Top Ten Tuesday: Hidden Gems


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.

I’m pretty excited for this week’s list.  Mostly so I can check out lists other than my own (leave me a link below).  To define what we are considering a hidden gem here: it is books with less than 2,000 ratings on GoodReads.  These books are in no particular order.


The Black God’s Drums by P. Djeli Clark – This one is newer.  I think it released in November of last year so having less than 2,000 ratings is not too surprising.  It’s quick, so it’s not a big time commitment and throughly excellent.  You can find my review here.


Bannerless by Carrie Vaughn – This is has been around for over a year, so I’m a little baffled as to why it doesn’t have more than 2,000 ratings.  I suspect it has something to do with the blurb, which makes it sound highly derivative of The Handmaid’s Tale, but I promise it’s not.  Reading this felt cozy and quaint, and best of all it made me think. My review is here.


The Will to Battle by Ada Palmer – I am less surprised that this has less than 2,000 ratings.  A lot of my book buddies DNF’d the first book.  Those that continued on were satisfied with the conclusion given in Seven Surrenders, and hesitant to start The Will to Battle before Perhaps the Stars was released.  I can say that The Will to Battle does not end in a massive cliffhanger like Too Like The Lightning, but hope more readers will pick it up when book four is released.  Review can be found here.


The Moon and the Other by John Kessel – It actually hurts me that this only has 500 ratings on GoodReads because it’s absolutely phenomenal and I think a fairly wide audience could appreciate it.  It was one of my favorite reads last year and you can find my review here.


Null States by Malka Ann Older – This has only about 700 ratings on GoodReads.  It’s a sequel, so a little less surprising than maybe Bannerless, but still so good!  The first book, Infomocracy was also fantastic so I was surprised more readers didn’t continue on to book two.  The review can be found here.


Markswoman by Rati Mehrotra – It’s YA, it’s own voices, and it’s about a sisterhood of female assassins.  Everything about this should have been a home run so I’m honestly shocked it only has 1,100 ratings.  I’m blaming the publishers not giving it enough publicity because it’s a great book.  My review for this one is on GoodReads here.


Wolf Moon by Ian McDonald – I recommend this series to literally anyone who will listen.  It’s inclusive.  It’s fast paced.  The scenery is dazzling.  The world building feels fresh and new and it’s set on the moon.  This review is still hanging out on GoodReads here.  (Also- book three releases in March and I’ve already got a buddy read scheduled for it.  I can’t wait!)


The Wrong Stars by Tim Pratt – This one I feel like is also a victim of just not being publicized enough.  It’s set in space.  Has a really cool alien race called Liars (guess what they do?).  A rag tag band of salvagers (read: space pirates), a sweet LGBTQ romance, and a few scenes that give off the ‘creepy dread’ feeling as I like to call it.  I thought the sequel was releasing this spring, but in my fact checking it appears to already be released.  I will definitely check it out.  Review can be found on GoodReads here.

The Philosopher Kings and Necessity by Jo Walton – I adore this series.  I love the Greek mythological elements. I love the blend of science fiction and fantasy. I love the musings of a city full of philosophers and the characters.  TPK only has 1,700 ratings and Necessity has only 1,000 on GoodReads and it should have many more!  Reviews can be found here and here.


14 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Hidden Gems

    • I’m equally surprised Markswoman only had 1,100 ratings. The sequel is coming out soon (which I do want to read) and I hope more people will pick up the first book too. And thank you for the tip about linking to GoodReads!

      Liked by 1 person

    • I hope you get a chance to read them all! The two Jo Walton’s are part of a series that starts with The Just City and it’s one of my favorite books.


  1. I still need to read the black gods drum, it sounds great but haven’t got to it yet. But I did read the wrong stars and loved that!
    (what was the Ownvoices rep in markswoman?)

    Liked by 1 person

    • I adored The Wrong Stars too :). I remember I read it at a time where I needed something not too heavy and it fulfilled that need perfectly. The Black God’s Drums is great and you should pick it up- not least of all because it’s quick and you could probably read it in one sitting!

      Markswoman I thought qualified as own voices because the author was born and raised in India and the fantasy was clearly Hindu inspired- but maybe I’m mistaken as to what own-voices is?

      Liked by 1 person

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