When I was younger (aka anytime before college), I would never give up reading a book. If I started a book, I felt obligated to finish. Even if the book was boring. Even if it made me feel icky. Even if it was terrible. Then I went to college, was forced to read a lot of pointless books, and became a book snob. *dramatic music* Now, I give up books left and right if I can’t get into them. I usually say if the book doesn’t interest me after 100 pages, I’ll quit. Sometimes, though, I give up sooner than 100 pages. So here are ten books I struggled to read and mostly gave up on.
(This prompt is from this week’s Top Ten Tuesdays: books you had a hard time with… tweak as needed.)
Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky: I read this book in high school, and while I read the whole thing (at least from what I can remember), it was a struggle to read. The Russian names combined with an unlikeable main character and a plot that takes place entirely in said main character’s head… it was hard. Let’s just say when I see a copy of it on my bookshelf, I still grimace. (But hey, there were other books I read in high school that I enjoyed later in life, so maybe I should give it a second chance?)
Catch-22 by Joseph Heller: I also read this book in high school. Only I didn’t finish this one. There’s about twenty-five pages left that I never read. 1. Because the book was just stupid and disgusting and 2. my twelfth-grade self was just done with high school. Done. I regret nothing. (Also, I just learned there is a sequel and I have to ask: WHY?!)
Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell: I read this book because my grandma told me she’d give me money for college if I read it. After 24-hour car rides to and from South Dakota, I finished this book. Did my grandma ever give me that money? No, she did not. Do I hate this book with a passion because the main character is infuriating and the ending was the worst? Yes, I do.
Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain: I started reading this, decided it was boring, and quit. I don’t even think I got through the first chapter. I’ve been told by others how “amazing” and “eye-opening” it is. Well, good for them. They can go talk about it, and I can go read other books. I didn’t want to talk about it anyways.
Dear Luke, We Need to Talk, Darth: And Other Pop Culture Correspondences by John Moe: I got this book to review because I thought it would be hilarious. Do you know what it was? Not hilarious. It was actually really stupid. Maybe I didn’t understand all the references, but the ones I did understand weren’t funny either.
Not By Sight by Kate Breslin: I started this book because I liked her other book, For Such a Time, but I could not get into this at all. The plot moved slow, and it didn’t intrigue me. I hope other people love it because it seemed okay and the cover is pretty.
Carve the Mark by Veronica Roth: I should have known after Divergent that Veronica Roth’s ability to write a good story is non-existent. But I ignored the intelligent part of my brain because the cover looked cool and I thought maybe she had time to edit her work and make it better. Well, I was wrong. This book not only rips off word-for-word a line from Star Wars, but nothing happens for pages. Pages. I fell asleep before I could finish this one, so I gave it up after about 100 pages.
Defy the Stars by Claudia Gray: I desperately wanted to love this book. I enjoyed Claudia Gray’s Firebird series (though I haven’t read the third one yet). So I thought, “Yes! Claudia Gray plus outer space adventure. Give it to me now!” But I couldn’t get into it. Nothing was happening. Or maybe too much was happening. I might try to read it again later, but for now, I had to put it aside.
The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli: I read twenty pages of this and then read several Goodreads reviews of it and decided to give up. I just could tell I wasn’t going to like it. It felt like it was pushing several agendas, plus it was contemporary romance and… well, I rarely enjoy contemporary romance. *shrugs*
The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch: Including this book on this list makes me the most sad. I’ve heard a lot of wonderful things about this book from my friends and people on the Internet. But I started it and couldn’t concentrate on the writing enough to have a clue what was happening. It could have been a combination of having too many other books to read, my brain being tired because this summer has been insane, and needing to take it slow to comprehend what was happening. So I’m not completely giving up on this one. I’m going to read it again when I have more time to just breathe and soak up the story. I actually have a copy of it at my house ready to go whenever I find that moment.
What books did you struggle to read? Any books on this list I should give a second chance? Don’t forget to link-up with Top Ten Tuesdays to share your list!