Books that were good, but could have been better

One of the stranger experiences for me as a reader is when I find myself mentally editing the novel I’m reading.  I think I may do this more after NaNoWriMos, when my brain is in writing mode, but either way it’s happened to me on multiple occasions.

Last week I read The Sin Eater’s Daughter by Melinda Salisbury, which is a YA fantasy following young Twylla, the embodiment of a mythic figure in her kingdom.  Her special powers?  She can kill with her touch, which lends itself to a role as the queen’s executioner.

The cover, however, needs no improvement.
The cover, however, needs no improvement.

The opening chapter was a bit lackluster.  Obviously we need some introduction to the mythology of the country, and also an opportunity to see Twylla use her powers, but as I was reading, I felt several parts should be rearranged, and I realized I knew exactly how I would do it.

As I got more into the book, my inner editor got much quieter.  There were some big twists, and characters that felt nearly realistic (and a stupid love triangle).  I read the whole thing straight through.  The ending indicates that (duh) there will be more books.  I probably won’t read them.  The pieces were all there, they just weren’t quite put together perfectly.

Story=good. Prose=ouch.
Story=good. Prose=ouch.

Last year in my fit of YA dystopian readings, I came across the Maze Runner series by James Dashner.  This trilogy was so well plotted and paced I just had to keep reading.  The problem?  The prose.  When it was good it was fine, but when it was bad…I found myself re-writing it in my head.

This one really messed with my head, because there were times when I thought, That sounds like something I would write.  And then I proceeded to tear it apart and make it better.  My driving need to edit my own writing is one reason I fail at NaNoWriMo; I just cannot stop my editing.  One more symptom of my perfectionist personality.


The Sin Eater’s Daughter (Melinda Salisbury)–2.5/5 stars

The Maze Runner/The Scorch Trials/The Death Cure (James Dashner)–3/5 stars

The Kill Order (James Dashner)–2/5 stars, skip this prequel!

6 thoughts on “Books that were good, but could have been better

  1. Livonne May 20, 2015 / 11:13 pm

    I do that all the time.. Must be the writer’s in us.. lol

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mei-Mei May 20, 2015 / 11:16 pm

      Sometimes you just can’t turn it off lol


  2. NovEllaandBanannabelle May 23, 2015 / 12:55 pm

    I’ve been thinking about reading The Maze Runner, too.

    When I read Stardust, I was surprised by how much I wanted to write my own version. Glad to know I’m not alone 🙂 .

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mei-Mei May 23, 2015 / 1:40 pm

      When I read Stardust, I had just seen the movie first, so I spent the whole time comparing the two lol. Love both, but quite different.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Charlotte Cyprus May 27, 2015 / 3:43 am

    I didn’t really notice how being a writer affects how I read things. The other day my friend was filling out a dating site and read her description of herself and I said, “well, if you want to phrase it like *that*” and she just died laughing and said, “DID I JUST GET EDITED?”

    But the real question is is The Maze Runner worth reading? I read the first book and it was okay and I kind of want to know what happens, but if the writing isn’t good I’ll be just as fulfilled if I read the Wikipedia page :p

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mei-Mei May 27, 2015 / 11:45 pm

      I guess it really depends on how much you liked the first book, and that genre in general. I found them fun and thought they all had good action and suspense. If you couldn’t really get into the first book or care about the characters, just read Wikipedia ~_^

      Liked by 1 person

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