark, even if it’s an old receipt or train ticket, and never dog ear a page to keep your place. However I get great joy in sharing some of my favourite books with other people, and one of my favourite possessions is my paperback copy of Harry Potter and the Goblet Of Fire which toured friends around the country and is full of scribbles! My one rule for this though is always buy a second copy of the book for this, then I keep my pristine version too!

Other Bookish Opinions

Audiobooks don’t count as reading

I’m fortunate that I can pick up a book or my kindle and read with ease when the mood strikes me, I listen to audiobooks for convenience when I’m doing housework and my hands are full or I’m in bed feeling lazy and cannot be bothered to hold a book. I’ve discovered some great new series this way and I love the way certain narrators bring books to life. However I’m also well aware that for numerous reasons not everyone can pick up a book and read with the same ease I can, and for them audiobooks can be a lifeline into the literary world, they make it more accessible for people so don’t tell me they don’t count as reading!

Genre fiction isn’t that good…

I love crime fiction, you may have noticed… I’m not necessarily the biggest reader of some of the other big genres like romance and fantasy but I definitely get the feeling from some places that these are looked down on as not being as good as literary fiction, and I don’t think it’s the readers or even the book sellers but there’s something, and maybe it’s some of the major book awards, that gives me the impression that people don’t view genre fiction as quality writing. Now don’t get me wrong it’s not all my cup of tea, and I’m sure some of the writing isn’t as good as others but that’s true of everything, including literary fiction… Maybe it’s also the way they’re often positioned at airports as light holiday reads, maybe I’m reading too much into that!

Stop reading YA and read a proper book…

This one really irritates me, the idea that a book primarily marketed at teens isn’t a proper book and now that I’m a ‘grown up’ I shouldn’t be reading them. Some YA is great escapism, the same as some adult fiction is, but some YA also deals with incredibly complex and deep issues that can affect adults just as much as teens. I have read some amazing, thought provoking young adult literature, some have made me laugh, some have made me cry and some have made me incandescent with rage. The best have done all three! So if you ever see me reading a YA book on the train please don’t come and tell me to read a proper book – I already am.

There’s a mixture of my thoughts which may be unpopular and other thoughts that I find unpopular! Do you agree with any of them? Let me know in the comments!

22 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday – Unpopular Bookish Opinions

  1. goldenbooksgirl

    Finally someone else who thinks Lord of the Rings is awful! I read about a chapter of the first one and threw it across the room, I hated it so much. And I’m fairly sure I fell asleep because I found the film so boring when dad made us watch it one time (mum left the room). Have you read Wing Jones? That’s my favourite magical realism book that I can think of, and it’s great. I hate it when people treat genre fiction as lesser as well. And anyone that judges people based on what age their books are aimed at can put themselves RIGHT in the bin.
    Amy x


    1. Sarah - SWB

      I’ve never even picked up the Lord Of The Rings The Hobbit was enough for me!

      I’ve not read Wing Jones yet, I own it but to be honest now I know it’s magical realism I’m not overly keen on picking it up

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Kate (Reading Through Infinity)

    Totally agree with your take on fanfiction! It’s a way for fans and readers to express their love of a piece of media, and explore other plotlines that could have happened. I can understand why some authors don’t like it, but I love it when authors are fully on board with fanfiction. I also kind of agree that LOTR is overrated; it’s a good series of books and I enjoyed the films, but it’s not my favourite because there are so few women in it. Great post!


    1. Sarah - SWB

      Thanks Kate! Sometimes there’s nothing better than settling down with some fanfiction, and I’ve read some brilliant novel length stories! As much as I love the original pieces of work occasionally there’s some fanfiction than puts right something I think the author got wrong (well bits I didn’t like anyway lol)


  3. dinipandareads

    Love your list and I agree with pretty much all of it. Had quite a bit of a laugh reading your epilogue pairings paragraph too! I’m glad to hear another person with the same opinion as me about The Hobbit — I haven’t read the LOTR trilogy because I found that book so boring and I was so disappointed. Definitely a point where the movie is better than the book for me!

    My TTT


  4. iloveheartlandx

    I liked the Harry Potter epilogue when I first read it and I still don’t hate it as much as some people do, but I’ve gone off it in recent years. I’ve never actually read Lord of The Rings. And audiobooks doesn’t count as reading is such an ableist take-it’s a great way to make books more accessible. I love genre fiction and I hate people who look down on YA.
    My TTT:


    1. Sarah - SWB

      Right! I’m not sure if others mean it in an ableist manner but that’s certainly how I interpret it! Let people access their fiction in whatever legal manner they want! You only want to read physical books go for it, but don’t tell people who chose audio or eBooks that their choice isn’t equally valid


      1. iloveheartlandx

        I’m sure that most people probably don’t, but they view things from the perspective of being ablebodied where to them audiobooks are the lesser of many other options as opposed to being one of few options available to them. I totally agree!


  5. lydiaschoch

    Yeah, I wasn’t a fan of the epilogue pairings in HP either. Honestly, I think all of the single characters should have remained single until they were much older.

    My TTT.


  6. Aymee (@asphaltcowgrrl)

    I really liked Dumbledore’s character, but he definitely had his own agenda that had less to do with Harry and more to do with himself. And the Harry/Ginny pairing was one of my choices this week as well (and let’s not even get into the horrible names JKR chose for those poor children).

    Often, fanfic is better than the source material, so yeah. I’m with you on this one.

    Not going to lie, I love a good romance novel, the cheesier the better, actually. But you’re right – I have a friend who looks down on anyone who reads any kind of romance. Let me live and enjoy my cowboys, okay? And this ties into your last one re: YA. Read what makes you happy. I love a good thriller/crime novel, but I also love my ridiculous manga. And I’m far from being young, yanno. My kid was shocked the first time she asked for manga and I said, “Sure, let’s go to the bookstore.” I think she was expecting pushback. Haha.

    Here is our Top Ten Tuesday. Thanks!


    1. Sarah - SWB

      Completely agree read what you love, at least you’re reading! You do you and let everyone else do them, their reading choices don’t affect you so don’t try and make them feel bad about it!


  7. CharlotteSomewhere

    Hard agree with Dumbledore being a bad guy.

    I hated Lord of the Rings books. I liked the film’s bit not the books.

    For magical realism, try someone like Alice Hoffman. She’s written some brilliant ones. Off the top of my head The Ice Queen and The Story Sisters are two of my favourites. And they have a dark streak in them.

    I love audiobooks, genre fiction and YA.


  8. Christina Reid

    I completely agree about the Harry Potter epilogue and it is one of the reasons why I seek out HP fanfiction too 🙂
    I don’t really understand the popular view of looking down on genre fiction or policing what people read – let people read the books and love them or hate them as they choose, without judgement!


  9. Pingback: The Sunday Post – 16th June 2019 – Sarah Withers Blogs

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