Matthew: Have you ever read a book or watched a movie and thought it was great, but then the sequel came out and you had the opposite reaction? That’s what we’re looking at next on Bad Books, Good Times: what makes a sequel go bad.
Ariel recently read Sarah J Maas’s A Court of Thorns and Roses and was a fan, but then started messaging me every day about how much she hated the sequel, A Court of Mist and Fury. Of course, we can’t just dive into a sequel on this blog. So what we’re going to do is spend about a month quickly recapping the first book, talking about what we like and ways the story works. Then with that groundwork taken care of, we’ll do it standard chapter-by-chapter approach to the sequel, talking about how it all goes wrong.
Admittedly, I’m still going into both of these blind and it’s possible I’m not gonna like them at all, but Ariel and I don’t disagree on much. Plus, won’t it be refreshing to (maybe??) read a good book on this blog for a change? For a month until the book’s sequel goes, “About that? Never mind.”
Ariel: Reading ACOTAR was such an interesting experience for me. I was so sure going into it that I was going to hate it, and there were definitely things that made me roll my eyes in the story or gave me pause, but ultimately? Man, I was into it. I finished the book and couldn’t stop thinking about the characters, my favourite scenes, why I forgave some things that would have annoyed me in another story, and some of the moments that had surprised me most in the story.
I got about 25% of the way through the sequel, and as Matt said, I just couldn’t stop bitching to him about it. It was like I’d stumbled onto shitty fanfiction about the first book. So far it’s taken pretty much all the things I praised about the first book and just pooped all over them. I stopped reading as soon as we decided to write about it on the blog, so part of me is worried I’ll have a change of heart, but what a fun twist that could be! And somehow I just doubt it. My main fear is that because Maas’ writing itself is good most of the time, it won’t be as easy to blog about as the other books we read. I think it really could be fun, though, and generate some good discussions. At worst, we’ll jump ship, and at best we’ll have a blast.