Worst/Overrated books.

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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Quercus » Tue Mar 03, 2015 4:46 pm UTC

Quizatzhaderac wrote:Have you been able to finish For sale: baby shoes, never worn?


Actually yes - I just re-read it today, twice :D

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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby freezeblade » Tue Mar 03, 2015 4:55 pm UTC

Re: Hemmingway

ugh. I agree. It's even worse because my girlfriend loves his writing. I find it...I don't know, something about it just doesn't process in my brain, and this is from someone that enjoys Joyce.
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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Kewangji » Wed Mar 04, 2015 12:11 am UTC

In my group of online friends we have a half-joke that people (young men) who like Hemingway (and Bukowski) are to be avoided. There's a very special type of immature person, we reckon, who hold those up to be the pinnacle of literature. So I definitely agree that he is overrated, and would like to throw Bukowski under the bus as well.
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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Jorpho » Wed Mar 04, 2015 1:59 am UTC

Quizatzhaderac wrote:Have you been able to finish For sale: baby shoes, never worn?
Just in case you're not aware, the link of that to Hemmingway is tenuous.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/For_sale:_ ... never_worn

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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Quizatzhaderac » Wed Mar 04, 2015 3:56 pm UTC

Hmm... I find Clarke's version of the story of the story hard to believe. If Hemingway proposed the bet, he likely hard already crafted the story before proposing the bet, which makes it a terrible bet to take.
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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby rat4000 » Fri Mar 20, 2015 7:14 pm UTC

Kewangji wrote:In my group of online friends we have a half-joke that people (young men) who like Hemingway (and Bukowski) are to be avoided. There's a very special type of immature person, we reckon, who hold those up to be the pinnacle of literature. So I definitely agree that he is overrated, and would like to throw Bukowski under the bus as well.
We won't be friends anytime soon, I guess. (Hemingway is not the pinnacle of literature but he has written at least two very good books. Bukowski is really really really good a lot of the time and mediocre occasionally.)

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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Kewangji » Fri Mar 20, 2015 10:50 pm UTC

If Hemingway describes rain, I think it's raining. It's not the, how do you say, tightness of the prose that I have problems with. And it's okay! We don't have to be friends. We can have healthy disagreements about literature and such.
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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Kristen23 » Tue Mar 31, 2015 6:19 am UTC

Two names come to mind when talking about the worst/most overrated books ever:
1. Miles To Go (by Miley Cyrus and Hilary Liftin): If you can't write good material on your own, you shouldn't try to go and publish a book. Like one critic very aptly put it: 'Basically, it felt like a staged book, a cry for sympathy and people to forget the stupid stuff she did, an attempt to look perfect.'

2. The Jungle (by Upton Sinclair): The work itself could hardly be called literary. It seems that the protagonist exists only for the sake of conjoining the various pieces of reportage. No emotional depth in the characters at all.

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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Jorpho » Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:30 pm UTC

Kristen23 wrote:1. Miles To Go (by Miley Cyrus and Hilary Liftin): If you can't write good material on your own, you shouldn't try to go and publish a book.
It's quite likely that Liftin did the, um, heavy liftin'.

Like one critic very aptly put it: 'Basically, it felt like a staged book, a cry for sympathy and people to forget the stupid stuff she did, an attempt to look perfect.'
But 2009 was before she did all the really stupid stuff.

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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby cardboard_armour » Mon Apr 27, 2015 6:27 pm UTC

I'm not sure whether I'd say it was overrated but I wish I'd never read Kakfa's 'The Castle'
To go through that it turns out the book is unfinished. :x

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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:49 pm UTC

I'm reading the first book in the Thomas Covenant series, and omagerb, I can't handle how slow and drudgetastic this book is. I have to read while I walk places otherwise I fall asleep. I'm fine with a confused protagonist, but not a completely disinterested one.
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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby bigglesworth » Mon Apr 27, 2015 9:01 pm UTC

Oh yeah, that was a book I gave up on when I was 16 and actually had time to tackle unimaginably large books I wasn't particularly enjoying.
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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby tarascon » Fri Jun 19, 2015 2:16 pm UTC

I expect a lot of heat for this, but I'd say pretty much anything by Stephen King (with the exception of The Shining).
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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Liri » Sat Jun 20, 2015 3:30 pm UTC

Breakfast of Champions. I'm usually a big Vonnegut fan, but I had to put that down 2/3 of the way through. I couldn't take any more of the horribly on-the-nose mockery. I now know how to draw an asshole, but gee whiz.

I liked Hemingway a lot in middle and high school, but I was in middle and high school. I haven't read any in a while and I'll try to retain the happy memories.
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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Euphonium » Sat Jun 20, 2015 10:28 pm UTC

Nineteen Eighty-Four. Holy shit, what utter trash.

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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby no-genius » Sun Jun 21, 2015 1:36 pm UTC

Euphonium wrote:Nineteen Eighty-Four. Holy shit, what utter trash.


What's wrong with it? We can disagree, but I don't know what the disagreement is.
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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby PeteP » Sun Jun 21, 2015 1:56 pm UTC

Quizatzhaderac wrote:Hmm... I find Clarke's version of the story of the story hard to believe. If Hemingway proposed the bet, he likely hard already crafted the story before proposing the bet, which makes it a terrible bet to take.

That sounds like it should make the story more believable, because that is something people do. "I can do something clever/cool/interesting bet me that I can't." And not few people do take such bets because it's just some books ten bucks. (How did I manage to write some books there, I definitely thought ten bucks and only noticed when looking back.)

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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Jorpho » Sun Jun 21, 2015 7:22 pm UTC

no-genius wrote:
Euphonium wrote:Nineteen Eighty-Four. Holy shit, what utter trash.
What's wrong with it? We can disagree, but I don't know what the disagreement is.
I would go into details, but there's a whole thread about it already.

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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Grop » Sun Jun 21, 2015 8:55 pm UTC

I might agree that 1984 may be overrated. Claiming it is utter trash is a bit strong to me.

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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Quizatzhaderac » Mon Jun 22, 2015 2:41 pm UTC

PeteP wrote:That sounds like it should make the story more believable, because that is something people do. "I can do something clever/cool/interesting bet me that I can't." And not few people do take such bets because it's just some books ten bucks.
Well, I kind of imagine Hemingway and friends as experienced gamblers. As such they'd be able to recognize the distinction that the proposer of the bet would already be certain one way or another.

For comparison, they might accept the bet "I bet I can punch a whole in that wall".
If there's a fresh fist sized hole in the wall, and a buddy comes up offering that bet, it's probably a scam for a 100 (today's money) dollars.
(How did I manage to write some books there, I definitely thought ten bucks and only noticed when looking back.)
That's currency in writers' heaven. Oscar Wilde has won a lot of bets over quotes, which is why so much is misattributed to him.
Last edited by Quizatzhaderac on Thu Jul 16, 2015 1:41 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby tarascon » Mon Jun 22, 2015 3:36 pm UTC

Quizatzhaderac wrote:Oscar Wilde has won a lot of bets over quotes, which is why so much is misattributed to him.


"Arguments are to be avoided: they are always vulgar and often convincing." :)

The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown. It's not a bad read but he took unmerited kudos for borrowing the premise from books like Holy Blood, Holy Grail which came out in 1982.
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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby debogail » Tue Jun 23, 2015 7:30 pm UTC

I found the first 1.5 books of LoTR to be particularly unenjoyable.

In terms of overrated, I have had more than one person tell me how powerful and moving the symbolism is in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. Admittedly, the last time I read it I was under 10, but I remember it as a fairly muddled, and not that remarkable. Certainly not something that I would gush over as an adult.

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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Aiwendil » Thu Jun 25, 2015 12:36 am UTC

debogail wrote:In terms of overrated, I have had more than one person tell me how powerful and moving the symbolism is in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. Admittedly, the last time I read it I was under 10, but I remember it as a fairly muddled, and not that remarkable. Certainly not something that I would gush over as an adult.


I think The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe is an entertaining book, but I don't think I would find the symbolism powerful and moving even if I were a Christian.

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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Jumble » Fri Jun 26, 2015 9:34 pm UTC

I read the series for the first time when I was 19, and found LWW the second hardest to bother with, after the Magician's Nephews. Although, I did find the overt book of revelations cod in the last battle made me want to throw the book in the nearest waste disposal unit.
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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Izawwlgood » Sat Jun 27, 2015 6:13 am UTC

My family gushes over The Sparrow, but I don't generally trust their views on literature, especially literature involving religion.
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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby ahammel » Sat Jun 27, 2015 2:28 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:My family gushes over The Sparrow, but I don't generally trust their views on literature, especially literature involving religion.

I didn't find The Sparrow anywhere near as profound as it obviously thinks it is.
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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Izawwlgood » Sat Jun 27, 2015 5:57 pm UTC

That is precisely how I would describe their conversations about it
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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby ahammel » Sat Jun 27, 2015 7:36 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:That is precisely how I would describe their conversations about it

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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Jorpho » Sun Jun 28, 2015 4:20 pm UTC

Jumble wrote:Although, I did find the overt book of revelations cod in the last battle
There's a talking fish ?

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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby tarascon » Sun Jun 28, 2015 7:27 pm UTC

Jorpho wrote:There's a talking fish ?


Oh yes. http://forward.com/articles/9460/fishy- ... s-beliefs/
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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby maybeagnostic » Thu Jul 16, 2015 6:34 am UTC

ahammel wrote:
Izawwlgood wrote:My family gushes over The Sparrow, but I don't generally trust their views on literature, especially literature involving religion.

I didn't find The Sparrow anywhere near as profound as it obviously thinks it is.

I liked The Sparrow quite a bit when I read it. I barely remember anything about it now but I don't recall finding it particularly profound just well written.
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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby The Moomin » Wed Jul 22, 2015 8:34 am UTC

I find Charles Dickens over-rated, I just can't get into his novels.

I managed A Christmas Carol, but had to give up partway through The Pickwick Papers as the writing style didn't keep me interested.
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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby Jorpho » Thu Jul 23, 2015 5:50 am UTC

If I recall correctly, Dickens was paid by the word, and he was obliged to end his every chapter on some kind of cliffhanger to ensure the reader would buy the next installment.

Reading A Tale of Two Cities in seventh grade was painful and I got practically nothing out of it. Reading Great Expectations a few years later was more tolerable, perhaps on account of my having matured somewhat, though I didn't much care for it.

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Re: Worst/Overrated books.

Postby serutan » Tue Sep 01, 2015 5:43 am UTC

Jorpho wrote:Reading A Tale of Two Cities in seventh grade was painful and I got practically nothing out of it. Reading Great Expectations a few years later was more tolerable, perhaps on account of my having matured somewhat, though I didn't much care for it.


My experience was the opposite. I hated Great Expectations, possibly due to a Teacher From Hell.

I read A Tale of Two Cities in 10th grade. It started slowly, but as it went on, I actually got in to it.

My nominee for overrated is Wuthering Heights(read in 12th grade). It was just Godawful, despite having
a teacher I liked.
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