Top 5

Top 5 Books That Weren’t What I Expected


We’re on to February’s Top 5 topics this week. (Only 5 more months until we start thinking about Christmas!)

Shana at Bionic Book Worm is carrying on Top 5s for the rest of February, too. Let’s hope we have topics for the rest of the year, I love this segment. This week the topic is “Top 5 Books That Weren’t What I Expected.”

They say don’t judge a book by its cover but honestly, we all do it. If we didn’t, nobody would bother making the book covers look pretty. The cover generally plays a big role in our first impressions of a book and sets our expectations for the book we’re about to read. But not all of them are exactly what we expect and that is especially true for these books:



1. A Grave Death by Victoria DeLuis

I loved the idea of a Necromancer’s Bureau when I first read the blurb for this book and because it was the first time I’d properly read necromancers, I definitely had something else in mind. A Grave Death read a little bit like a Resident Evil movie if the T-virus was replaced with magic.

There was way more gore than I was expecting but executed in a pretty original way and the police-esque setup of the bureau was a little unexpected. I guess I thought it would be more of an FBI setup but the way the author did it was better. The biggest surprise for me was where it was set: Wales. Wales is a completely overlooked country despite its rich mythology and amazing setting potential. Plus, I grew up there and it was awesome reading about the places I knew growing up. Loved it.

The full review of A Grave Death is a-right here.


veritas ark

2. Veritas’ Ark by Jo Seysener

I have to admit, nothing about my first impressions of this book gave away what it would be like. Veritas’ Ark is all about a utopia yet Veritas is barred from using her powers which only hope to progress society. The utopian aspect of the book was pretty surprising but I sort of got the feeling this was an urban fantasy at first glance, so I had no idea there would be any gods.

This novella was a really pleasant surprise though because it talks a lot about oppression and discovering yourself despite an oppressive environment. By the end, I felt really empowered, which was super unexpected but in the best way.

The full review of Veritas’ Ark is a-right here.



3. Calico Thunder Rides Again by T. A. Hernandez

OK, this book was a complete blank for me when it first hit my inbox. For sure there was going to be a dragon and a circus but everything else was a total mystery. So, a complete surprise awaited me and I was not disappointed.

I was completely unprepared for the dark undertones in this book and it had a very sinister plotline. But the story came together really well and I was introduced to a whole new subgenre of fantasy. Of all the books on this list, this one was probably the most unexpected.

The full review of Calico Thunder Rides Again is a-right here.




4. Sorceress Awakening by Lisa Blackwood

There was only one big surprise for me in this book: the gargoyle romance. It boggled my mind. At first glance, this looked like a totally standard magic realism/urban fantasy with only the slightest hint at paranormal romance. At the beginning of the book, the romance between the sorceress and the gargoyle was hinted at but by the end it was full-on.

I’ll be honest, I was a bit shocked to be seeing this kind of romance but actually, by the end, it kinda worked. It still boggles me a little bit to think back on it but it was a good read all the same. Go into this one with your eyes wide open.

The full review of Sorceress Awakening is a-right here.



5. The Rise of Kyoshi by F. C. Yee

This book is a prequel to the TV series Avatar: The Last Airbender and if you haven’t seen that show, it’s super light-hearted, although it does touch on some important issues. So, I never expected The Rise of Kyoshi to be quite so dark. This book actually isn’t that dark, but compared with the TV series, its up there.

The coolest unexpected part in this book though was the relationship between Kyoshi and Rangi, who have been unofficial friends before their adventure. Yet, this blossoms into romance and it came out of nowhere, but it was awesome.

The full review of The Rise of Kyoshi is a-right here.

Thanks for reading!


6 thoughts on “Top 5 Books That Weren’t What I Expected”

  1. I’ve only read one of the books you’ve mentioned, Rosie, A Grave Death. I really liked the unexpectedness of it too, although I had read a couple of short prequel novellas the author had written to whet our appetites. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, I think so too. Hopefully the next book in the series Death Toll will be released in the summer. If not sooner if we can all nag her 😂😂😂

        Liked by 1 person

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