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Guest Blogger: Selena Blake

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Great Expectations

A few weeks ago I was in line at my favorite biscuit shop waiting for my order. If you like biscuits, imagine the most perfect, mouthwatering, golden biscuit loaded with butter. Hey… I exercised that day! I think.

These biscuits honestly do make my mouth water and like all truly yummy things, my anticipation–my expectations were high.

Someone messed up the recipe that morning.

Who knows what they did but my biscuit just wasn’t right. Too dry. Not enough butter. And it tasted like they’d mistaken baking soda for flour.

Yeah. It was bad. And I had a major sad going on for the rest of the day. I told you about the built up anticipation, right? The high expectations?

It sucks to be let down. There, I’ve said it. It’s true! I hate expecting one thing and getting something completely unexpected.

With books, we run the risk of Great Expectations, Great Letdowns every time we crack open the pages (er…turn on the ereader.) Even with authors we know and love there’s that potential for disappointment. An author could deviate from her standard genre or style. Perhaps the book just didn’t come together as well as everyone (the author, publisher, and reader included) had hoped it would.

I admit that after a few let downs it can be hard to want to shell out money on another book that I may not like. But there’s always the lure that the next book for my keeper shelf could be waiting for me to buy it.

I was talking my friend Pam about books and reviews and she mentioned a writer friend of hers who’d gotten a 2 star book review from a really popular review magazine. In Pam’s mind the reviewer didn’t get her friend’s writing. And the genre might have had something to do with it too.

I suggested that the reviewer didn’t get what she was expecting. So often these expectations are set well before we start reading. There’s that anticipation of a great read simply because we’re (okay, I’m) hopeful we’ll love it. We might love the title or the author or perhaps we’re a fan of the publisher or imprint. Or maybe it’s book number 5 in a series and the first four books were holy-cow-I’ve-got-to-tell-everyone-I-know awesome. Or maybe we were expecting a romantic suspense and got a suspense with romantic elements.

Often times if my expectations aren’t met, it’s hard for me to look past what could be a perfectly good book or movie and regard it based on what it is versus what I thought it was.

Do you have any examples of having Great Expectations only to have a Great Letdown?

Selena Blake writes erotic paranormal and contemporary romance. First published in 2008, her series Stormy Weather has been on the best seller lists and nominated for awards. She’s a fan of action movies, Diet Coke, Milky Way bars and thunderstorms, not necessarily in that order. Learn more about her online at or catch her at facebook:




Thanks for stopping by Selena!