So, a couple of weeks ago I came up with this idea. I'd read 52 bestsellers in 52 weeks thereby exposing myself (in a literary way) to a bunch of new authors and books I might never have read. I'd be, like, connected to the popular literary culture and I'd (hopefully) get some insight into why some books are so popular.
Week 1 was awesome. I'd already read and loved Gone Girl, so yeah, for the project. Then I read Hopeless (an ebook sensation that I wouldn't have read otherwise, and enjoyed) and Safe Haven (a Nicholas Sparks book that had parts that were better than other books of his that I've read but did not convert me into a fan). So far, so good. But there was a problem; week 4 had those same three books all over the list. Solution: Wildcard Week where I read The Painted Girls on the assumption that it would be on the list the next week (I was right; it's great and it's still on the list). Bullet dodged.
Week 5 brought me to The Perks of Being a Wallflower, which I had wanted to read anyway. Perfect. And then we hit week 6. Private Berlin by James Patterson and Mark Sullivan. And ... I couldn't do it. Oh, I bought the book. I've read several chapters. But, but, but ... it's just not for me. Not because it's badly written or because it has a bad plot. There's nothing wrong with it, really, but there's nothing tying me to the book. I have no desire to read it, to find out what happened, nothing urging me along. That element I could see in all of the previous books even if they weren't what I would usually enjoy seems absent here. For me.
Quandary. I'd agreed (with myself) to do this thing. I felt like I had an obligation. I felt guilty. But then I decided to give myself a break. Reading should be fun. And there's no way I'm going to give an objective review to any book I had to force myself to read. I'm not someone who should be reviewing this book, plain and simple. I can't tell Patterson fans, or potential Patterson fans, if they should pick it up or give it a pass, so instead I'm giving myself a pass. Because I can do that!
So, onto a new week, where we're heading back to the top of the YA list and John Green's The Fault in Our Stars. I love John Greene! Phew.