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Off Topic > What's The Worst Book You've Ever Read

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message 1: by Manda (new)

Manda (bookwenchmanda) | 307 comments I was looking through the topics about books with bad reviews and it got me to thinking about some of the bad books I've encountered. I'm curious to hear if there has ever been a book that you really disliked and felt like you wasted your time on it.

For me it was a book called Lost. I'm a huge fan of Macguire's work, but Lost seemed to fall short of his other works. It was very different than his other books he's become known for though.

message 2: by Beth (new)

Beth (beth_in_sanjose) There was a paperback book I read some years ago by James Patterson that I found so awful that as soon as I finished it (yes, I pushed through to the end) I threw it across the room. Not long after that I gave it away; something I almost never do with books I own. I cannot remember the title. I have completely flushed it from my memory. Now, his type of stories are the type I usually enjoy quite a bit. He is very popular, and several of his stories have been turned into successful movies. Still, this one book really and truly left me angry for wasting my time with it.

message 3: by Luisa (new)

Luisa (deborahluisa) For me was Evermore by Alyson Nöel

It was so awful i couldn't finish. I gave up. This was the very first book (and the only one so far) i gave up.

.•*¨`*•✿ ✿•*¨`*•. Christine .•*¨`*•✿ ✿•*¨`*• I'm probably in the minority here, but, I really disliked The Hobbit and forced myself to finish it. I think the writing style just turned me off.

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War I kinda skimmed through it to the end, but it is on my did not finish list. There are probably other, but those are the two that stick out for me.

message 5: by Michelle (new)

Michelle Winchester The Struggle It was even worse than the first book and I even found it in some ways worse than Twilight. Boring characters, boring plot, and a style that would be good for a fifth-grade essay "Who Is My Idol", not a published book.

message 6: by Zaz, Mood Minion (new)

Zaz | 1387 comments Mod
The only one I can remember is Le miroir de Cassandre. The story was pretty dull and even if I like the author I never finished it.
There are some series which disappointed me a lot and I regret deeply spending money for the box sets (Narnia Chronicles and A Song of Ice and Fire). Because of them, boxes are a no way for me now and I'm really careful with authors I don't know.

message 7: by Megan (last edited Jan 26, 2015 08:49AM) (new)

Megan (bookworm_booklover) | 170 comments I have to say, I think the only book I didn't enjoy reading at all was To Kill a Mockingbird. Other than that the one that comes to mind is Oliver Twist but I'm not sure I count that, I was in grade eight and I got frustrated because the old English was making me read slower, I didn't stop because of the story.

message 8: by Lora (new)

Lora (misplacedselchie) | 347 comments Of Mice And Men.

I had to read it in school and it is the only one I never finished. Ugh. I would seriously reread Twilight or Evermore or even Maze Runner. I HATE Steinbeck

message 9: by Emily (new)

Emily | 5 comments Definitely P.S. I Love You. I thought the writing was horrible.

message 10: by Anja (new)

Anja (thesofa) | 86 comments The Judge and His Hangman by Friedrich Dürrenmatt. I had to read it for the German class in grade 8 (in German, of course) and I really didn't like it at all!

message 11: by Sophie (new)

Sophie (sawphie) I so agree Anja, I forgot about this book, but it is indeed one of the worst books I read! Maybe reading it in German didn't help either ;)

message 12: by Anja (new)

Anja (thesofa) | 86 comments I doubt that it would be nice to read in any language!

message 13: by Cristina (new)

Cristina (cristina_urs) | 23 comments Definitely Delirium I couldn't finish it no matter how hard I wanted to. It was the most boring book I've ever came across in my life.

message 14: by Allie (new)

Allie The Almost Moon by Alice Sebold. So bad I was physically revolted.

message 15: by Marie (new)

Marie (bunchabooks) The only book I've ever regretted reading is She's Come Undone. I really didn't want to finish it. But my friend who recommended it to me in the first place talked me into finishing it by promising that it got better and I wouldn't regret it. I regretted it. Even though awful things happened to her, I didn't feel bad at all and actually couldn't stop myself from constantly judging her for all the stupid choices she made.

message 16: by [deleted user] (new)

You're not alone. I didn't like The Hobbit either, and could not even make it through it. I just gave up.

.•*¨`*•✿ ✿•*¨`*•. Christine .•*¨`*•✿ ✿•*¨`*• wrote: "I'm probably in the minority here, but, I really disliked The Hobbit and forced myself to finish it. I think the writing style just turned me off.

[book:World War Z: An Oral History ..."

message 17: by Nikki (new)

Nikki Day (nikkiday) 50 Shaded of Grey. Hands down the worst book I ever attempted. I only got about a third of the way through.

Disclosure: I didn't read it for all the hype over how erotic it was etc. I simply wandered into the bookstore one day and saw it in the bestsellers and thought the blurb looked interesting (no mention of creepy fetishes haha). Once I realised what I was reading I never opened it again. Not just for the storyline but the horrid writing.

message 18: by Holli (new)

Holli | 30 comments 50 Shades of Grey. A painful read and I had to try three times to get through it. Don't ask me why I made myself read the whole book; I have no idea. The emails between the characters were funny, but the book itself caused me a reading slump it took a long time to get out of.

World War Z is another I didn't enjoy. It was repetitive and dull. Stick to the movie on this one.

message 19: by Paulette (new)

Paulette I can't name a "worst" book I ever read because if it is bad I don't finish the book. I have a lot of books that I could qualify as one of the worst books that I tried to read.

message 20: by John (last edited Jan 27, 2015 06:28AM) (new)

John | 1 comments As a work of fiction and as a work of moral/political philosophy, Atlas Shrugged is without a doubt the worst book I've ever read or attempted to read. It fails on every conceivable level.

message 21: by Michelle (last edited Jan 27, 2015 05:30AM) (new)

Michelle Winchester Nikki and Holli are right. 50 Shades are terrible. Only I read it back when it was just a Twilight fanfiction, so I was ready for it to be bad. There are thousands better fanfiction writers than E.L. James.

message 22: by Elina (new)

Elina | 3 comments If we can call 50 shades of grey a book, then this is the worst ever! It was the one and only I have ever ordered as ebook as I refused to buy it as ... A book.

message 23: by Manda (new)

Manda (bookwenchmanda) | 307 comments Elina, that was the best comment! I started reading 50 Shades a couple of years ago, and stopped after page 7. That was all I needed to know that it would be complete rubbish and not worth the time.

message 24: by Jen (new)

Jen Juniper (jenjuniper) | 9 comments 50 shades of grey is rubbish. Hardly as bold as sold, characters are morons and writing is simply bad. Don't know if I'll ever be able to finish the trilogy and for once I'm not stressed about leaving the story hanging.

message 25: by Margeri (last edited Jan 27, 2015 01:07PM) (new)

Margeri | 17 comments Since I haven't read (and probably never will) the 50 Shades of Gray I cannot agree with you all.

But I must say "Eat, pray, love" and really close second "Gone Girl" urgh, both where hyped up like the best thing since sliced bread and oh they both collapsed like chocolate soufflés as if not made with love and care.

message 26: by Saeed (new)

Saeed The Kite Runner
this book was rated 5 stars by every person I know here on goodreads, but it didn't appeal to be me in any way.I abandoned that book

message 27: by Amy (new)

Amy Stabenow | 21 comments Pretty sure the first book I never finished was Hotel New Hampshire. There have been plenty since then, but at the time it was hard for me to not finish a book. I'm getting much better at it.

message 28: by Katie (new)

Katie (ktmac_1) Emily wrote: "Definitely P.S. I Love You. I thought the writing was horrible."
I have not read that one yet, but Love, Rosie I believe is by the same author and I found it to be a frustrating read.

message 29: by Tanya (new)

Tanya (xallroyx21) | 55 comments A book I hated was A Beautiful Mind. It's a biography, but I just found it boring and I really disliked the man it was about. I threw it against the wall at least once, but I was determined to finish it. The movie was horrible as well. It won the "Best Adapted Screenplay" Oscar and there were sooo many things in the movie that were not in the book. An entire part was made up! I actually may have liked the movie if I had not read the horrid book first.

message 30: by Allie (new)

Allie Emily wrote: "Definitely P.S. I Love You. I thought the writing was horrible."

I'll be reading this for Week 6, and I'm anxious already. I've heard conflicting reviews from people whose opinions I trust, so I don't know what to expect.

message 31: by Barbi (new)

Barbi (bbyb) | 6 comments Volar sobre el pantano by Carlos Cuahtémoc Sánchez. I don't know if it has an English edition but... just don't read it, it's awful. I didn't finish it because I was angry about it. I lost like two dollars on this terrible book.

message 32: by Barbi (new)

Barbi (bbyb) | 6 comments Volar sobre el pantano by Carlos Cuahtémoc Sánchez. I don't know if it has an English edition but... just don't read it, it's awful. I didn't finish it because I was angry about it. I lost like two dollars on this terrible book.

message 33: by Toni (new)

Toni A. Smith (teeatfore) The Coldest Winter Ever by Sister Soulja. My cousin raved about it but I could not relate at all and barely made it to chapter 3 before giving the book away. I have not had that experience since. I absolutely hated this book.

message 34: by EllenZReads (new)

EllenZReads Nikki wrote: "50 Shaded of Grey. Hands down the worst book I ever attempted. I only got about a third of the way through.

Disclosure: I didn't read it for all the hype over how erotic it was etc. I simply wande..."

Ha! I made it literally about 5 paragraphs in...wanted to throw it across the room (except I was at the bookstore and that would have been bad form). The writing was hideous. I read quite a bit of erotica (Anne Rice under a pen name, etc) when I was younger and thought it would be interesting...but it was terrible. I just don't get all the hype!

message 35: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer Barstad (maidenoflight) I can honestly say i've never read a book that I thought was horrible. I guess i'm considered a well read person because I enjoy everything I read.

message 36: by Holli (new)

Holli | 30 comments Books hyped like crazy and I rarely get along. I've started several that have been said to be wonderful by everyone and regretted it. I don't make it far into those books more often than not as they quickly fall flat on me. There have been some exceptions, but they are few and far between. I finally decided if I truly don't like the book after at least 3 chapters, I give up. I put myself into several reading slumps because I made myself read a book I didn't like. 50 Shades and World War Z are among those responsible.

message 37: by Jukka (last edited Jan 28, 2015 12:42AM) (new)

Jukka Särkijärvi (nitessine) | 28 comments For a long time, I considered Baldur's Gate by Philip Athans to be the worst book I'd ever read. The tie-in novel of a licensed computer game – you know nothing good can come out of that equation, right? Not only was the prose stilted, the story was also dull and if it didn't ignore the cool things in the game, it went out of its way to destroy them. For example, in the game, there's an elf wizard named Xan, who's a depressive, cynical pessimist and the owner of a magical moonblade, which are a big deal in the world. In the novel, Xan is a warrior who is noted to not even have a sword, and then his head is bitten off by a giant spider. It felt actively malicious towards the fanbase.

However, last year it was unseated from its position, where it had reigned unchallenged for over ten years! I read James Lovegrove's Redlaw! I received it as a freebie at a science fiction convention, which maybe should've been a clue, but then, they were also giving out Aliette de Bodard novels and she's seven sorts of awesome. Redlaw, though, fails on every conceivable level. On the surface, the prose is stilted and ugly, people talk like nobody ever, and it basically reads like the only person who cared less than the editor was the author himself. On the deep technical level, it is such a clean example of painting by numbers that the only reason I didn't guess the ending was because the final twist was this huge homophobic asspull.

Which brings me to my final problem with the work, which is that it's what Dracula would've been if it was written by Nigel Farage. While twisting the trope of the vampire as the Other into the vampire as an Eastern European immigration problem is kind of clever, the execution is, shall we say, racist. There are bad guys whose sole motivation for being the bad guy is either their sexual orientation or religion.

It pissed me off like no book before or since. I had to read it through out of a sense of car crash curiosity. I had to know.

Once I was through, I recycled it.

message 38: by Alina (new)

Alina | 63 comments I guess I go against the norm too with the popular books. I have my own personal rule that I try to give a book at least 100 pages before I will ditch it. Two that I just couldn't read any more than that were The Goldfinch - oh, the details were excruciating! and The Night Circus - maybe because I hate clowns and the circus!

message 39: by Cris (new)

Cris (cris_lectora) I don't like saying that a book is awful, because oftentimes there's someone who loves is, but The English Patient is one of the few I couldn't finish. To this day, it still bothers me because I loved the movie, but I just couldn't get through it. I found it so boring :(

message 40: by Trisha (new)

Trisha Ann (thebookgasm) Keeping Faith The only thing that kept me up with this is.. I don't know, boredom? So much was spent on irrelevant thoughts. Most of which were undesirably written that made me just want to flip to another page. It's practically a waste of trees.

message 41: by EllenZReads (new)

EllenZReads Trisha wrote: "Keeping Faith The only thing that kept me up with this is.. I don't know, boredom? So much was spent on irrelevant thoughts. Most of which were undesirably written that made me just wa..."

That's one of the few Jodi Picoult novels that I really could NOT get into.

message 42: by Francesca (new)

Francesca | 391 comments I think I've been lucky enough to not read any books that were genuinely bad books (I'm not sure I can really make that judgement call) but there have been a lot of books that I haven't enjoyed. Some of them are very popular books but I just didn't like them.

Jane Eyre bored me and I didn't like the characters. People have said to me that maybe it was because I had to read it for school so maybe I enjoyed it less but I don't think that's the case, I had to read loads of books for school and generally enjoyed the others (especially Of Mice and Men) but Jane Eyre just seemed to plod along and I didn't/don't understand why people romanticise Mr Rochester! The guy was a dick!

Romeo and Juliet I always hated. I generally like Shakespeare and I enjoy a lot of his other works (Much Ado About Nothing, Hamlet, Macbeth) but Romeo and Juliet just seemed ridiculous to me. I couldn't get behind a story about two teenagers (Juliet was 13 and Romeo was 15) that meet, fall in 'love' and kill themselves all in the space of 4 days! It just wasn't the kind of story for me.

I know a lot of people absolutely loved this book but I really couldn't get into it and it was 'The Fault in Our Stars'. I like John Green and I think he's funny but this book just didn't do anything for me. It seemed kind of samey and cliché like so many other books and I didn't like either of the main characters (yes, shock horror, I didn't even like Augustus).

message 43: by Nicole (new)

Nicole All of the 50 Shades of Grey books & all of the Twilight books. I felt like they were written by some lonely desperate women. The male characters in those books are ridiculous, as are the female leads. There's something wrong with any woman who has a fantasy of being with someone like Christian or Edward. How did these books get published!

message 44: by Zaz, Mood Minion (last edited Jan 30, 2015 03:39PM) (new)

Zaz | 1387 comments Mod
Nicole, a vampire who twinkles in the sun (and doesn't drink people's blood) is obviously the most perfect boyfriend ever :p
I didn't read the books because the movies are so cliché and the characters annoying, so I don't know which ones are the worst :p

message 45: by Biana (new)

Biana Okay...I'm so ready to bash a couple of books. Oddly enough, they came highly recommended.

The first is Fahrenheit 451. It wasn't that the writing was horrific but more that I was angry that a society could get to that point. It stirred so much anger in me that I still haven't finished the book. I'm kind of thinking that I will use that book for challenge book 52.

The second is A Visit from the Goon Squad. I had several friends tell me that they loved this book, it's rated well on Amazon and Goodreads, and it was on some top sellers list. A Buzzfeed book article even said it was a must read of the year. I hated it. HATED IT. It's not chronological, it's written from too many viewpoints, the style changes dramatically from chapter to chapter, there was a vast array of pointless information...all in all I thought it had too many variables.

Now please understand that I grasp the whole Different Strokes for Different Folks thing. And I hope that people did like these books. I'm just saying that I ended up not finding them enjoyable.

message 46: by Manda (new)

Manda (bookwenchmanda) | 307 comments Biana, I agree about Goon Squad. I read it earlier this month and it was awful! The viewpoints got annoying, especially when you got to the end and realized this story was primarily about two people and you have no idea what happened to them between then and now.

message 47: by Tammy (new)

Tammy I just had to start an "Abandoned" shelf for Episodes: My Life As I See It. I couldn't finish it.

message 48: by Guy (new)

Guy | 37 comments Interesting topic. I read the list up to this point with curiosity and some trepidation fearing that some book I really loved would be on it. The only book I might stick up for is Hotel New Hampshire. I read it quite a while ago and I seem to recall liking it. I have Visit to the Goon Squad on my to read list and may have to rethink that. There are a number of books - many well-regarded - that I have tried to read and simply could not. Not because they were bad necessarily but they just did not engage me. My nomination for this topic is Snuff by Chuck Palahniuk. Very highly rated writer whom I had never read and I happened to see this particular title at the library so I took it home and read it. Mercifully it was short. But really awful. My time would have been better spent performing a do-it-yourself root canal.

message 49: by Charity (new)

Charity (faeryrebel78) Biana I felt the same way about the Goon Squad. I rarely abandon books but that was one that I abandoned. I couldn't get into it at all.

message 50: by Chelle (last edited Jan 30, 2015 11:18AM) (new)

Chelle (MaleficentBookDragon) (chellerydz) An Apple for Zoe by Thomas Amo An Apple For Zoë (The Forsaken, #1) by Thomas Amo I do not understand the 4 and 5 star reviews of this book. It was awful.
The idea and premise are great. I was intrigued by the description. I even really want to know know what happens next, but cannot face two more books of the terrible writing. There are so many things wrong with this book.
It is disjointed, there is no character development, and I have a really hard time believing the police and FBI work that way. You don't know know who is talking half the time, and the dialogue is unbelievable. Plus, it ends abruptly with no resolutions.
It is like a thirteen-year old boy wrote it. I was VERY disappointed.
This book had a lot of potential, but failed miserably for me. I gave it two stars because the idea is very interesting and I did complete the book.

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