It is strange (but true) that many great books just don’t get into the hands of readers. Whether it’s an unappealing cover / title or just poor marketing I feel sad for those little-known books that are really worth reading.
Here is a list (does anyone else get a spike of joy when compiling lists?) of books I loved but which have had very little attention on Goodreads even though it’s been a while since they were published. One thing these books all have in common, other than that I love them, is that they all have edgy, gritty characters (trust me this is a good thing!).
*All ratings are out of the possible 5 stars, subjective to the individual reviewer opinion published publicly on Goodreads and retrieved on 9 August 2016 .
These Books Deserve More Attention
Between Two Seas by Marie-Louise Jensen
317 Ratings, 4-star average
Set in Denmark this is a beautifully written historical fiction by a first-class author. It’s about a strong female character who journeys into the unknown to find her father. I have no idea why this book is not more popular. It’s a must read.
Dust by Sarah Daltry
37 ratings, 4.14- star average
An epic fantasy by an author whose writing is so seductive you’ll be sucked in from the first page. Full of twists the three main characters, a princess, assassin and a thief, will keep you on your toes throughout. Fantasy lovers add this to the top of your TBR. This is one of my rare 5-star reads,
The Agora Files by Adam Oster
18 ratings, 3.94- star average
The Agora Files is a fast-paced, unpredictable and original dystopian story. Full of action, adrenaline, excitement and adventure but with a strong, appealing human element which comes through in family dynamics and unexpected relationships.
Scarred by Joanne Macgregor
327 ratings, 3.86-star average
Written by a South African author this is a tender, sensitive contemporary story of hope and redemption but with strong, complex characters and witty banter.
Retaliation by Yasmin Shiraz
105 ratings, 4.24-star average
This is a powerful, brutal, raw but ultimately inspirational account of life on gang ruled streets. Although set in Washington D.C. the story will resonate with any inner city streets of all major cities across the world and as such has the potential of reaching many teens who desperately need to hear the message of hope.
Grass by Cathy MacPhail
87 ratings, 3.75-star average
Grass is a story that will stick with you long after you’ve finished reading. Cathy MacPhail is a well-known author and this is my favourite of her books. A witness to a horrific crime by a local gang is placed in a very difficult situation when he is forbidden to grass (tell on).
The Last Summer of Us by Maggie Harcourt
388 ratings, 3.64-star average
Drama follows three best friends, whose relationships intertwine with unexpected results, as they embark on a road trip.
One, Two, Three by Elodie Nowodazki
237 ratings, 3.61-star average
Passionate, gritty, complicated characters abound in this intense story which revolves around a ballerina’s future career after an accident and her bizarre family relationships
Street Duty, Case One: Knock Down by Chris Ould
60 ratings, 3.82-star average
Trainee student police officers encounter gritty, streetwise characters on their watch. Fast-paced action and realistic settings. A book not to miss.
The Goblet Club by S.A. Partridge
34 ratings, 3.75-star average
Set in a boy’s boarding school this is a gothic, sinister, award-winning book by a South African author. Reminiscent of Donna Tartt’s The Secret History with the formation of a secret exclusive club which in this case is dedicated to the study of poison. Dark themes and compelling characters make this a book not to miss.
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