Mercedes over at my favourite booktube channel MercysBookishMusings recently did a thing where she predicted five books she thought she would adore so much she would give them five stars; later she then had a look at how that went. I think this is a brilliant idea and I am eager to see if I am any good at predicting which books I will adore. You’d think, having read as many books in my life a I have, that I’d have a pretty good grasp at what will be a five star read for me, however ever since I started writing reviews I have come to realize that this is often not the case (exhibit a, exhibit b).
Five star reads for me are a combination of many things:
- vivid language,
- brilliant characters,
- innovative story telling,
- emotional response (helpful but not necessary).
For this list I went through my Goodreads to read shelf and then went with how I felt. Let’s see how this approach pays off.
number9dream – David Mitchell
At first glance this seems a sure in; it is David Mitchell doing what David Mitchell does best. I gave two of his books five stars and three four stars. He is one of my favourite authors. But on the other hand, some people I trust think this is by far his weakest work. But I do trust David Mitchell. So I guess, I’ll have to read and see.
Human Acts – Han Kang
Again, I am going with a book by an author whose work I have previously enjoyed. The Vegetarian is one of my favourite books of the last few years and one with imagery that stayed with me. I have been waiting to be in the right mood for this because this seems like it’s very very grim.
This just seems like a book I will adore. I have been wanting to get to Angela Carter sooner rather than later. Everything I heard of her sounds just so brilliant and I don’t even know why I haven’t read anything of hers. The edition I own looks so beyond beautiful and just like a me-book.
Snow in May – Kseniya Melnik
Short stories? Short stories set in snowy locations? Interconnected, bleak short stories set in the snowy North of Russia? Sign me right up. This sounds so much up my alley it is a bit ridiculous. Also, every time I look up this book, I wonder why I have not already read it. Because, see above. How can I not love this?
The Sea Beast Takes a Lover: Stories – Michael Andreasen
First off, I love that title. Second: “Bewitching and playful, with its feet only slightly tethered to the world we know, The Sea Beast Takes a Lover explores hope, love, and loss across a series of surreal landscapes and wild metamorphoses.” (From the blurb) Need I say more?
I will try and get to these books sooner rather than later – but I am a fickle reader and there is not telling if I will feel like reading any of them soon. Which is stupid now that I think about it.
Can you usually tell if a book will be a five star read for you? Also, you should all join in this prediction tag, so that I have somebody to laugh with when inevitably I am dead wrong about at least half these books.