Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Don’t Remember Reading (But I Did)

I have a really bad memory when it comes to books that aren’t my favorite. I can often look at a book and remember I enjoyed it but not why I enjoyed it. And some books I can’t remember anything about them all yet I can tell you everything that happened to the Ingalls family in the Little House books or what shenanigans Ramona Quimby got herself into in Beverly Cleary’s books. But a book I read a month ago? What about a few days ago? Yeah, no. Sometimes people will ask me about books and I’ll stare at the cover with my head tilted to the side and my brain completely blank on what the book was about. So here are ten books I don’t remember reading.

(This week’s Top Ten Tuesday prompt is Books I Really Liked but Can’t Remember Anything/Much About.)

Insurgent by Veronica Roth: I’ve read this book twice and I still have no idea what the significance was. Seriously, I read it when it first came out and later when I re-read the books via the audiobooks I had no memory of the book. Now? I think they were in Amity for a while, but… that’s it?

Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen: Sometimes I claim this is one of my favorite Austen books (along with Emma), but honestly, I don’t remember much of what happens in it. I know [name] goes to stay with Henry Tilney’s family and the movie version of Mr. Tilney is a beautiful person, but I can’t recall why they fall in love or what other conflict/plot was happening other than her assumptions about the spooky old house and the rumors of murder and mayhem. (Do you see how I can’t even remember the heroine’s name? Oops.)

Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt: I can remember the basic premise of this book with the whole “fountain of youth” spring and the girl who meets the boy from the family that is immortal. But that’s it. No names, no plot/conflict, no setting details. Oh, but I do remember the ending, which is probably one of the worst endings of a book I have read. I’m still angry about that stupid toad.

Books by Melody Carlson: I read a lot of her books in middle school and high school, and honestly most of them just kind of blend together into teenage angst and drama. I think I enjoyed reading them, but I don’t really know what the difference was between her various series.

Fire by Kristin Cashore: I loved Graceling and liked Bitterblue even more, but I was never satisfied with Fire. The only thing I can distinctly recall from that book is a moment where Fire unveils her red hair during some kind of dramatic scene. Was it a battle? Was it a frolic through the woods? Was it in front of a crowd? No idea. I think I should reread the whole series because I think I’d appreciate Fire a little bit more now that I’m older.

The Scorch Trials by James Dashner: Earlier this month, I finally read The Death Cure after four years of grumbling about The Scorch Trials. Did I remember anything that had happened in the second book? No, I did not. I even re-watched the movies recently and couldn’t remember anything significant about the second installment except it always seemed like Thomas was passing out or going to sleep every other chapter.

Attack on Titan by Hajime Isayama: It’s not so much I don’t remember, it’s that I just don’t understand what is happening. For a while, I had to wait on the volumes to release in English before I could read, and there are months in between releases that I would forget what I just read. Now I read the chapters as they come out and then reread the volumes when they release so I can refresh my memory. From time to time, I go on the wikia page in order to figure out what the frick-frack is happening.

Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones: Okay, so here’s the deal with this one. I love Howl’s Moving Castle. The book, the Studio Ghibli film, everything. I love Howl and his moody self and Calcifer’s sass and Sophie’s Sophie-ness. I can pick out stuff from Howl’s Moving Castle a mile away. But! Actually remember what happened in the book? Ha ha ha… no. I don’t remember the overall arching conflict. (Yeah, yeah, Sophie turned into an old woman or whatever.) I don’t really know how the story is resolved. I need to reread it and rewatch ASAP.

The Young Elites by Marie Lu: After reading her Legend series, I was pumped to read anything Marie Lu wrote… except The Young Elites. I read the first book, no doubt, but I don’t remember anything that happened in it, and I’ve kind of been avoiding the rest of that series the past few years, pretending it doesn’t exist and I’m not missing out. I’ll just take Warcross and its upcoming sequel and run away, thank you very much.

The Last Battle by C.S. Lewis: This may come as a shock to everybody who knows me but I have a hard time remembering final book in The Chronicles of Narnia. Give me The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe or Voyage of the Dawn Treader or even The Silver Chair and I’m good. But there was always something about The Last Battle that made me avoid it. Maybe it was because it’s the last book in the series so I never got around to reading it multiple times like the others. Maybe it’s because it spends a lot of time talking about donkeys dressed as lions and other weird stuff I never understood. Maybe it’s because I didn’t want to say goodbye to Narnia. Either way, I think I need to reread it again.

There are so many books I’ve read that I don’t remember or I remember very little about. I’d say about half the books I read a year are easily forgotten if I don’t write down my reaction to them as I read or when I’ve finished them. But still, I will read.

What are some books you’ve forgotten? How do you remember books you’ve read? Don’t forget to join the link-up!



17 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Don’t Remember Reading (But I Did)

  1. I have a really tough time remembering things about books – even if I really loved them. I need to make more time to re-read things, especially the books I KNOW I loved. But ah well…I’ll just have the warm fuzzies for them without much of a recollection of actual happenings. lol


    Liked by 1 person

    • I feel the same. Even books I’ve loved are distant memories sometimes. I want to reread a lot of books too, but I also want to read new books. *sigh*


  2. I enjoyed The Last Battle because Peter and Edmund and Lucy returned. I enjoyed their stories the best, so I was happy to have them back.

    Insurgent, though… I remember that Tris turned from a kick-ass heroine into a whiny brat. I remember wanting to throw the book against the wall. And frankly, that’s all I wanted to remember. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • I know when I read The Last Battle, I enjoyed it for those same reasons–the return of beloved characters. And I remember the ending quite well, but the beginning and parts of the middle are a bit muddled in my memory.

      Ugh. Insurgent. I don’t… I don’t even want to discuss that book and how unnecessary it is. (I actually have a list compiled of everything wrong with Divergent and how it could be fixed and the biggest way is it should have been a duology.)


      • I have so many issues with the Divergent series. The biggest one for me, though, is how the author claims that the twist at the end of the series was planned all along, and yet she did nothing to set it up in the first two books.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Yeah, if that’s true, I don’t buy it. The twist wasn’t even that surprising because of how she randomly switched book three to dual POV. (It was kind of obvious to see what was coming, eh?) That is another item on my list of “problems” of this series: the dual POV AND the unnecessary “twist” at the ending. *sigh* The whole thing makes me a bit angry because there was so much potential.


      • Exactly! Especially when books 1 and 2 would have kinda benefited from a minor dual POV. To switch randomly in book 3 is not only jarring, but completely telegraphs her intent for the twist.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I’ve read several of these! Tuck, Everlasting is a sweet little book, though I can tell why it wasn’t overwhelmingly memorable. I remember finding Howl’s Moving Castle slightly lackluster — it was so hyped as a childhood classic, I wanted more out of it. I agree with you about Insurgent — I read the book and watched the movie, and I couldn’t tell you the most *basic* detail about the plot. Divergent was, if shakily written, still a really fun book, but it probably should’ve been a standalone. The rest of the trilogy just kind of fell apart, imo.

    My TTT

    Liked by 1 person

    • I agree about Divergent. I can see why people enjoyed it, but it either should have been a duology (taking out the unnecessary parts) or a single story.


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