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Books that you feel you should have liked but didn't.

Discussion in 'Book club' started by nick909, Nov 5, 2015.

  1. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    By which I mean books that are either critically acclaimed, acknowledged classics or bestsellers.

    Three to start with:

    Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro

    Widely acclaimed to be a work of beauty. Won the Man Booker. Hated it. Bored me senseless. I began to dread bedtime as I'd have to try yet again to become even remotely interested in the protagonist.

    Midnight's Children - Salman Rushdie

    By all accounts the Best of the Bookers. Pompous drivel. Felt like it was never going to end.

    The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown

    A huge best seller. Never going to top any classics list but surely worth a punt as a holiday read. Binned it after 70 pages. I really did throw it in the bin. Unreadable. Hilariously badly written. I'll never attempt one of his books ever again but I don't think he'll miss me.
    sabrinakat likes this.
  2. cloudmonkeys

    cloudmonkeys New commenter

    'We Need to Talk About Kevin'. Managed about 5 pages. 'Cloudatlas' by David Mitchell. Ashamed to say I didn't really enjoy 'To Kill A Mockingbird' either. Sorry to all
  3. cloudmonkeys

    cloudmonkeys New commenter

    Sorry to all those who love any of these, I meant to say!!
    lindenlea likes this.
  4. cosmosinfrance

    cosmosinfrance Star commenter

    I loved Remains of the Day - all that repressed yearning. I agree with you, nick, about Midnight's Children though - unreadable rubbish.

    I'm slightly ashamed to say I have never enjoyed Dickens and don't get me started on Hardy.
  5. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    I liked 'We Need To Talk About Kevin', loved 'Cloud Atlas' (one that really needs perseverence though) and also 'To Kill A Mockingbird'.

    In terms of Hardy, I liked Jude The Obscure but it did rather make me feel like putting my head in the oven afterwards.
    kitkatscotia likes this.
  6. Flere-Imsaho

    Flere-Imsaho Star commenter

    I didn't get very far into We Need To Talk About Kevin. Loved Midnight's Children.
    I really disliked the bit of The Wind Up Bird Chronicle that I read.
  7. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter

    Stranger in a strange land - Robert Heinlein.

    Praised as a masterwork of sci-fi... found it to be sorely lacking and very 'of it's time'. i.e. the 60s.
    Flere-Imsaho likes this.
  8. HelenREMfan

    HelenREMfan Star commenter

    I really Liked "We need to talk about Kevin"...... "Jude" is my favourite book !!!

    On reading this thread I almost felt picked on!!!!

    I agree re Midnight's Children. I have never managed to get into any Virginia Woolf.
  9. minnie me

    minnie me Star commenter

    Loved ' Kevin ' . Could not get excited about ' Mockingbird ' . Don't think Dan Brown counts as literature. Hardy was a genius.
    In answer to the question anything by AS Byatt
  10. bombaysapphire

    bombaysapphire Star commenter

    Lord of the Rings - all that elvish gibberish irritated me.

    I agree with @cloudmonkeys about Cloud Atlas.

    I love most of the other books mentioned on this thread though.
  11. sparkleghirl

    sparkleghirl Star commenter

    For years I wanted to read War & Peace. When I eventually started I just couldn't get into it at all. It wasn't the multiple names confusion, it was just that I didn't like any of the characters and didn't care what happened to them.

    Lord of the Rings - no, Just couldn't, Someone said I should see the film instead but I just didn't care enough.

    Dan Brown - I haven't even tried. Saw the Da Vinci film and it was cringemakingly awful. And obvious. Nothing of subtle details, the character lurking in the background couldn't just be left there, the camera had to zoom in and stay there for a few seconds too long just so you couldnit miss it. I really really thought the book must be better.

    Tried Hardy a few times in my youth and thought it too slow and boring. The one day it clicked and I serial red Hardy for a few months, way back when you could buy classic paperbacks for 99p.

    But I love Murakami - how could anyone not love Murakami???

    OK; going to start the opposite thread now. Which books did you not expect to like but loved?
  12. cosmosinfrance

    cosmosinfrance Star commenter

    Loved War and Peace - once I managed to get the names sorted!

    Hated Lord of the Rings - one of the few books I gave up on. I normally plough on thinking
    there will be some redeeming features. No, none.

    I really wanted to like A Place of Greater Safety, Hilary Mantel, and I manfully kept going for at least 500 pages but I had to give up. It was too wordy and, in spite of having some knowledge of the French Revolution, too confusing.
  13. walkingfred

    walkingfred Occasional commenter

    I had to read Moby Dick at uni. I hated it. I hated every single thing about it. Tiny writing, Bible thin paper, fifteen pages dedicated to the whiteness of the whale... no pictures!
    And to make matters worse, I was the only one in my tutorial who had actually finished it, so I then needed to discuss it, at length, for an hour and a half exclusively with my tutor who was writing his PHD paper on it. Bad times :(
    I love both WNTTAK and Cloud Atlas. No pictures either, but pretty good nonetheless.
  14. Underachiever

    Underachiever New commenter

    The Catcher in the Rye

    Please don't hate me.
    kitkatscotia likes this.
  15. emerald52

    emerald52 Star commenter

    The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro. It's set in Arthurian England and is a journey. Ugh! It's a book club read so will persevere but it is dire. I also loathed the pilgrimage of Harold Fry, silly man.
  16. secretsiren

    secretsiren Star commenter

    Well, I liked 'War and Peace' and 'To Kill A Mockingbird', and I like Dan Brown as a bit of a light read.
    I hated 'The English Patient' - it's one of about five books I've never finished. By the time I got halfway through, I was so indifferent to what happened to the characters that I started inventing new stories in my head about them.
    I also don't like Dickens' stuff, which puts me at a disadvantage in English teaching circles!
  17. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter


    Wolf Hall

    Best wishes

  18. Underachiever

    Underachiever New commenter

    Interesting. I appear to be a new commenter even though I've been posting on and off for 11 years.
  19. Math-Worksheets-Galore

    Math-Worksheets-Galore Occasional commenter

    Mmmmmmm - anyone really monitoring all of these forums/threads? Well yes, as soon as anything sounds just a tad too controversial ..... Wham! A new commentator appears to be one who has less than 25 likes or less than 100 postings ... check how many you have posted.
  20. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter


    There have been several threads about this. Basically it was the move-over from Old-TES to Nu-TES; most people lost their past postings count. So you started from zero.

    Not often you get a chance to start afresh - don't knock it!

    As @Math-Worksheets-Galore says, if you have fewer than X likes or fewer than Y messages (AKA posts), you are in one category or other. Somewhere or other there is a chart that shows this.

    Good gracious - how could they POSSIBLY monitor even 10% of what is posted! ;)

    I understand that not all reports result in action by the Moderation Team.

    Best wishes


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