Book Favourites

Underrated Novels

Hello, hope you’re having a wonderful Sunday/whatever day you happen to be reading this on!

As an avid bookworm, I read a plethora of genres, which include novels written by worldwide bestselling authors that everyone knows about, but also secret little gems from less known authors. Additionally there are plenty of books by well known authors that don’t get as much credit as that one major bestseller they wrote once.

Whilst reading I’ve come across several novels which I feel are underrated and more people should read them; which is why I’m sharing them with you today!

1. A Special Delivery – Clare Downing

Every family has its ups and downs… 

Aisling Brady is miserable. So is her husband Mossy. The three kids are too. Yet nobody dares says a thing. Instead the Brady’s keep their heads down and grimly look forward to another miserable Christmas in Dublin. 

What Aisling doesn’t know is that this year, they will get the most unexpected gift of all. One that will bring joy and heartbreak, hope and a string of sleepless nights. 

As their world is turned upside down, questions have to be asked. But are the Brady’s ready to face the truth about themselves? And what each of them has done?

I picked up this book well over a year ago because it was on a 90% off sale or something ridiculous like that so I decided to purchase it. When I first started reading it (start of this week!) I was beginning to regret my decision. But the end of chapter cliffhangers and questions kept me intrigued enough to carry on reading; and I’m so glad I did. The storyline really began to pick up and by the end I was itching for the conclusion which was completely shocking and unexpected (I finished it late last night!)

2. Before I Die – Jenny Downham

It’s really going to happen. They said it would, but this is quicker than anyone thought. 

Sixteen-year-old Tessa is going to die. And she’s made a list of ten things she wants to do in the time she has left. But getting what you want isn’t easy. And getting what you want doesn’t always give you what you need. And sometimes the most unexpected things become important. 

Uplifting, life-affirming, joyous – this extraordinary novel celebrates what it is to be alive by confronting what it’s really like to die.

I read this book a few years ago, and I was hooked on the storyline. When it came to the last few chapters I was anticipating that heart dreading conclusion, (we know it will happen because of the title), but I was desperate for her story to continue. Unfortunately as we are aware in real life, our lives can be cut short at any point, even if like Tessa you are given an expiry date, it can still be unexpected. This novel makes you appreciate the time you’ve got, and right now with all that’s happening in the world, I think that’s more important than ever. 

3. Outlaw – Michael Morpurgo 

“Tell everyone in Nottingham, that the Outlaws rule here in Sherwood, that we rule in the kings name… I am Robin Hood.” 

Lost in a dark, strange forest, Robin is rescued by a crew of misfits. He yearns to seek justice against his cruel oppressors, to finally defeat the Sheriff of Nottingham, once and for all. 

After a fierce storm, a boy of today discovers a human skull, buried beneath the roots of an ancient tree. A skull with a legendary past: the heroic story of Robin Hood.

Again, another novel I was completely hooked on. I read this book because as you may or may not be aware, I want to be an author, particularly to write young adult fiction, and Michael Morpurgo is an excellent children’s/young adult author! The parallels between the present and the past are linked by the name Robin Hood, and ultimately his history. I’m sure you all know the history of Robin Hood, but this novel focuses more on the character development as well as reminding us to look past class status and oppressive forces that abuse their position of power, which is a moral I’m thankful Morpurgo is displaying to an readers of a younger age.

4. Firefly Lane – Kristin Hannah

Firefly Lane is a story you’ll never forget and one you’ll want to pass on to your best friend…

In the turbulent summer of 1974, Kate Mularkey has accepted her place at the bottom of the social food-chain at school. Then, to her amazement, the ‘coolest girl in the world’ moves in across the street and wants to be her friend. Tully Hart seems to have it all – beauty, brains, ambition. On the surface they are as opposite as two people can be, but they made a pact to be best friends forever; by summers end they’ve become TullyandKate. Inseparable.

For thirty years Tully and Kate buoy each other through life, weathering the storms of friendship, jealousy, anger, hurt and resentment. Tully follows her ambition to find fame and success. Kate knows that all she wants is to fall in love and have a family but what she doesn’t know is how being a wife and mother will change her. They think they’ve survived it all until a single act of betrayal tears them apart and puts thei courage and lifelong friendship to the ultimate test.

Firefly Lane is the story of a generation of women who were both blessed and cursed by choices and is a story for every woman who knows that her best friend is the one person who really, truly understands her…

Not going to lie; this was a cover buy. I saw the beautiful cover and wanted the book, but what I didn’t know was that this story would stay with me. Some books we read and sure they were great, but we forget about them and their storylines, but this novel has truly stuck with me. I loved this book, it was simultaneously heart warming and heart breaking; but I don’t want to give away the story for you!

5. Thanks for the Memories – Cecelia Ahern

How can you know someone you’ve never met?

Joyce Conway remembers things she shouldn’t. She knows about tiny cobbled streets in Paris, which she has never visited. And every night she dreams about an unknown girl with blonde hair.

Justin Hitchcock is divorced, lonely and restless. He arrives in Dublin to give a lecture on art and is persuaded to donate blood. It’s the first thing to come straight from his heart in a long time. 

When Joyce leaves hospital after a terrible accident, with her life and her marriage in pieces, she moves back in with her elderly father. All the while, a strong sense of déjà vu is overwhelming her and she can’t figure out why…

The wonderful Cecelia Ahern; one of my all time favourite authors. This novel encapsulates a love story but not in the conventional way. The story provides the reader with laughter, tears, shock and wonder; what every good novel should be. I can’t express my love for this novel without revealing spoilers so I’ll let you explore this amazing novel for your own.

Thank you for reading this post! Let me know if you have any favourite underrated novels you think more people should know about, share with each other down in the comments!

Jade Anna x


9 thoughts on “Underrated Novels

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