Home / Books / Discuss: What Books Don’t Live Up to the Hype?

Discuss: What Books Don’t Live Up to the Hype?

I’ve had some serious hype problems lately. I dig into a book that has gotten RAVE reviews that people won’t stop talking about. And lo and behold. It’s a total dud.

Discuss: What Books Don’t Live Up to the Hype?

over hyped books oprah book club

(If Oprah likes it, it’s a bestseller).

So the question I have for you is:

What books have you read that have gotten ALL THE HYPE that totally let you down??

If you aren’t sure what books fall into that category, some very helpful Goodread-ers have compiled this list of Popular Hyped Books and Most Over Hyped and Annoying Books Ever.

We’re talking Twilight, The Da Vinci Code, The Notebook.

For me, the books that let me down the most were YA specific hyped books. Recently…The Maze Runner. I hate admitting it, but I just don’t see how it rocked people’s worlds! It was good, don’t get me wrong. But it wasn’t great.

I feel like there should be a support group for people who don’t like hyped books. It’s like if you say you didn’t like Pride and Prejudice or something and people turn on you (but, seriously, if you didn’t like P&P, we can’t be friends…).

Another recently was Red Rising. I couldn’t turn around online without tripping over a 5-star review of this book.

For me, it was a kind of a dud. I got why people liked it, but I just didn’t connect.

Am I totally alone on these?! Or do you have your own guilty hype-hating feelings?

About Lisa Parkin

I'm a hardcore lover of young adult fiction and have been reviewing books since 2011. Other interests include Downton Abbey, heat lightning storms, Harry Potter land and (begrudingly) one orange tabby.
  • I hate to admit it, but the Hunger Games is the one for me. Everyone kept talking about it like they did with Twilight, which I loved, so I figured I’d better read it. I could barely get through the first few chapters. The storyline, a bunch of kids fighting each other to the death, and it’s the adults in their communities who set the whole thing up? Really?! Nope! Definitely not for me.

    • Aww that’s a bummer! I personally loved it, but I went into it without knowing anything. I think that made a huge difference for me. I totally feel ya, though.

      • Thanks Lisa. I’m reading Divergent now. I hope it’s a better experience 🙂

  • Kayla @ The Thousand Lives

    I didn’t love the Maze Runner either – it felt like a knockoff of Lord of the Flies. I enjoyed it well enough, but not that OMG THIS IS THE BEST BOOK EVER feeling that I saw everyone else have!

  • tam

    I never got into the Twilight hype, maybe it’s something I need to re-read but I am not a massive fan of paranormal/ vampire elements. I prefer other fantasy-style books and dystopian ones. Sorry you didn’t like The Maze Runner, I thought it was good and enjoyed but as you said probably not the best thing out there. I am looking forward to the film and seeing how they reconstruct the maze!
    Its not a YA book but I thought Gone Girl was totally overrated, the writing style didn’t appeal to me at all. Tam x

    • It’s funny, even though I enjoyed Twilight at the time, I didn’t get into the hype either. I always felt like it was a guilty pleasure, haha. YES about Gone Girl!!! I felt sick days after reading it :/

  • Christine Stitt

    I definitely agree with Andrea about Hunger Games! Glad to know I’m not the only one who thought “a bunch of kids fighting each other to the death, and it’s the adults in their communities who set the whole thing up” was ridiculous.

    Another on my list… The Help. They wayyyyy over-hyped that one! 🙂

    • Aww, bummer Christine! I never read The Help, but I wanted to. I think the movie probably skyrocketed its popularity.

  • Sugar & Snark

    My recent one has been Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist.It wasn’t bad, but just wasn’t a wow at all!

    • That’s surprising! Did you see the movie? And, if so, did you like it better?

      • Sugar & Snark

        I saw it a very long time ago. Going to re-watch and get back to you 🙂

        • Sugar & Snark

          Watching it now, already half way through and can already say I like the movie better! 🙂

  • I just finished reading The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken, which has a GR rating of 4.23. I thought the book was alright, rated it a 3, and then saw that average rating. I couldn’t wrap my head around it, checked out all those rave reviews and I’m still left asking, “What’s so great about this book?” Same with Alienated by Melissa Landers. So many people seemed to like it a lot but it wasn’t worth more than 2 stars for me.

    Twilight for me was bearable, mostly because I listened to the audiobooks while I was overhauling my bedroom a few years back. I DNF-ed The Da Vinci Code with 50 pages to go and that was during a time that I had a rule about finishing every book I started. I’ve not tried reading The Notebook but I tried watching the movie. I couldn’t do it. My mind was wailing and even after skipping a few scenes here and there, I still couldn’t get into it.

    For the most part I ignore the hype. If something catches my interest, I’ll read it, regardless of whether others liked it or not. I’ve come to love books people thought were mediocre, and also loved books for which I only found out afterwards they were hyped. Like Divergent. I really had no idea how hyped up it was when I read it but loved it all the same. In fact, I’m glad I didn’t go in reading it with all these expectations attached.