Let’s Talk About the Worst

Valentine’s Day is tomorrow, and no doubt you have worked up warm and squishy feelings over the people or food products you most love. I think you need some balance. Talk to me about those books you wish you hadn’t read or those that were so bad you couldn’t finish them.

The discussion has already started. Sherry doesn’t give us the name of the “bodice-ripper” she couldn’t get through, though she may not remember it. Mark points out several titles which despite the strong writing may be difficult for many readers to finish. One book I reviewed favorably last year drew harsh criticism from my sister and a few others for stilted dialogue and otherwise boring writing.

I still don’t think I read many books for good reasons. I slog through many books in order to review them later. I also read slowly, so when I say “many books” it’s probably just a few compared to you. I probably should read careless for a year, giving a book 50 pages to interest me and feeling no guilt for dropping it.

But what about you? Can you name any books you disliked?

9 thoughts on “Let’s Talk About the Worst”

  1. I did NOT like Cold Mountain which I read on the recommendation of a friend. Too depressing. Creepy in parts. Bummer of an ending. I also couldn’t stand the author’s lack of quotation marks. It left me unable to “hear” the characters’ dialogue and hurt my brain. T’was as if they were using telepathy the whole time.

  2. I just mentioned Thomas Harris’ HANNIBAL the other day. I also vowed never to read another Micky Spillane after I, THE JURY. I’m no feminist (as you all know), but I sensed an attitude toward women in that book that filled me with an avid lack of curiosity to learn what more the author had to say.

  3. I am almost to the end of “Wuthering Heights”.

    I hate it. I want them ALL to die horrible deaths. I’ve yet to find one redeeming quality to this loathsome book.

    But I am determined to finish it.

    I’ll get therapy later.

  4. I remember liking what I read of Wuthering Heights, and it’s ends well too. There’s something to look forward to. They are hateful people though. I wish I remembered what I liked about it. Probably the same thing I liked about Great Expectations, another book I stopped reading in the middle.

  5. My personal quest is to one day read through the entirety of Gravity’s Rainbow. I’ve attempted said quest more times than I have fingers. So far, I’ve made it as far as page 56 before the sheer perversity of the prose casts me away.

    Indeed, these are the words that try men’s souls.

  6. The entire “Left Behind” series – I read (very quickly) out of curiosity, but did not enjoy the writing, the plot, the theology, …

  7. The entire “Left Behind” series – I read (very quickly) out of curiosity, but did not enjoy the writing, the plot, the theology, …

  8. I found Wuthering Heights interesting, but am appalled by all the women who find it (say it in a gushy way) romantic. Like thinking that Heathcliff and (what was her name?) Catherine are “great lovers”. Their whole relationship is twisted – and they are both remarkably devoid of redeeming qualities.

    What is it with women anyway?!

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