Wednesday, 7 September 2011

I Have Never... Conformed to Peer Pressure!

When I was at university, we used to play a daft combination of truth or dare and drinking game called 'I Have Never' - at university, it involved making "risque" statements like "I have never... had a threesome!" Everyone who had, or at least was willing to confess would have to stand and take a drink. I'm bringing it to my blog in an irregular series, with less alcohol, but asking the questions that can be considered a little risque in the book blogging world and listing the answers here. This is a massive just for fun exercise and do join in with comments and tales of your own. I'll even accept drunken university tales in lieu of actual replies to the questions.

So... I have never conformed to peer pressure. By this, I mean that I have never toed the party line when it comes to books *everyone* seems to love or blogs *everyone* seems to love. I have never said that I loved or hated something just because everyone else did! Hell, when I was fourteen and every girl in my school loved Take That, I was listening to Iron Maiden instead *grins*

I did not say that I loved Embassytown when everyone else was heaping praise on it - in fact, I'm still yet to finish it. I did not say that I loved The Lord of the Rings, even when it seems as though most other people do. I did not say that I hated The Left Hand of God just because I thought the rest of the blogosphere would say the same.

I have come close. I have mentioned my disdain for Terry Goodkind's Sword of Truth series when, in fact, I haven't read them in many years and so might actually like them!

In most cases, I tend to go my own way. My two favourite SFF authors are Charles de Lint and Michael Marshall Smith, and I'm not sure many in the blogosphere would say the same.

Now, your turn! 'Fess up! Did you say you loved The Hunger Games trilogy just because everyone else geeked out about it? Or are you the lone voice crying out against a popular novel (as I was with There is No Dog)?


  1. You guys stood up playing 'Never Have I Ever'? Thank god we never heard of the stand up rule!

    There are some books I have disliked that some people liked, but I don't think its that dramatic. I didn't like Goodkind either, I didn't make it through the first book, and I am usually not one to set a story down.

    Beth ^_^

  2. I suppose my biggest "I hated it even though everyone else loved it" book is THE GOOD THIEF by Hannah Tinti. I loathed it so much that I almost wonder if I read the same book as everyone else.

    I've had a few other reading hiccups, too. I sometimes feel like I'm the only person who disliked THE STRANGELY BEAUTIFUL TALE OF MISS PERCY PARKER by Leanna Renee Hieber. Twitter, thankfully, convinced me I'm not the only person who didn't enjoy CITY OF BONES by Cassandra Clare. And I'm sorry to report that I didn't much like LOW TOWN/THE STRAIGHT RAZOR CURE by Daniel Polansky. I feel bad about that, since the author contacted me himself about a review copy, but at least the rest of the blogosphere has given him great reviews.

    I've also had laclustre, though not negative, reactions to a number of highly hyped books. I liked, but didn't love, THE HUNGER GAMES, THE KNIFE OF NEVER LETTING GO, and LOOKING FOR ALASKA.

    As far as books I loved that everyone else disliked... I can't think of any sweeping examples, but I was rather surprised at all the negative comments re: THE WISE MAN'S FEAR floating around on Twitter. I loved it to death. I've heard that many people disliked THE MAP OF TIME by Felix J. Palma, too. It's one of my favourite books of 2011.

  3. Tchaikovsky's Shadows of the Apt. To the point where it's as if everyone else read a completely different series - praising it where I didn't just find it middling or passable, but actually didn't like reading it at all. Bit strong, I know, and from everything I've heard he sounds like a lovely bloke which makes it feel a bit odd.

    And I didn't like Cassandra Clare's City of Bones either. I read the entire series and it's just calorie-less fodder, harmless but nothing special, unlike series like Richelle Mead's Vampire Academy.

    Also, George Mann. I want to like his output, I really do, it should be exactly - *exactly!* - my kind of thing, but I've yet to enjoy even a single page. Again I feel mean saying it because he also sounds like he's lovely. But then authors and books aren't the same entities.

  4. Ah, wouldn't it be boring if we all liked the same thing. (As my Mum used to say... reckon I'm turning into her!)

    It was Michael Jackson for me when my mates all loved Take That and New Kids ;)

    Older one for me - I recently re-bought The Book Of Lost Things which I love and was surprised recently to read some of the quite scathing comments on Amazon. Angel by L.A Weatherley I really didn't get on with and thought I'd love it going by other blog reviews.

  5. I had to wait a little while before Iron Maiden called to me, but then I went without hesitation :P

    I don't think that I ever go with the crowd on things, but if popular consensus jars completely with my viewpoint, I'll normally pick up a book and flick through it again to see where the difference in opinion comes from. That's what happened with Goodkind. I adored the Sword of Truth series on my first read, but only because it was my introduction to the fantasy genre (and the only adult fantasy I had ever read). Since reading through again, I picked up on all of the smothering philosophy, gratuitous sex and general assery :P

  6. I've never said I liked something when I didn't. It's made me unpopular fairly often, but I've never understood the practice of lying for such reasons.

  7. Oh god, we used to play "I've never..." as well...Too many embarrassing memories to count!!!

    I've never truly caved to peer pressure, and in fact in some cases this has worked against me. When Harry Potter first became a phenomenon, I refused to read it, because I thought if it was that hyped it couldn't be good. Of course, once I actually took the trouble to at least read the first one, after the fourth one came out, I absolutely loved them. And even though I did love Take That, I was the only one in my school to also adore Blur, Oasis and Pulp.

    That being said, I haven't read any of the Twilight books based on derision heaped on them, so maybe I have caved to peer pressure?