Top 5 Wednesday: Most Misleading Synopses


All synopsis quotes are from Amazon

1. The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert


The Publisher’s Version

“…Alma (who inherits both her father’s money and his mind), ultimately becomes a botanist of considerable gifts herself. As Alma’s research takes her deeper into the mysteries of evolution, she falls in love with a man named Ambrose Pike who makes incomparable paintings of orchids and who draws her in the exact opposite direction—into the realm of the spiritual, the divine, and the magical. Alma is a clear-minded scientist; Ambrose a utopian artist—but what unites this unlikely couple is a desperate need to understand the workings of this world and the mechanisms behind all life.
Exquisitely researched and told at a galloping pace, The Signature of All Things soars across the globe….

My Version

Spinster botanist, finally marries a man who won’t have her. Spends an entire chapter masturbating in a library closet. Finally achieves her life’s ambition to perform oral sex on a man.

NOTE: I did finish this one.

2. Scarlett by Alexandra Ripley


Publisher’s Version

“Picks up the story begun in Margaret Mitchell”s classic “Gone With the Wind”. What happens to Ashley now that Melanie is gone? Does Scarlett find a way to get Rhett back?”

My Version

One of the worst books ever published. Utterly awful. Too bad for words. The t.v. version wasn’t even saved by having Timothy Dalton as Rhett or Joanne Whalley as Scarlett.. It was as embarrassing as the book.

Note: I read it all.

 3. Churchill and the King by  Kenneth Weisbrode


Publisher’s Version

“The political and personal relationship between King George VI and Winston Churchill during World War II is one that has been largely overlooked throughout history, yet the trust and loyalty these men shared helped Britain navigate its perhaps most trying time.
Despite their vast differences, the two men met weekly and found that their divergent virtues made them a powerful duo. The king’s shy nature was offset by Churchill’s willingness to cast himself as the nation’s savior. Meanwhile, Churchill’s complicated political past was given credibility by the king’s embrace and counsel. Together as foils, confidants, conspirators, and comrades, the duo guided Britain through war while reinspiring hope in the monarchy, Parliament, and the nation itself. Books about these men as individuals could fill a library, but Kenneth Weisbrode’s study of the unique bond between them is the first of its kind.”

My Version

Someone forgot to tell the author that the conversations between the King and his Prime Minster are confidential. They are not shared or recorded unless in a private diary. This made for a book that added nothing to what was already known about the relationship between George VI and Churchill.

4. Dinner With Edward by Isabel Vincent


Publisher’s Version

“As Edward and Isabel meet weekly for the glorious dinners that Edward prepares, he shares so much more than his recipes for apple galette or the perfect martini, or even his tips for deboning poultry. Edward is teaching Isabel the luxury of slowing down and taking the time to think through everything she does, to deconstruct her own life, cutting it back to the bone and examining the guts, no matter how messy that proves to be. Dinner with Edward is a book about love and nourishment, and about how dinner with a friend can, in the words of M. F. K. Fisher, “sustain us against the hungers of the world.”

My Version

I didn’t finish it. Either it is delightful or so pretentious I can’t take it. It has that Manhattan-superiority to it. Like only the cool people will really understand. Yet other parts nearly made me cry with the friendship and sweetness. I gave up.

5. You’ll Grow Out of It by Jessi Klein


Publisher’s Version

“As both a tomboy and a late bloomer, comedian Jessi Klein grew up feeling more like an outsider than a participant in the rites of modern femininity.In YOU’LL GROW OUT OF IT, Klein offers-through an incisive collection of real-life stories-a relentlessly funny yet poignant take on a variety of topics she has experienced along her strange journey to womanhood and beyond. These include her “transformation from Pippi Longstocking-esque tomboy to are-you-a-lesbian-or-what tom man,” attempting to find watchable porn, and identifying the difference between being called “ma’am” and “miss” (“Miss sounds like you weigh ninety-nine pounds”). Raw, relatable, and consistently hilarious, YOU’LL GROW OUT OF IT is a one-of-a-kind book by a singular and irresistible comic voice.”


My Version

As a heterosexual woman who adores men, but always gets to be “the friend” I had high hopes for this book. But the sea of hipster profanity left me wanting to run to a Bible Study. Honestly, how is saying Fuck-shit-cunt-pussy all the time “creative” let alone “funny?” The intro was the best part. I did get a few good laughs, such as how hard it is to get and maintain a tennis ball butt. The rest, not so much. Yes, it takes work to look like this, but Dolly Parton said that back in Steel Magnolias–its not news. There was so much promise in exploring how a tom boy can grow up and still be a happily heterosexual woman, wife and mom. But it was all about “me” [Jessi] her potty mouth and, naturally, how fab NYC is. There’s life outside of NYC people. Honestly.


Leave me a comment or a link to your post. I love to see all the great posts on Top 5 Wednesday. You can join the group on and participate each week, too!





6 thoughts on “Top 5 Wednesday: Most Misleading Synopses

Add yours

    1. I’m a librarian, so I read reviews–professional habit. A few of these were really whoppers! I agree with you–my personal reading tends to be heavily impacted by bloggers or reader reviews on Goodreads or Amazon more than professional reviews any more, but force of habit is strong. Thanks for stopping by!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Interesting! I remember often, when I read books to the kids, being struck by the disconnect between illustrations and words/stories. Did the illustrator not read the book? Or maybe it was just poor communication by an editor. Anyway. I’ve not read any of these and it sounds like I didn’t miss a lot. I didn’t know Gilbert had written fiction. She seems a bit of a mess by the latest I’ve read on her.

    Liked by 1 person

I enjoy reading your comments!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Create a free website or blog at

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: