Recommend some bad books

@willocfc (965)
Australia
February 15, 2007 5:52am CST
People occasionally ask for good books on such-and-such a topic. Well, I'm sick of that. This is a thread for bad book recommendations--books that are just awful, and exceptional in their awfulness. They can be in any genre, but the genre must be defined. Completely unique books are hard to evaluate--a book has to be bad in comparison with other books on similar topics. Furthermore, a book can't be called bad just because it's tremendously dated; it has to have been bad when it was current. But a book can be bad for many reasons--bad writing, bad ideas, factual errors, even a horrible edition of an otherwise decent book. Please describe, and if interesting enough, provide an excerpt
7 people like this
18 responses
@Myrrdin (3601)
• Canada
15 Feb 07
Ohhh.... wonderful thread. Bad books, well that's a tough one to answer though isn't it. One of the worst in the sci-fi genre I ever read was one in a series I think called Lensman or something like that. I was just dreadful, it was a space opera of epically bad proportions, pure tripe in my opinion. Dispite being a huge Tolkien fan and massive LoTR's geek I would definately place The Silmarillion in the bad book field. Although it was interesting to read some of the imaginary history of Tolkien's imaginary world, it is a fictional history book, an reads like any other history book. In the vein of Quit While Your Ahead, I love Piers Anthony but if he should have stoped the Xanth series ages ago, and Robert Jordan carried the Wheel of Time series too far as well, I never did finish reading that series. I abhor Who Has Seen the Wind by W.O. Mitchell, and no matter how strong his ties are to canada you couldn't pay me enough to read anything else he wrote. I found his writing to be awkward. In his defense though I was in grade 6 when I read that, and I was forced to do so, so maybe the writing isn't quite that bad.
1 person likes this
@reinydawn (11651)
• United States
16 Feb 07
I tried to read THe Silmarillion in high school and just couldn't get into it. I now have my fathers books (that's among them) and keep thinking I want to try it again...
@Myrrdin (3601)
• Canada
16 Feb 07
If you are a Tolkien fan I would still recommend it, lots of insights into Middle Earth. If you are only a casual fan of the Lord of the Rings, or have never read the Lord of the Rings I would avoid it like the plague... It took me over a decade to read the entire thing, and although I liked some of the stories and enjoyed learning more, it was not a pleasant read.
@thyst07 (2091)
• United States
15 Feb 07
1984 by George Orwell Animal Farm, also by Orwell To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee All of these books have important societal messages, but I did not enjoy any of them. All of them were horrendously dry, and the stories weren't exactly pleasant. Also, in Animal Farm, I didn't like the talking animals. I don't know why, because I liked the ones in the Chronicles of Narnia...the ones in Animal Farm were just stupid and hokey. I hated that book.
@nicolec (2674)
• United States
15 Feb 07
Oh no, I loved those books. I haven't read them in ages, but I remember really enjoying them. But I guess that's what makes this world great, differences of opinions!
@Myrrdin (3601)
• Canada
15 Feb 07
Oh my, well To Kill a Mockingbird I have never read, but 1884 is excellent as is Animal Farm, but I can see your point about the talking animals seeming hokey, though when I read it I took it as that being the point.
• United States
16 Feb 07
How funny... these three are among my favorite books! I think that perhaps you will find that if you go back later and read these books you might appreciate them more than the first time you read them.
@emeraldisle (13158)
• United States
15 Feb 07
I've read a lot of books over the years. Trying to remember the bad ones aren't that easy. However there are a few that stand out that I really didn't like. I read them thinking ok they will get better or because I'd been told they were really good. The Tommyknockers The Great Gatsby Jane Eyre Those three in my opinion were lousy and ones not to bother with. I know there are others but those three came right to mind. See them, run away :) Don't bother.
@Myrrdin (3601)
• Canada
16 Feb 07
Really? See Tommyknockers is one of my favorite Stephen King books, I haven't read the Great Gatsby but I vaguely remember picking up Jane Eyre and reading a few pages....
• Malaysia
16 Feb 07
Jane Eyre is one of my all time favourite books! I like the story and I really like the character. She's tough as a woman and very determined. Plus she's had a very bad childhood and an equally bad guardian. I read Jane Eyre only once and fell head over heels in love with it. I was so happy that she and Mr Rochester got together at the end of the story. Sorry if I sounded too mushy!
@feralwoman (2199)
• Australia
15 Feb 07
I think the "Mills & Boon" genre of romance books are the most awful things on the market. My mother used to read them and then pass them on to me. They were so bad they were laughable! Life just isn't like that.
@Myrrdin (3601)
• Canada
15 Feb 07
See I think the entire genre of romance books are a waste of paper.... but then again to each his own.
@nicolec (2674)
• United States
15 Feb 07
Bridget Jones Diary. I haven't gotten past the first chapter. I never saw the movie, so I can't comment on that. I'm sure I'll slack for that one, since it was so popular. But I coudn't do it. I found the character to be...how do I say it....an idiot. The premise of a single woman trying to lose weight, quit smoking and find the man of her dreams is so cliche. I just couldn't do it.
@kiiizu (1901)
• Estonia
15 Feb 07
I absolutely agree with you! I also couldn't get very far with it. Not only Bridget but all characters I met on my short track seemed to be idiots, and I'm not very fond of idiots. Anyway, about a year ago I tried to read "Olivia Joules and the overactive imagination" and found it quite readable. At least it's witty.
@rajikoshy (743)
• India
22 Feb 07
http://www.sendspace.com/file/n9b2oy http://www.sendspace.com/file/83b0ka
@AskAlly (3627)
• Canada
21 Feb 07
Normally I like Dean Koontz as an author. Not in this case though! ODD and FOREVER ODD. I made it to page 45 and gave up. "Once again Odd will stand against our worst fears. Around him will gather new allies and old, some living and some not. For in the battle to come, there can be no innocent bystanders and every sacrifice can tip the balance between despair and hope" Just too corny.
@Josette_J (806)
• Malaysia
16 Feb 07
Bad books huh? Interesting. I would like to recommend the Gossip Girl books, which could be deemed bad for teenagers. I also don't like Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants by Ann Brashares. It was like too 'bimbo' for me. I don't think I'd mind bad writing but I really mind the bad ideas. Teenagers are really easy to be influenced so these bimboish books are not quite suitable for them. It might only make them worse, I think.
@ebudae88 (110)
• Philippines
16 Feb 07
here's a good read: Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami on transient love and Disgrace by J.M. Coetzee on the bleak tale of human misery. :)
• Saint Vincent And The Grenadines
16 Feb 07
umm ok Digital Fortress by Dan Brown. I've read other books by him and some of them i like, so that you know that i am not one of those anti dan brown radicals. But this one is simply BAD. And it talks about spain, describing us like a 4th world country where we are all bullfighters or something like that. Mr Brown should make an effort to travel to the places he talks about on his books and stick to what he sees in the novels, instead of talking about a bunch of cliches.
• United States
16 Feb 07
I didnt really like "The Red Tent" or "The Da Vinci Code" yeah. Those are two I didnt like. I have others but those are the ones that come to mind when you say recommend bad books. Okay why they were bad. "The Red Tent" wasnt what I thought it was about. I didnt like the subject, although it wasnt based on the bible it was based in part on it. I dont know, I just didnt like it. The red tent was where the girls when who have their periods all week long each month. Fun. "The Da Vinci Code" I didnt like the idea. I knew it was fiction, but the fact that some many people questioned if it was real and still do. I dont like the subject matter it brought up. Just didnt like it.
• United States
16 Feb 07
Anything by Ernest Hemingway.
• United States
16 Feb 07
ok, "the summons" by john grisham...usually, i love his books, however that one was crap!!! i threw it across the room i was so angry with it! and the last three books of stephen king's "the dark tower"...he took such a cop out with the ending, with the first four being sooooo GOOD, the last three just didn't live up to the rest of them..."the girl who loved tom gordon" i never made it all the way through, i just couldn't....also "wicked", though from what i understand, where i left off (halfway through, after leaving the "convent") is where it starts to get good, but i just can't bring myself to pick it back up and read it.
@reinydawn (11651)
• United States
16 Feb 07
I'm pretty sure I recently read a book that I totally hated, but kept thinking "it's got to get better" and I actually finished it. I almost burned it, it was that bad. I have no clue what it was. I did not like Hanibal, although I like the other stories. I know a few other people that could not finish it. It just wasn't very "concrete" and made very little sense. I thought it would make a good movie though because of the gore... I haven't seen the movie (except for the scene where he hangs the guy out of the window by his intestines or something like that) so I don't know if it was any better. It had a horrible ending also. If a book ends bad, I really don't like it at all!
• United States
16 Feb 07
All right, here is my list. Billy Budd by Herman Melville. I loved the storyline, the character, the allegory, whatever, thought it was great, but the writing style is just ridiculous. My teacher kept saying how it was characteristic of the period. I've read other books from that period. It isn't. It's just ridiculous. The man had problems. He rambles on, talks down to the reader, writes in an upset tone - it was the most insulting book I ever read, in a way, bar none, not even that crap by Ann Coulter. Hawthorne writes a sentence that's a paragraph long and you don't even notice until you count the words. Melville does it and you feel like you've just read three novels. "Can it be the phenomenon, disowned or at least concealed, that in some criminal cases puzzles the courts? For this cause have our juries at times not only to endure the prolonged contentions of lawyers with their fees, but also the yet more perplexing strife of the medical experts in theirs? But why leave it to them? Why not subpoena as well the clerical proficients? Their vocation bringing them into peculiar contact with so many human beings, and sometimes in their least guarded hour, in interviews very much more confidential than those of physician and patient; this would seem to qualify them to know something about those intricacies involved in the question of moral responsibility, whether in a given case, say..." And I can't be bothered to finish that sentence because I'm typing this all out and it's another three lines. And, remember, this is all a book about a young sailor. It reads like a 19th century National Novel Writing Month project. Also - Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli. A story about a "weird" girl who we were supposed to sympathize with, but really she was weird in the wrong way and you just end up reading it thinking, "does she have PROBLEMS?" ... good idea executed badly. Maybe if she had wanted to save the whales and worn weird socks we could have believed it, but riding to a school dance on a tricycle and refusing to write on your desk unless it's covered with a tablecloth is really just... strange. I also hated Artemis Fowl. Everyone else loved it though, so don't listen to me...
@Bee1955 (3887)
• United States
15 Feb 07
"Mein Kampf" (My Story) by Adolph Hitler
@kiiizu (1901)
• Estonia
15 Feb 07
The books at first came on my mind aren't translated to English and I'm sure they'll never be. I guess works of Edgar Rice Burroughs are worth to mention there... The first part of Tarzan perhaps is not as bad than the others but also nothing to be excited of. I even can't to describe it properly - it's just a total rubbish.
@maribea (2366)
• Italy
15 Feb 07
I think it very difficult to recommend a book to others..reading is such a personal fact and therefore it is very difficult that you might like what I liked myself...as myself is concerned I am a very book-aholic and therefore I am reading and reading everything..it is very difficult that I stop reading a book before it is finished even if it is very bad...one of the book that I found a bad book for me was for example...A constant music by Vikhram Seth...I couldn't go on reading it because it was too slow...and I hate both slow books and slow fims..another book that it is still waiting for me to finish it is ...oh I don't know how it is entitled in English...in Italy they entitled it Scipio's dream...again, too slow...another was too violent and I think it was entitled..The codex of four (it is a literary translation from the Italian, again beg pardon but don't know it in English countries).. these are the only few bad ..really bad books i can recommend...I can add I've just finished APRIL IN PARIS...I didn't like it very much because I expected it to be more than this but I would not call it a bad book..only a simple, not great book