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Hidden Gems


Everybody knows that some books are fabulous. Harry Potter, of course….

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter, #7)
4.62
 2,034,263 

Over 2,000,000 people have read Harry Potter #7 on Goodreads, with an average rating of 4.62. That’s amazing.

There’s also Game of Thrones…

A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, #1)
4.45
1,627,467

Over 1,500,000 million people have read Game of Thrones on Goodreads, with an average rating of 4.45.

I’m happy so many people have read and loved Harry and Game. But I’ve read some unbelievably good books that have been overlooked. Let me share some of my favorites….

Two Wallace Stegner books, Crossing to Safety and Angle of Repose, both rated higher than 4.10, but neither has more than 50,000 readers.

Crossing to Safety
4.16
31,293
Angle of Repose
4.27
45,462
An amazing MG book, Ghost, by Jason Reynolds is rated 4.22, but has only been read by a little more than 10,000 readers. 

Ghost (Track, #1)
4.22
11,504
I can’t believe that less than 1500 people have read the complex and intriguing Gold Bug Variations.

The Gold Bug Variations
4.11
1,471
Ellen Gilchrist is a sadly neglected author. Two of my favorite books of hers have less than 1,000 readers each.

In the Land of Dreamy Dreams
4.25
965
Rhoda: A Life in Stories
4.22
652
Is there any writer who captures families better than Richard Yates? Yet Easter Parade only has 6500 readers?

The Easter Parade
4.03
6,542

George Saunders is an innovative adult book author. But he has a children’s book that you should not miss. 

The Very Persistent Gappers of Frip
4.11
2,764

Thi Bui has written a poignant illustrated memoir that was a 2017 National Book Critics Circle (NBCC) Finalist, an ABA Indies Introduce Winter / Spring 2017 Selection, a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Spring 2017 Selection, and anALA 2018 Notable Books Selection. Why, then, have less than 10,000 people read it at Goodreads?


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The Best We Could Do
4.37
8,037
Why is J.L. Carr’s novel, A Month in the Country, finding less than 6,000 readers? 
A Month in the Country
4.10
5,692

Over the years, I’ve met many people who read and loved Mrs. Mike. Why don’t more people know about it?

Mrs. Mike (Mrs. Mike, #1)
4.14
15,572

Over 200,000 people have read Pearl Buck’s Good Earth on Goodreads, but what about…

Pavilion of Women: A Novel of Life in the Women's Quarters
4.12
10,474

Pavilion of Women by Pearl Buck is rated 4.12, higher than Good Earth.

You’ve read In Cold Blood by Truman Capote, but what about The Grass Harp? Capote is a masterful writer of fiction, too.

In Iceland, everyone knows the name Halldor Laxness, but not so many people outside his homeland.
Independent People
4.18
7,207

People raved to me about True Grit for years, but it was only within the last five years that I finally broke down and read it. Now I number among the TG ravers.

True Grit
4.14
31,734

Almost 1,500,000 people have read The Book Thief, but what about this one by the same author?

Over 200,000 people have read The Things They Carried. If you loved TTTC, I bet you will love The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan.

The Narrow Road to the Deep North
4.01
39,717

I ran across The Radium Girls at a library conference. It’s a powerful true story.

The Radium Girls: The Dark Story of America's Shining Women
4.22
26,275

Now this is just sad. The Touchstone Anthology of Contemporary Creative Nonfiction is a collection of brilliant pieces of creative nonfiction. No one who considers herself a writer should miss reading this book.

Touchstone Anthology of Contemporary Creative Nonfiction: Work from 1970 to the Present
4.13
483

I don’t read scary and Robert McCammon is a name I associate with scary. Boy’s Life is not scary; it is an excellent novel. It is ridiculous that only a little over 20,000 people have read this book at Goodreads.
Boy's Life
4.34
20,879

Maira Kalman. How I adore Maira Kalman. Look at her numbers, though. You all really need to get her books and read her today.

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And the Pursuit of Happiness
4.29
3,291
The Principles of Uncertainty
4.03
8,138

Mrs. Bridge is a contemporary classic. How is it that so few people have read it?

Mrs. Bridge
4.05
3,437

I was completely fascinated with this collection of letters. Others are taken with it, too, with an average rating of 4.35, but why so few people?

Letters of Note: An Eclectic Collection of Correspondence Deserving of a Wider Audience
4.35
3,628
If you love historical fiction, you must seek out this book by French author Zoe Oldenbourg. Trust me on this. It is a travesty that less than two hundred people have found this masterpiece.

There has never been a better book written that deals with themes of the conflict of spirituality and creativity than My Name is Asher Lev.
My Name Is Asher Lev
4.19
32,491

One can only hope that many, many more people are reading this collection of Italian folktales in the original Italian.

Italian Folktales
4.19
3,194

I just discovered this wonderful book by Mark Helprin, and it was only published last year. There’s still time for its number to go up.

Paris in the Present Tense
4.11
1,689
I read anything—stories for adults, stories for children—by Amy Krouse Rosenthal, who, sadly, passed away last year. This book is pure fun.

Textbook Amy Krouse Rosenthal
4.24
2,156
I’m not a sports reader, as a general rule, but this book tugged at my heart.

The Last Shot: City Streets, Basketball Dreams
4.16
4,835

Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand has over half a million ratings on Goodreads. Here are a few more nonfiction books that are deserving of more readers:

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Complications: A Surgeon's Notes on an Imperfect Science
4.25
31,160
The Nine: Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court
4.07
14,524
Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania
4.08
83,791
We Wish to Inform You That Tomorrow We Will Be Killed with Our Families
4.26
22,986
In the Kingdom of Ice: The Grand and Terrible Polar Voyage of the USS Jeannette
4.19
15,173
Into That Good Night
4.24
41

Have you read any of these? What hidden gems do you know about? Share your favorites with me.

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. Each Tuesday That Artsy Reader Girl assigns a topic and then post her top ten list that fits that topic. You’re more than welcome to join her and create your own top ten (or 2, 5, 20, etc.) list as well. Feel free to put a unique spin on the topic to make it work for you! Please link back to That Artsy Reader Girl in your own post so that others know where to find more information.




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