Bookish Rambling: Five Highly Anticipated Books I Chose Not to Read

Following on from the success of my bookish rambling last month about highly anticipated books I forgot to read, I decided to return to the subject – this time focusing on books that, for one reason or another, had a huge hype surrounding their release. The books listed were not necessarily highly anticipated releases for me but more for the bookish community in general – they may have had a big media promotion surrounding their release or books that were just everywhere I looked.

#1 Into the Water by Paula Hawkins

After the huge success of The Girl on the Train, the world was waiting with bated breath for Paula Hawkins next release. I’m sure you’re all as fed up as I am with books being labelled the next Girl on the Train’ – this marketing ploy never really works for me as I didn’t love The Girl on the Train, I thought it was good but I never really understood the hype surrounding it so this caption is irrelevant to me, and I’m plain fed up of seeing it. But, if there was ever going to be a book as hyped, and was indeed ‘the next Girl on the Train’, surely it would come from the author herself, in the form of Into the Water.

“A single mother turns up dead at the bottom of the river that runs through town. Earlier in the summer, a vulnerable teenage girl met the same fate. They are not the first women lost to these dark waters, but their deaths disturb the river and its history, dredging up secrets long submerged.”

Never say never, but I have no plans to read this book; if I was given a free copy, sure it’d go on the TBR but many moons may pass before I actually read it. It has an average Goodreads rating of 3.53, so I ask you – did it really live up to it’s hype?

#2 The Breakdown by B.A. Paris

If I said B.A. Paris, you’d probably think Behind Closed Doors, the hype surrounding that book was crazy, immediately The Breakdown became a highly anticipated book for psychological thriller fans everywhere.

“If you can’t trust yourself, who can you trust?

It all started that night in the woods.

Cass Anderson didn’t stop to help the woman in the car, and now she’s dead.

Everywhere, except in my household that is, I had and have no desire to read The Breakdown, I was not a fan of Behind Closed Doors; it was not easy because the pull of the hype was so strong and I felt left out of many conversations but I knew this was not a book I wanted to read and there’s nothing worse than going into a novel expecting to dislike it.

#3 The Lying Game by Ruth Ware

The Lying Game

This is perhaps the oddest one on the list and I can’t explain my desire to not want to read it. I absolutely loved Ware’s previous novel, The Woman in Cabin 10, I’m talking five star love, but for some reason I was happy to let this highly anticipated book pass me by. Even the lying game that was being “played” on Twitter had no effect on me.

“Four friends. One promise. But someone isn’t telling the truth. The twisting new mystery from bestselling phenomenon Ruth Ware.”

Initially, this was a highly anticipated book for me, added to my wishlist, but when the publication date came, I just did not want to read it. I expect I will read it at some point but the desire to read it just vanished and hasn’t come back since. Although, I’m thinking this is not such a bad thing as I’m learning that sometimes it’s better to wait for the hype to pass so my expectations are more realistic.

#4 The Child by Fiona Barton

Now, I know half of you are immediately thinking The Child was not a highly anticipated book. But I think it was, I know it was flooding my social media feed at one point. I’m aware The Widow was a marmite book – many loved it, many hated it. Personally, I think The Widow fell victim to its marketing – firstly, likening it to Gone Girl was not a smart move. Secondly, “perfect to fill the void of Girl on the Train” – really, really, REALLY!! I enjoyed The Widow and felt a little bit defensive of it as it was marketed as a different novel to the one we ended up reading. Anyway, the point is, I planned to read Barton’s next book.

“As an old house is demolished in a gentrifying section of London, a workman discovers a tiny skeleton, buried for years. For journalist Kate Waters, it s a story that deserves attention. She cobbles together a piece for her newspaper, but at a loss for answers, she can only pose a question: Who is the Building Site Baby?  As Kate investigates, she unearths connections to a crime that rocked the city decades earlier.”

And these plans were aborted when I read the synopsis, it just didn’t appeal to me and I chose not to read it.

#5 He Said/She Said by Erin Kelly

Of all the books mentioned today, this is the only author I have never read before, so I had no reason to not be drawn in by the hype, no preconceptions. The five star reviews were rolling in, people saying this book was everything they thought it would be and more. And I just happily let it pass me by.

“Who do you believe?

In the hushed aftermath of a total eclipse, Laura witnesses a brutal attack.

She and her boyfriend Kit call the police, and in that moment, it is not only the victim’s life that is changed forever.”

This is simply another instance of the synopsis did not make me want to read this book, it’s no more complicated than that.


All the books listed above are psychological thrillers and I believe that’s the genre of crime fiction that gets the biggest marketing push, thus making them the most highly anticipated books. I browsed the net and found so many book lists, professional and blogger, that listed these books as: highly anticipated releases, must reads, book club selections, even appearing in posts from last year stating these are books to watch out for in 2017. Well, I watched out for them, saw them coming, ducked, missed them and moved on.

What highly anticipated books have you chosen not to read?

46 thoughts on “Bookish Rambling: Five Highly Anticipated Books I Chose Not to Read

  1. You little rebel. 😂

    Totally agree with you on Paula Hawkins and have no intention of reading that one either.

    The Breakdown, I did read and enjoy but I thought her first one was better.

    He said/She said, another one I enjoyed but not sure it deserved all the hype.

    And like you I’m sick and tired of the Girl Gone and Girl on the Train comparisons. I didn’t even like Gone Girl all that much. There’s also the ones that promise a brilliant twist you didn’t see coming. Ugh, just stop already! Most of the time you do see it coming and it’s not brilliant whatsoever 😂

    Liked by 3 people

    1. From your comment, it would appear you are a little rebel also! 😂

      And yes, stop with the ‘brilliant twist’ strategy, surely they can come up with something more creative. Readers would probably be more surprised by the twist if they didn’t mention anything about it!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I wonder why too because I love a good police procedural 😂

      I think waiting for the hype to pass before reading He Said/She Said is a good idea, you’ll probably enjoy it more if you’re not expecting it to be great but just enjoying the story as it comes 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  2. No intention to read Into The Water either. I did read The Breakdown but I didn’t find it exceptional.. I still haven’t read Behind Closed Doors but I guess I still had pretty high expectations. I don’t think I’ll read the one that’s coming out shortly either. I have HeSaid/SheSaid and I expect it to be so good that I might save it to read in January so it can go on my fav list of next year already (crazy I know).

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I really hope He Said/She Said lives up to the hype for you! I’ve got one of the Kelly’s older books on my shelf so I’ll read that at some point.

      Tbh, I don’t think you’re missing anything at all by not reading Behind Closed Doors – I won’t be reading the latest one either.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I love this post! You should make it a meme. I plan on reading The Breakdown and Lying Game, but not Hawkins (didn’t care much for Girl on Train). Also didn’t care for He Said/She Said, but one that would go on my list is A Stranger in the House and I broke down and read it (5 star for me!) but this one had the opposite hype-poor ratings!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, I’m so happy you enjoyed this post – feel free to do your own one 🙂 I enjoyed A Stranger in the House too, I do know why it’s getting such a bad rep, maybe because it’s not as entertaining as The Couple Next Door 🤔

      I probably will read The Lying Game at some point in my life but not any time soon! And I’m interested to see what you think of The Breakdown, that I won’t read, nor the latest release either and I’m starting to see that all over Twitter already!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I don’t even read crime/thriller and I was sick of seeing “the next Girl on the Train” blurb. Do does kinds of tags ever really work? For me personally, ther are so off-putting. Same goes for “the next Gone Girl”. Like, please, there won’t be a next Gone Girl 😂

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I’m on this rebel train with you😂I haven’t read any of those and don’t intend to. I didn’t like the author’s previous book in every case except Erin Kelly’s, for that one I just wasn’t interested in the whole eclipse storyline. Fun post!!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Ooh, I loved The Breakdown, but I also loved Behind Closed Doors! 😄 I haven’t liked either of a Ruth Ware’s books, but still added The Lying Game to my TBR because it interested me! I loved The Widow, but was disappointed and bored by The Child. 😝 I got an ARC of He Said/She Said and went on to not read it after not getting into it after the first couple of chapters, unfortunately. And I have Into The Water on my TBR because it interests me (even though I thought Girl on the Train was meh).

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Into the Water – not going to read it either. I struggled to get through The Girl on the Train.
    The Breakdown – read it, I didn’t think it was awful, it made a great beach read for me on vacation.
    The Child – my first by this author. It was alright, but I probably won’t read another one.
    He Said, She Said – I tied but wasn’t feeling it.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Seems like I made the right choice not to read these, haha. I am curious to watch the Girl on the Train film because I don’t how they managed to make it into a blockbuster, surely like 90% of the film is a girl riding a train 😂
      I was so tempted by He Said/She Said because the early reviews were saying its great, then another batch of reviews came saying it was ‘meh’ so that confirmed I won’t read it 😂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. My husband and I go to the movies fairly often and every time that trailer would come on I would groan. I pushed through the book, but there was no way I was going to sit through the movie lol
        You will have to let me know what you think of it if you see it.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. I did read Into the Water and I can honestly say it’s not a must read by any stretch. I really did not love it. I LOVED Fiona Barton’s first and was “highly anticipating” The Child. I didn’t get an early read opportunity and then the buzz (or lack of) about the book left me feeling like I didn’t need to pick it up.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It’s interesting how much the hype surrounding a book influences your decision to read it, or not. If I had received an early copy of The Child, I’d have read it because I liked The Widow. There’s so many books, but I think we all find a way of separating highly anticipated books from must read book.


      1. I find that I don’t read a lot of those books that just seem to be everywhere! Sometime I feel out of the loop but mostly they are books that just don’t appeal to me for whatever reason.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. The hype is probably off putting, sometimes I feel like if I don’t read it in the mist of the hype then why read it all because everyone’s moved on! I must admit, I get pulled into the hype so often but I’m trying now not to because I have so many books, I really want to read even though no one talking about them.

        Liked by 1 person

  9. I actually enjoyed Into the Water more than Girl on the Train. GOTT is a book I would only read once. But ITW was so weird and fascinating all at once. The cast of characters was rather large, but I enjoyed the story.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. 🤷 haha I’m learning that’s it’s ok to like/dislike books other people don’t like/dislike. It’s nice to hear different opinions and views! Looking forward to being a follower!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I agree, I often find reviews for books I didn’t enjoy some of my favourite to read – how certain elements worked for others that didn’t work for me 🙂


  10. So, like you I haven’t bought any of these, but I have picked some up in the library when they have been prominently displayed in the entrance area…
    I liked The Widow, read it early and don’t think the hype influenced me and I really liked The Child.
    The Lying Game – this was a library book but I felt quite annoyed at myself because unlike you I hadn’t been especially impressed by the other 2. It seems for me though as well as never DNFing books if they make it through my front door they don’t leave until I read them. So reluctantly I picked up The Lying Game and having finished it today can say it was my favourite Ruth Ware book to date… not a 5 star read by any means but it was fine.
    The others, in the same way will make it into my house from the library and I will compliantly read.
    Another hyped book that snuck into by library back against my better judgement was the new one by the author of The Couple Next Door (can’t even remember the name of the book, despite it being upstairs and I definitely wasn’t a fan of that first book 😂😂🙈

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s called A Stranger in the House 😂😂 I enjoyed it, not at much as The Couple Next Door which I loved for it’s entertainment factor!

      For someone who never DNFs books you, of all people, should be super choosy about which books you bring home 😂 but at least you’re borrowing them from the library!

      The Lying Game is the only one I’ll probably end up reading because I love TWIC 10.

      I don’t know, I just have no desire to read The Child, despite liking The Widow 🤔

      Goddamn this hyped books 😂😂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I do find that – there’ll be a book I’ll hear about and think “that sounds amazing!” and then I keep hearing about it and go off it completely!

        Liked by 1 person

  11. Great post!! Funny enough, I have only read ONE of the books on your list for the same reason! Some are on my TBR, and when I first heard about them, I really wanted to read them but over time, the buzz has lost its luster for me. You might want to consider reading The Lying Game. It was an unexpected gem for me and I really enjoyed reading about the girls’ friendship and the underlying mystery which tied the past and present.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks! Of all mentioned, I probably will end up reading The Lying Game, just not right now, I don’t want to go into a read feeling negative 🙂 That’s what I’m learning, you gotta read super-hyped books in the midst of the hype or sometimes you run the risk of the hype “wearing off” and you no longer want to read them.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. It’s funny because I also chose not to read Paula Hawkins, I wish I had done the same with The breakdown and ignored the others too except for He said She said (It’s on the TBR)

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Love this post and although I’m holiday I thought I should comment He Said She Said definitely over hyped and ok read but all the eclipse stuff grated on me. The Breakdown was another ok read and the rest I’m in no hurry to read. I always struggle with over hyped books as my expectations are high from the start and more often than not I’m left disappointed x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad you enjoyed this post enough to interrupt your holiday ☺️ I wonder the thought that goes into giving certain books that extra push in publicity (maybe previous sales 🤔). I’ve read so many great books (by mainstream publishers) that didn’t receive this level of hype, but then again, if they had, I might not have read them lol.


  14. Are these titles all sequels to best sellers? I too hate the overuse of comparisons when hyping a title. Sometimes though, the second novel does not disappoint. For example after the success of Clare Mackintosh’s “I let you go”, (which I loved), I went on to read her “I see you” and I loved that one just as much.
    Of the titles you listed above, “The Child” is the only one I DO plan to read.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I was just mentioned to Lorraine in my previous comment that perhaps it’s previous book sales that determine the marketing push for these titles. And I wholeheartedly agree, I loved both of Claire’s books! Perhaps I’d have loved these authors previous books, I wouldn’t mind the marketing push they got 🤔 the psychology of it all is very interesting lol.

      Liked by 1 person

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