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Books you've left unfinished.

Discussion in 'CycleChat Cafe' started by Andy in Sig, 6 Apr 2008.

  1. Andy in Sig

    Andy in Sig Vice President in Exile

    Further to the walked out on films thread, it occurs to me that very occasionally I think a book is so crap that I don't stick it out to the end.

    The most obvious example for me was the Thomas Covenant rubbish. I managed two and a half books of the first trilogy and thought "Why am I persisting with this turgid ill written crap" and consigned it with pleasure to the dustbin.

    Having enjoyed Le Carre's Smiley novels, I suffered all the way through the over stylised Little Drummer Girl, didn't heed the warning and only got half way through the next one.
     
  2. longers

    longers Veteran

    The Handmaids Tale - Margaret Atwood. Far too depressing for me to be enjoyable.

    The Bible. I tried but gave up on that one too.
     
  3. simon l& and a half

    simon l& and a half New Member

    Location:
    Streatham Hill
    Being Dead, by Jim Crace. It's just too appalling, in the sense that the story is so exquisitely painful to read. I'm a Crace fan, and this might be his best book, but it's not for the faint-hearted.
     
  4. simon l& and a half

    simon l& and a half New Member

    Location:
    Streatham Hill
    The Tin Drum. I really wanted to enjoy this and failed. Just too intricate and dense. And given that I lapped up Finnegan's Wake that's quite something.
     
  5. Mort

    Mort Interstellar Overalls

    I got stuck on a flight back from Bangkok to Hamburg with the inflight movie system broken down and the only choice of reading was my colleague's copy of "the Da Vinci Code". After struggling for half and hour it became clear I would be better entertained by staring vacantly into the back of the seat in front of me for eight hours or self harming with a plastic fork.
     
  6. Dayvo

    Dayvo Just passin' through

    Location:
    O' slO'
    Read all but the last 50 pages of 'The World According to Garp' by John Irving. Bloody purgary.

    I've read all of Herman Hesse's books and thoroughly enjoyed them, except for 'The Glass Bead Game'! I've tried many times, but I just can't get into it; it's far too intelligent for me!

    'A Brief History of Time' by Stephen Hawking. Not a chance!

    'Lord Jim' by Jospeh Conrad; he goes into so much detail, even about the most mundane of activities.

    'Middlemarch' by George Elliot. There was a one in six chance of it coming up in English A-level. I didn't bother/couldn't read it; and it came up!
     
  7. Foghat

    Foghat Veteran

    The Mitrokhin Archive has been on hold for about five years.

    A highly detailed but dry history of KGB shenanigans and international espionage, written by a defecting KGB official. Potentially a fascinating subject, but in this instance not a great deal more than an endless list of names, codenames, codewords and dates; not very engagingly written and quite heavy going unless one specialises in this area.
     
  8. Dice Man by Luke Rhinehart.
    A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth

    No particular reason - I just couldn't 'get a grip' of them :sad:

    Captain Corelli's Mandolin by Louis de Bernieres, Longitude by Dava Sobel - all passed under my reading radar...
     
  9. Flying_Monkey

    Flying_Monkey Toll Collector on the Road to Nowhere

    I try never to give up on a book once I've started. Just once I gave up on something because it was just dull - an sf novel by Linda Nagata, called Vast. If you haven't heard of it, don't bother...
     
  10. Chuffy

    Chuffy Veteran

    I rarely have the patience to finish a book that I dislike. I wasted enough of my life being forced to read appalling bilge (Austen, Hardy, Eliot, the Brontes et al) that I'd rather bail out than grind on with some turgid old cobblers. The most recent example was one of the Harry Potter books. Thought I'd give them a try, just in case I was wrong about them. Nope. 20 pages of the most poorly written crap later I gave up. Having said that, I finished the Da Vinci Code and that was pretty damn bad.
     
  11. Abitrary

    Abitrary New Member

    Same here! Except only made it through a chapter of little drummer girl.

    The worst is when someone lends you something and says 'you've got to read this...' whilst slobbering, as someone did with The Hippopotamus by Stephen Fry. I've never seen such a chasm between different facets of someones talent, and lasted about 2 chapters.
     
  12. marinyork

    marinyork Resting in suspended Animation

    Location:
    Logopolis
    The Da Vinci Code. It was supposed to be a page turner even if not well written, it wasn't even that for me.
     
  13. Chuffy

    Chuffy Veteran

    The problem is that I knew a lot of the stuff that he nicked it was based on, so it was fun spotting references and seeing how he crowbarred everything in. The writing was dreadful though.
     
  14. bobg

    bobg Über Member

    Location:
    Crosby Merseyside
    :sad::biggrin::biggrin::biggrin: I had to call Mrs BG into to see that, you just listed all of her favourite authors except Zola ... did you forget that one???
     
  15. Odyssey

    Odyssey New Member

    War of the Worlds.

    I generally find that it has to be an exceptionally good book to keep me reading until the end.