The I-Put-It-Down-And-Wanted-To-Burn-It Thread

Discussion in 'Fantasy / Horror' started by Watcher, Feb 11, 2008.

  1. Watcher

    Watcher The Eye that Looks

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    Spoiler Warning! Others may respond with specific details! You have been warned.

    I searched in hopes to resurrect a long dead thread to fulfill my needs but i could not find one. So I have decided to create my own!

    Have you ever had to put down a book for any numbers of reasons? The story didn't appeal to you or maybe the author's style of writing just wasn't your cup of tea? I personally find it very difficult to stop reading something once I am in full swing. So it was very hard when I got to page 234 of A Cavern of Black Ice by J.V. Jones to simply walk away.

    The story was just getting to a point where I could care less. I found that every time I got to a section on Ash, I would cringe inwardly. It became more of a chore then enjoyment in the end. My recent reads include The Blade Itself by Joe Abercrombieand The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss so I found myself spoiled with rich characterization and flowing storylines. The whole tone of the novel began to repulse me rather then intrigue.

    Has this ever happened to you? Was there a book that you could not take anymore of?
     
  2. DailyAlice

    DailyAlice Registered User

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    Oh, sure. That can't-stop-reading phenomenon becomes rarer as you get older.

    Mm. Guess I'll start with THE DA VINCI CODE.
     
  3. Takoren

    Takoren Registered User

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    The Warrior-Prophet. I finished it, but then I got rid of all three volumes of the series, never to read them again. And I never read the last one. Too much oppressive negativity, not a character in the book that was worth my time (except Kellhus), etc. The first book kept me going based solely on that character and the intriguing philosophical aspects.

    Soul of the Fire by Terry Goodkind. Actually, this was a put-the-series-down move, ultimately. I got halfway through it and couldn't take it anymore. I fully intended to get back to it, but realized only after reading some other stuff that I hated the Sword of Truth series. I sold all my copies of those, too.
     
  4. shadow9d9

    shadow9d9 Banned

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    I actually literally have burned a book back in college... I read this book for class(I never read books generally for class) and come test time, the test didn't even reference the book! The book was terrible and it didn't even mean anything for the class! I tried to light it on fire, but the pages were too glossy! So I had to find something else to catch fire and then use that to light the book.. then my friends and I went behind the Quad and enjoyed throwing it around and watching it spark.

    I still have the burnt book and keep it on my shelf as a reminder and memento. It was "daughter of the river".. not a terrible book I guess... but it wasted my time!

    My most hated book is Stranger in a Strange Land that I merely threw out instead of the burning it deserved. It went fine for the first half of the book.. but then took a nose dive and the author hijacked the characters to make long monologues about the author's personal views.. completely foregoing the story and destroying all resemblances to the first half!
     
  5. shadow9d9

    shadow9d9 Banned

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    Funny, Warrior Prophet is indeed my favorite book, period. I love gritty realism where nothing works out perfect and the characters are real and fallible.
     
  6. Sfinx

    Sfinx Life's a riddle

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    Sums up exactly the first thought that popped into my head when reading this thread's title :) But fully realising that sharing a painful experience can have a cathartic and healing effect I will not fight it - but contribute: Rocannon's World (Ursula LeGuin) I found to be a terrible disappointment (high expectations - i really loved Earthsea - will do that for you). And yea, Da Vinci code...Cryptonomicon...Foundation series...WoT...I'll stop now before the oppressive negativity evoked by these titles gets to me :D
     
  7. suciul

    suciul Read interesting books

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    Iron Council by C. Mieville and Romanitas by S. McDougall. The first one since I had big expectations and was one of the biggest disappointments ever in books, the second one since it was a big time junk that sounded so well...
     
  8. Corkiexx

    Corkiexx New Member

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    LOL same here!


    Also Rhapsody/Prophecy(the first two books), really now, who wants to READ about sex?
     
  9. Murrin

    Murrin Registered User

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    I've yet to have this reaction to a book. Could be because I've not read a genuinely bad book in years (a couple not as good as expected, but nothing to make me give up). The last bad book I read I managed to get through because it was short--the bad books I read earlier than that one I wasn't yet well-read enough to realise were so bad (I couldn't even try to read them these days).
    Besides that, while I've gotten past my former compulsion to finish off the book series' that I start, I still have to finish every book I start reading. Even Le Morte D'Arthur, which I put down for three months because it was slow and dense and I wanted to get on with some other reading, but I still went back to it eventually (because, despite the prose, it was still interesting).
     
  10. Brahm_K

    Brahm_K Registered User

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    Aww, Iron Council and The Warrior Prophet are two of my favorite books. Anyway, some books I've given up on:

    Stranger in a Strange Land, by Robert Heinlein: The first half sucked. It was poorly written, had paper thin characters, and had some horrible dialogue- but I kept reading because it was an interesting idea that I had heard a lot of good things about. Then, as Shadow said, the book becomes a series of monologues of Jubal Harshaw, the hippie version of Richard Rahl (ie, a character I hate whose only purpose is to spout out the author's crazy views). Yes Heinlein; the key to a peaceful and prosperous society is people having sex all the time.

    Goodkind- I stopped somewhere in the middle of Stone of Tears. I'm surprised I made it that far, but I had heard such good things. I think it might have been at the scene where Kahlan rides naked and painted into battle in order to utilize the important element of surprise/stupidity that I just couldn't take it anymore- though the fire speech 30 pages into book 1 came close as well.

    R.A. Salvatore's Iceland Dale trilogy- I read the Dark Elf trilogy first, thought it was pretty average, and then was given this one by a friend who raved about it. Its not horrible- just average too, and the same old and I really couldn't handle any more of Drizzt's moralizing.

    Those are the only three I can think of- I nearly always finish a book, no matter its quality, and while thats not something I might do for a series, I've been very lucky in the series I've chosen to read.
     
  11. courtney

    courtney DreddeyeKnight

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    i stopped goodkind's sword of truth books at around te 6th or 7th; can't remember which, cos i've done a pretty good job at blurring the memories. trauma has that effect sometimes.

    just gave up on kate elliots the burning stone; tried to get into this series becaause i'd eard (read) good stuff about it, but finally gave in to the urge; i think its progress.:eek:
     
  12. Self

    Self Registered User

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    Gene Wolfe New Sun as stated in another thread...Terry Goodkind, didn't make it through book 1, anything "new" by David Eddings (as he hasn't written anything new in a long time, merely rehashed his last work), they are my last 3 failed attempts anyway.

    Older ones that spring to mind are Donaldsons Thomas Covenant, the most unlikable lead in history IMO, & Terry Brooks Shannara aka LOTR rip off.
     
  13. Miriamele

    Miriamele Witch of the Woods

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    Although it wasn't all that bad and I read it through to the end, I wanted to burn Micheal Stackpole's The Dark Glory War because he kept spending so much time describing everyone's outfits. Down to the colour of the trim on the edge of the cape and everything. :rolleyes:

    Then, at the end of his Dragoncrown War Series, which was actually pretty good, I wanted to burn The Grand Crusade because after reading through the four books in this series, I was met with an ending that was impossibly stupid and disappointing as the end of such an epic storyline. I mean, it was really, really stupid.
     
  14. Rob B

    Rob B \m/ BEER \m/ Staff Member

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    I had a similar feeling to Anne Rice's The Witching Hour. I felt the ending was a complete betrayal of everything that preceded it.
     
  15. Alchemist

    Alchemist Registered User

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    Vellum by Hal Duncan. I appreciated the language and ideas, couldn't get into the story and general "White Wolf RPG" vibe.

    Also, the Elder Staves by Steven Oliverez. Let's just say that I question the authenticity of the 43 out of 49 reviews on Amazon that were 4 or 5 stars. Come on, now (I still own the book as a reminder of how important it is to get a real editor to prevent such atrocities from seeing print).
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2008
  16. Bear

    Bear I eat fish.

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    The Sword of Truth Series
    The Wheel of Time Series
    The Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn Series
    The Lord of the Isles Series
    The Alvin Maker Series
    The Fionvar Tapestry
    The Riftwar Saga
    The Belgariad

    I couldn't make it through any of these sets. Most of them I stopped after book 1. I generally finish a book once I start it (though I sometimes set it aside for a later time, if I can tell I'm not much in the mood for it), but if I didn't enjoy it enough to start the next in the set, then I don't. The above are all ones I doubt I'll ever continue with.

    In the case of Kay, I've really enjoyed some of his other books. But Fionvar was pretty "blah."
     
  17. peadarog

    peadarog Author of "The Inferior"

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    I'm always amazed when I read a thread like this, how many people want to burn the books I love most in the world and how books that I threw against the wall in frustration, are venerated. One day, I know I'm going to pop into one of this thread and find a book of mine smouldering on somebody's bonfire!

    Back on topic: as I get older, I finish fewer and fewer books. Life is too short.
     
  18. Ouroboros

    Ouroboros Give me liberty!

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    Peadar-

    Yep, that's the nature of threads like this- they make you realiase how widely tastes vary.

    Personally if I'm reading something I don't particularly like then my first instinct is to try and grit my teeth and get through it. I don't like loose ends, and sometimes I'll try and soldier on through a multi-book series if I can find even the slightest redeeming quality.

    As I get older, though, I find myself increasingly giving books short shrift if I don't take to them. There are so many quality new releases pouring out every year, and so many classics to uncover, that I just don't have the time to waste on something I'm not enjoying.

    Offhand some of the books/series that I've given up on over the years:-

    -Most recently, Robin Hobb's 'Shaman's Crossing'. I think Hobb has made an art out of confusing victimhood with heroism, and builds her plots around almost sadistic destructions of her main characters. On a values level I can't get into her books anymore, and the depressing air of her work is compounded by the first-person narrative she uses.

    - RA Salvatore's Demon Dactly novels. Unreadable after the first book. It felt like fan-fic (the bad kind).

    - Richard Morgan's 'Black Man'. OK, I'm cheating here. I did finish this, but I may yet burn it or throw it into a vat of acid at some point considering how dissapointing and objectionable I found it.
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2008
  19. peadarog

    peadarog Author of "The Inferior"

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    Hey, it's my first instinct too. But it's rare I'll give something more than 100 pages to get going. I also cheat a little: if some book has had huge, huge praise, I'll push on a lot further. Unfair, I know.
     
  20. Gargy

    Gargy New Member

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    Wheel of Time
    The Belgariad
    Sword of Truth.

    The most painful by far was the sword of truth series, though its unintentionally funny parts has a strange attraction.