Worst books of 2010? A controversial list, to be sure, but here they are. These are the most overrated books of the year, the worst books among popular reads. Along with the worst books, there are suggestions for 2010 releases in the same genres that would be more enjoyable and entertaining.
'I Curse the River of Time' by Per Petterson
Bleak. Glacial. Cold. Pitiful. Not the words you’re looking for in a novel? Then pass on I Curse the River of Time by Per Petterson. Petterson constructs some emotionally authentic moments, but a page worth of authenticity does not make 224 pages worth your time.
'So Cold the River' by Michael Koryta
So Cold the River
by Michael Koryta was one of amazon.com's "Best Books of the Month" for June 2010. Funny, we thought it was one of the worst books of the year so far. Read a complete review of So Cold the River
by Michael Koryta to see why this might not be the most thrilling pick for your beach bag.
'Blockade Billy' by Stephen King
Baseball and Stephen King
and a nip of horror. Is it worth it? Eh. This is something you could skim in a bookstore and maybe get a hair to stand or two. But this one is pretty much for King completists. Otherwise, not worth the cost or the time.
'House Rules' by Jodi Picoult
Reading Jodi Picoult is always a little bit like watching a natural disaster -- you can't look away, but it doesn't make you feel good at all. Picoult is known for combining controversial issues, courtroom scenes and family drama. At her best, she makes readers think. When she's not at her best, as in House Rules
, she just provides painful melodrama that is not actually true to life.
'Beatrice and Virgil' by Yann Martel
Spiegel & Grau
Sophomore Slump? Well, not really. It technically can't be. Yann Martel did write a novel before Life of Pi
, but his books from here on out will always be compared to Pi
until he writes something that matches the imagination, wit and style of that modern classic. Beatrice and Virgil
, Martel's third novel, sadly falls short of Pi
's magic. It packs a punch at the end, but the storytelling this time is much more plodding and burdensome, distracting from the powerful metaphors at work.
'Committed' by Elizabeth Gilbert
Here's the problem: Elizabeth Gilbert spends almost all of Committed
summarizing what she learned about the history and sociology of marriage, and what she thinks that means for creating a happy marriage rather than telling her story, as she did in Eat, Pray, Love
. She is not, however, an expert on marriage. I don't want to read Elizabeth Gilbert's Cliff Notes on the history of marriage. I want to read a story.