Worst Book and Why?

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Worst Book and Why?

Post  Hushy on Tue May 19, 2009 6:13 pm

What is the worst book you've ever read and why was it so crap?

Did you give up after a few chapters or did you give it another go at a later date, before finally consigning it to the floor in a fit of outrage?

Are there any particular writers you can't be bothered with? Why so?

Have you ever been badly dissapointed by one book of a series you were enjoying? If so, which and why?

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Re: Worst Book and Why?

Post  sunset30 on Tue May 19, 2009 6:20 pm

Jane Austen

SOMEONE should have told her NEVER to wrote ANYTHING, as she is so extremely DULL!

I read persausion for a level and thought it was incredibly dreary. In the whole book, essentially all that happens is that someone falls and hits their head, and someone else gets married. I was supposed to appreciate that she wrote what she knew, but, apparently that was absolutely NOTHING!

Pride and Prejudice (which I ALSO had to read for a level) was marginally better, but only because I was shown how to care about teh intricacies of the charcters - even then, they were few and far between, and quite frankly, the world would be no worse off if she had never bothered!

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Re: Worst Book and Why?

Post  Cadiva on Tue May 19, 2009 6:47 pm

Hehe controversial there Sunset Smile I would say, if you had to study Austen at A level, that you go back and read her again without all the ballache that goes with having to analyze a novel and you might enjoy them now. Pride and Prejudice is one of my favourite novels, but having to study it at O level, almost killed it for me.

My worst book would be (jointly) Angels and Demons and The De Vinci Code by Dan Brown. Both hideously written, ridiculously over inflated by the media into some sort of hysterical frenzy about a perceived hidden secret which is, I think, absolutely the only reason the books sold because if it was down to their actual content and writing, they'd have failed miserably. The basic premise of each story is farcical, the plot is none existant and he manages to break at least two laws of physics that I can think of which his escape from the helicopter in A&D!
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Re: Worst Book and Why?

Post  Moomin76 on Tue May 19, 2009 10:05 pm

sunset30 wrote:Jane Austen

SOMEONE should have told her NEVER to wrote ANYTHING, as she is so extremely DULL!
I may never talk to you again now! I LOVE Austen. Emma is of course my favourite.

I rarely give up on books. They have to be truly dreadful for me to stop. The most recent was a Lionel Shriver - The Post Birthday World. Awful awful awful. Pretentious boring rubbish.
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Re: Worst Book and Why?

Post  sarabone on Wed May 20, 2009 2:42 pm

Most likely the Da Vinci Code. Though The tunnel by William something or other is a close contender. The Da vinci code i've already explained in the dan brown thread. The tunnel is like being stuck in a bar being talekd to by a lecherous aging BNP member as he tells you the intimate details of his sex life and about why the nazis had the right idea in world war 2 for 800 goddamn pages. And no i didn't put it down. Some sadist tutor set it as a text for a first year unit and set the coursework on it so i had to read it.

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Re: Worst Book and Why?

Post  Jeliwobble on Wed May 20, 2009 4:24 pm

OK, watch me get shot down in flames.

I HATED To Kill a Mockingbird. I thought it was the dullest book I ever read and it was what convinced me not to do English A level as I realised I would have to read books I didn't particularly like.

I have also tried to read The Lord of the Rings because I was into fantasy. I think it's now been 12 separate occasions. I've watched the films and enjoyed them. I just can't read Tolkein's dense and intense drivel. I had the same problem with The Hobbit, for years, though I managed to wade my way through that when I was commuting for work.

David Eddings bores me to tears. As does Philip Pulman. I forced myself to read the His Dark Materials trilogy. First one was alright but the last two were dire. Just turned into a ranty treatise on why religion is so bad. Whatever, Philip.

I also tried to read, on the recommendation of my Chemistry teacher, the Thomas Covenant novels, but I just couldn't get over how unlovable the eponymous character was.

I have never tried to read any Dan Brown novel as I've heard just how crappy his writing is and don't think I'd enjoy it. I was also really disappointed with Stephenie Meyer's writing as well. I just do NOT get the hype over Twilight at all. There are much better writers doing much better vamp novels out there (Kim Harrison, Charlaine Harris and Carrie Vaughn being three).

Mostly, though, I enjoy what I read and I read A LOT. I tend to steer away from the 'classics' though. I read Sense and Sensibility for pleasure when I was about 16 and decided that, although I appreciated it, unless I HAD to read Austen, Dickens et al, I wouldn't bother again (I've read Oliver Twist and A Christmas Carol as well). Another reason I didn't do English A Level! I think I would enjoy them more now I'm 'grown up'. I have to say that I mooched Dune the other month, a SciFi classic, because I thought I ought to read it. It's still on my shelf though!

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Re: Worst Book and Why?

Post  sarabone on Wed May 20, 2009 4:33 pm

Wow... my english a level hardly made me read any canon literature. I had to read a bit of thomas hardy, some shakespeare and some war literautre but that was about as bad as it got. Ian McEwan was the first thing we studied. Little did I know at the time how sick i would be with the sound of his name by the time i left uni (He was one of the first graduates of my uni's creative writing masters. They go on about it. A lot.) I agree with you on lotr. And I'm normally a fairly big fantasy fan. It just doesn't read well, I think possibly it's to do with the fact that Tolkien was more interested in linguistics than literature, it's just doesn't feel especially literary...it doesn't have enough fluidity to the style.

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Re: Worst Book and Why?

Post  phoenix on Wed May 20, 2009 6:36 pm

{Gasp} I love Jane Austen!

I couldn't read "A Post Birthday World" either, and have consigned "We Have to Talk About Kevin" to a "meh, when I run out of books" pile. I don't get on with Shriver at all, far too pretentious a writer.

However my all time most disappointing novel(/s).. Lord of the Rings. Dear God. I can't even read the first one, far too much drivel to wade through. I still have them all and one day I might pick them up again. I keep meaning to watch the films first to see if they inspire me to read the books. I adore fantasy fiction, they really should be right up my street but I just can't, they bore me rigid.

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Re: Worst Book and Why?

Post  sarabone on Wed May 20, 2009 8:21 pm

The film inspired me to read the book and I still couldn't get through it. I think it's one of those times when the story is better than the book.

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Re: Worst Book and Why?

Post  Cadiva on Thu May 21, 2009 6:35 pm

Jeliwobble wrote:David Eddings bores me to tears.

Ooh no, the Belgariad and the Mallorian were both pretty good, but it started slipping when he pretty much used the same story in a slightly different format for the Elenium and subsequent books though.


I'll hold my hand up for another one who hasn't read LotR properly even though I am a massive fantasty fan and Tolkien's Silmarillion is one of my favourite books. I found trying to read LotR was like trying to read a history book or The Bible's Genesis where there's just page after page of explanatory note and no actual story.

I think you should try the films though Phoenix, Peter Jackson and his writing team did a fabulous job in distilling the books into a cohesive story. I did, though, find it easier to read LotR as three separate books rather than the huge big tome. I've managed to do Fellowship of the Ring and The Two Towers but haven't finished Return of the King yet.
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Re: Worst Book and Why?

Post  Moomin76 on Thu May 21, 2009 8:39 pm

I'm really shocked at those of you who've said you don't like LOTR! You are exactly the sort of people I thought would love it. I have only read it the once, but absolutely loved it. The films are amazing (although I prefer the extended versions over the cinema versions).

I hated Pullman's Dark Materials trilogy as well J. Didn't think the film was up to much either.
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Re: Worst Book and Why?

Post  aloveofeachcolour on Thu May 21, 2009 10:10 pm

*Running away to hide my face in shame* - Love LOTR & The Hobbit, enjoyed all 4 Dan Brown's books, never read Jane Austen, just finished Twilight having not been able to put it down.

I must be easily pleased, if I read all your posts.

*Bimbles off to find a nice, safe Terry Pratchett that will be approved of*

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Re: Worst Book and Why?

Post  aloveofeachcolour on Thu May 21, 2009 10:11 pm

Oh, and to answer the question in the OP, never could get on with the Silmarillion. Although I was a lot younger, so maybe I could try again now.

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Re: Worst Book and Why?

Post  sunset30 on Fri May 22, 2009 1:13 am

Have never read LOTR - tried the hobbit and couldn't read it (well, ykwim!)
LOVED his dark Materials and also went on to read the broken bridge by pullman too!
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Re: Worst Book and Why?

Post  dirtyqwerty on Wed May 27, 2009 11:34 pm

Gandalf's annoying isn't he? All that "It is as I foresaw!" cods. Feel like giving his beardy face a slap. ("so WHY (slap) didn't you SAY (slap) so BEFORE??? (slap)"

Worst book? Anything by Freya North. *Rolls eyes HUGELY at the rubbishness of FN and her ilk and her fans*

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Re: Worst Book and Why?

Post  Henri on Thu May 28, 2009 11:41 am

I don't tend to remember books I find rubbish. I'm one of those people who in my younger days could easily read three books a week, every week. If it was crap I'd immediately forget about it and move on to the next book.

However, LOTR stands out in my mind as particularly awful. I tried to force my way through it and just hated every second of it. I made it to the end of LOTR but gave up about two chapters into the second book.

Also, Fight Club. It was M's favourite book so I tried to read it but I wanted to stab my eyes out with cocktail stick after about 10 pages.

I love 'bad' books. I read awful pulpy crappy books just because I love reading. Something like Stephenie Meyer's stuff is brilliant for me because I can finish the longer books in two days. It stops my mind rotting but doesn't make me THINK. I also loved the Da Vinci Code and Phillip Pullmans HDM for this reason. It's the equivalent to me of putting on some rubbish tv or a cheesy film. I stick my nose in, turn my brain off, and enjoy the pictures.
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Re: Worst Book and Why?

Post  fatcat2 on Thu May 28, 2009 11:52 am

I had to read Rebecca for a book club once, I hated all of it but finished it, I found it so boring.
Books have to intrigue me by the first chapter or I tend to not persevere
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Re: Worst Book and Why?

Post  sunset30 on Thu May 28, 2009 12:31 pm

Daphne Du Maurier ALSO not for me
I WAS going to include Brontes too - but actually, I got the point of Wuthering Heights, and it was hard going, but bearable. The Spike Milligan version was a big improvement!
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Re: Worst Book and Why?

Post  Henri on Thu May 28, 2009 1:52 pm

I fricking love Wuthering Heights. I did it at a-level for English Lang&Lit and found it a bit hard going (as you find any books you are made to read and don't read just for pleasure) but in second year for Theatre Studies we did a shortened version of Bronte and I played Cathy and Bertha, and I went back and re-read WH as research and found I absolutely loved it. I've read it a couple of times since and I still love it.
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