Top Ten Underrated Gems

We’ve talked about underrated books for Top Ten Tuesday before, but today’s prompt was slightly different, going by GoodReads ratings to helps judge book popularity. I admit, I was kind of shocked to discover that some of the books I’ve loved so much have such small numbers of ratings, and this makes me want to urge everyone I know to read every single one of them! The prompt tells us to look for books with under 2000 ratings, but this makes up about a quarter of my 1000 reads, so I narrowed even further to under 1000 ratings, and chose my favorite ten of them.

Note that the following list doesn’t include childhood favorites, classics (which I think aren’t at all underrated despite not getting as many ratings on GR), or most nonfiction (since my nonfic tends to push closer toward semi-academic). In order of ratings (numbers as of this morning), least to greatest, here are my top ten:

crossed-wires1. Crossed Wires by Rosy Thornton (101) – I cried when I saw this book only had 101 ratings. Really? Oh people this one is so good! Ignore the cheesy cover! Read it! Or The Tapestry of Love, or Ninepins, both of which have under 250 ratings.

2. Firstborn by Lorie Ann Grover (255) – I’ve been raving about this one for a year. Gender-bending fantasy with some of the best person-animal bonds I’ve ever read, and I don’t like person-animal bonds normally!

3. Nekropolis by Maureen McHugh (392) – Science fiction dystopia in a Middle Eastern setting, so very good!

4. Gothic Charm School by Jillian Venters (565) – I left out most nonfiction but I adored this one too much to ignore. I wish it had wider reach. So funny and an informative counter-culture study.

kidtable5. The Kid Table by Andrea Seigel (576) – For anyone with big, wacky families involving lots of cousins who are more like siblings than cousins.

6. The Barnum Museum by Steven Millhauser (649) – I first got this in order to read the story behind the movie The Illusionist, but fell in love with multiple titles, and still find myself thinking of some of them a decade later.

7. Around the World in 80 Diets by Peter Menzel (654) – Amazing photographic look at caloric intake in cultures around the world. This was the only other nonfiction to make my list, because the cross-cultural perspective was eye-opening and mind-boggling.

if you follow me8. If You Follow Me by Malena Watrous (845) – LGBT fiction set in Japan, also dealing with being a foreigner and death in the family and culture shock and so many other things. Great book!

9. The Untelling by Tayari Jones (879) – Tayari Jones is an amazing author who never fails to dazzle me. This is a careful look at life in inner city, poverty-stricken Atlanta, with historical portraits of race relations in the mid-1900s.

10. The Trouble With Destiny by Lauren Morrill (884) – I actually had a difficult time believing this one had so few ratings given that Morrill is a popular current YA author. This is a fun, light read set on a cruise ship!!

So? You know what to do! Go get on it and read these books! Give them the attention they deserve! Go go go! 😀


Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

About Amanda

Writing. Family. Books. Crochet. Fitness. Fashion. Fun. Not necessarily in that order. Note: agender (she/her).
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3 Responses to Top Ten Underrated Gems

  1. _giovannard says:

    This is my first time hearing about these books! I need to look into them ASAP! My TBR is just getting bigger and BIGGER!! Great Top Ten! 😀
    My Top Ten Tuesday!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Kailana says:

    I am learning about so many books from this prompt! So many books to try out!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Amanda says:

    I hope everyone can find a new gem from this prompt! It really has been a great one.


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