Books on the Nightstand discussion

436 views
"Jaw dropping books"?

Comments Showing 1-50 of 52 (52 new)    post a comment »
« previous 1

message 1: by Maggie (new)

Maggie | 32 comments Some of the best books I have read are the ones that are so unpredictable that my jaw drops as I am reading it because I did not at all anticipate the event unfolding. The most recent book where this happened was Gone Girl. Any other recommendations for what I call "jaw dropping books"?


message 3: by Eric (new)

Eric | 1175 comments Mod
For me, jaw dropping books are books that do something new and unique with storytelling or language, rather than just the mechanisms of plot.

Pale Fire by Vladimir Nabokov Ulysses by James Joyce Gravity's Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski The Gold Bug Variations by Richard Powers Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell V. by Thomas Pynchon Watchmen by Alan Moore

Right now I'm reading Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace , which I hope will enter this select company.

If anyone has any more recommendations of books like these, let me know.


message 4: by Alex (new)

Alex Graham | 2 comments I just finished one last night that I would definitely consider to be "jaw dropping"! The People in the Trees


message 5: by Cindy (last edited Apr 30, 2014 04:18AM) (new)

Cindy (cwsmith) | 104 comments The Headmaster's Wife by Thomas Christopher Greene . The Headmaster's Wife.


message 6: by Tracey (new)

Tracey (tracemick) | 217 comments For me, when I think of jaw dropping books, the first book I think of is We Need to Talk About Kevin We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver by Lionel Shriver. That book stuck with me for many reasons. It's not an easy read but I remember that my jaw really did drop when I got to the end.


message 7: by Gerald (new)

Gerald Miller | 821 comments About the best jaw dropper of all time is THE EXORCIST(especially since I searched for the book cover and it was not there). I never thought the old man would die at the end.


message 8: by Maggie (new)

Maggie | 32 comments Thank you everyone for the great suggestions. I love adding to my "Books to Read" pile.


message 9: by Valerie (new)

Valerie Gentlemen and Players. Never saw that ending coming.


message 10: by Denise (new)

Denise (deniseg53) | 221 comments This is a great topic! I look forward to more suggestions. I need to give it more thought. I agree about Gone Girl. Defending Jacob also came to mind, but for a reason I'm not sure about, Stoner did, too.


message 11: by Adore (last edited May 01, 2014 01:10PM) (new)

Adore Denise wrote: but for a reason I'm not sure about, Stoner ..."

same here! at the very least, i found the writing jaw dropping even if the book isn't filled with lots of twists and turns.

i'd recommend:

The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox

i wasn't at all prepared for that ending!


message 12: by Amy (new)

Amy (amybf) | 144 comments Tracey wrote: "For me, when I think of jaw dropping books, the first book I think of is We Need to Talk About Kevin We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver by Lionel Shriver. That book stuck with me for man..."

I'm with you on this book, Tracey. Read it about 8 years ago and still think about it.


message 13: by Tina (new)

Tina (godmotherx5) | 92 comments In Cold Blood My books club chose In Cold Blood over two years ago & I'm still reeling.


message 14: by Linda (new)

Linda | 2802 comments Mod
Maggie wrote: "Thank you everyone for the great suggestions. I love adding to my "Books to Read" pile."

You know, Maggie, we are going to be anticipating your reviews.


message 15: by Maggie (new)

Maggie | 32 comments Linda- I am a much better reader than I am a writer! Also, with a 3 year old keeping me busy my newest challenge is finding time to read. I have to admit though since "finding" the BOTN podcast I am finishing books quicker than ever. So many good books and not enough time in the day to read!


message 16: by Linda (new)

Linda | 2802 comments Mod
Maggie wrote: "Linda- I am a much better reader than I am a writer! Also, with a 3 year old keeping me busy my newest challenge is finding time to read. I have to admit though since "finding" the BOTN podcast I a..."

Maggie, All you need to do is put stars on those you read. I'll be happy with that.


message 17: by Cata (new)

Cata (cata357) | 5 comments Cutting for Stone. The audio book is amazing!


message 18: by Louise (last edited May 02, 2014 01:39AM) (new)

Louise | 279 comments Hmm maybe these: Coraline by Neil Gaiman , Man in the Dark by Paul Auster , The Orange Girl by Jostein Gaarder , 14 by Peter Clines


message 19: by [deleted user] (last edited May 02, 2014 05:42AM) (new)

A Good American had a twist at the end that had me going back through the book to see if I missed any clues. It was completely jaw-dropping yet made sense. It is a wonderful book.


message 20: by Michael (new)

Michael (mkindness) | 537 comments Mod
This is a great topic Maggie... mind if we steal it for an upcoming episode?


message 21: by Sheila (new)

Sheila Sakraida (goldthreads) I have Stoner in my queue. I will have to make it my next book after reading this thread. I love surprise endings.


message 22: by Denise (new)

Denise (deniseg53) | 221 comments Sheila, I read Stoner based upon BOTN recommendations.


message 23: by Maggie (last edited May 02, 2014 05:51PM) (new)

Maggie | 32 comments Michael wrote: "This is a great topic Maggie... mind if we steal it for an upcoming episode?"

Michael - I would l love it if you would use this topic in a podcast. I am eager to hear what you and Ann would recommend as "jaw droppers.


message 24: by Maggie (new)

Maggie | 32 comments I went to the library today to look for some of the book recommendations listed in this discussion and imagine my disappointment and sadness when the Goodreads site was down! Thankfully I was able to find two other books on my handwritten list - A Gate at the Stairs by Lorrie Moore & The Circus of the Earth and the Air by Brooke Stevens.


message 25: by Denise (new)

Denise (denisemikula) | 22 comments We were all completely besides ourselves Corrine Fowler


message 26: by Denise (new)

Denise | 4 comments Trust Your Eyes by Lynwood Barklay


message 27: by Denise (new)

Denise | 4 comments Linwood Barclay (proper spelling)


message 28: by Karen (new)

Karen | 293 comments My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult Shocking ending!


message 29: by Michael (new)

Michael (mkindness) | 537 comments Mod
Linda wrote: "Await Your Reply by Dan Chaon Await Your Reply"

YES!


message 30: by Kathy (new)

Kathy I loved the writing style, characterizations, and background information of John Dunning's 1992 mystery Booked To Die. However, the author broke my heart because of his decision to...well, I won't go into it, but it came as a real shock and made me unable to enjoy the rest of the series.


message 31: by Karen (new)

Karen | 293 comments Michael wrote: "Linda wrote: "Await Your Reply by Dan Chaon Await Your Reply"

YES!"


How could I forget YES! YES!!


message 32: by Linda (new)

Linda | 2802 comments Mod
Kathy wrote: "I loved the writing style, characterizations, and background information of John Dunning's 1992 mystery Booked To Die. However, the author broke my heart because of his decision to......"

This is one of my favorite series, but he has not written a new one in a few years.


message 33: by Marion (new)

Marion Hill (kammbia1) I have 2 jaw-dropping books for this post.

1) The Sparrow (The Sparrow, #1) by Mary Doria Russell by Mary Doria Russell is one of the best novels I've read recently.

Here's my review: http://kammbia1.wordpress.com/2013/01...

2) Lost Mission A Novel by Athol Dickson by Athol Dickson is an excellent novel by underrated author.

Here's my review:

http://kammbia1.wordpress.com/2011/06...

Marion


message 34: by Ann (new)

Ann (akingman) | 2097 comments Mod
So we turned this thread (sort of) into an episode, complete with poll:

http://booksonthenightstand.com/2014/...


message 35: by Mamie (last edited May 14, 2014 09:04AM) (new)

Mamie Anthoine Ney (aublibdir) | 5 comments I have to second Gentlemen and Players


message 36: by Janet (new)

Janet (justjanet) | 790 comments A Prayer for Owen Meany I am listening to the audio, which is quite good and without spoiling I can say that they take draft dodging to highly creative heights.


message 37: by Jana (last edited May 19, 2014 12:21PM) (new)

Jana (jazziegirl2010) | 309 comments Tracey wrote: "For me, when I think of jaw dropping books, the first book I think of is We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver. That book stuck with me for man..."

Definitely a jaw dropper! We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver


message 38: by Dree (last edited May 19, 2014 12:54PM) (new)

Dree Jaw-droppers tend to get 5 stars from me :) They also tend to make it hard for me to start my next book, as I have to process what I finished. But that doesn't mean they are all about a twist at the end--often they just leave me shaking my head throughout. I fully agree about Gone Girl.

The Handmaid's Tale
The Intuitionist
The City and the City
The Lifeboat
The Barbarian Nurseries

And from when I was a kid, these two books had the wow factor that only encouraged me to read more than I already did:

The Westing Game (elementary school)
And Then There Were None (junior high)
And of course Shirley Jackson's short story The Lottery (high school)


message 39: by Jana (new)

Jana (jazziegirl2010) | 309 comments Dree, I love that you mentioned The City and The City. Totally agree on that one! And A Handmaid's Tale.


message 40: by Jan (new)

Jan | 100 comments I'm eager to see the results of the survey on this topic. Any ideas when that will be ready?


message 41: by Chris (new)

Chris | 180 comments I have to say "Defending Jacob" may be one of the only books where my mouth dropped. Usually I can see things coming, not in this case. I want friends to read it, but I can't talk about it because I'll ruin it! :-)


message 42: by Sarah (new)

Sarah | 32 comments I get what people are saying about knowing a book is jaw dropping sets you up for disappointment if you didn't feel that way. That being said, I like how sometimes Michael will say a book leaves you wanting to talk to someone about it. To me, that means that it was "jaw dropping" with out really saying so.


message 43: by Kalen (new)

Kalen | 218 comments Astonish Me just got me. Anyone else see *that* coming? I should have but I didn't. (Trying to avoid a spoiler.....)


message 44: by Ann (new)

Ann (akingman) | 2097 comments Mod
I did see it coming but loved the book anyway!


message 45: by Janet (new)

Janet (justjanet) | 790 comments I thought Astonish Me was predictable except for the bit about Chloe but I too loved it!


message 46: by Kalen (new)

Kalen | 218 comments I wonder why it wasn't to me. It should have been. I usually sniff things out pretty fast. Maybe I just wanted to get lost in it and not over-think this one?


message 47: by Deb (new)

Deb | 38 comments Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer - all the more jaw-dropping because a true story of men and women on Everest!


message 48: by Deb (new)

Deb | 38 comments Tina wrote: "In Cold Blood My books club chose In Cold Blood over two years ago & I'm still reeling."

Omigosh yes!


message 49: by Jillian (new)

Jillian | 42 comments The Dinner Great book with a great ending!


message 50: by Amy (new)

Amy | 463 comments Deb wrote: "Tina wrote: "In Cold Blood My books club chose In Cold Blood over two years ago & I'm still reeling."

Omigosh yes!"


Yup me too. That one really gets me for some reason. Probably because it is a true story!


« previous 1
back to top