The Next Best Book Club discussion

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Book Related Banter > Short Reader Survey, please!

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message 1: by Dani (last edited Jan 27, 2011 01:15PM) (new)

Dani (The Pluviophile Writer) (pluviophilewriter) | 237 comments GENDER:
(F)
AGE:


18-30

1) Do you enjoy novels with unlikable characters? Yes

1b) If yes, what interests you about them?
Getting inside the head of someone who doesn't think like you. It's extremely intriguing.

2) Disturbing Content: Off-Putting, or Intriguing? Do you run like you've just seen a ghost, or watch it like a train wreck, wondering what could possibly happen next?

Intriguing, I think with out distrubing books we wouldn't be able to fully see our own reality or recognize certain aspects of horror, terror or suffering. Most of them are meant to awake our sense of reality. I'm usually wondering what will happen next but sometimes it is more like awaiting a train wreck.

3) Please give character and book title for each question below as a point of reference:

3a) Who are some of your favorite unlikable characters of all time.

Alex from A Clockwork Orange
Mr. Hyde from Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde
Dracula from Dracula
King Richard from The Tragedy of King Richard III
Ben from The Fifth Child
Sula from Sula

What books with disturbing content were you unable to put down?

A Clockwork Orange - Rape scenes
Lucky - Rape scenes
Needful Things - Young child commits suicide

3b) Likewise, which characters, unlikable or otherwise, were so off-putting it stopped you finishing the book?

I can't recall any novel that I've read that ever turned me away and made me stop reading with distrubing content but I do remember being quite bothered after reading The Fifth Child. The whole story was on the verge of being too real yet absolutely horrific too.

What books were so damn sweet they gave you a toothache, and all you could do was roll your eyes and reach for the ambesol?

The Chronicles of Narnia and the only romance book I've ever read Whitney, My Love. I wanted to gag with the gushy scenes. In saying that it also had a very disturbing rape scene and relationship.

4) If you had to choose between a gritty read and fluffy read, what is your choice:
Gritty

5) Anything else you'd like to add on the subject? Please only answer if you are willing to be quoted, the rest of the survey is anonymous.

Feel free to use anything I've written as a quote. This was a interesting topic and one worth looking at.


message 2: by Catie (new)

Catie (nematome) GENDER: F, AGE: 18-30

1) Do you enjoy novels with unlikable characters? Yes.

1b) If yes, what interests you about them? I agree very much with the person above who said that it's intriguing to be in the mind of someone very different from you. Above that, I think that all people are flawed and when a character is too perfect, the world that a book is attempting to create becomes too unrealistic, to the point where I can't buy into it.

2) Disturbing Content: Off-Putting, or Intriguing? Do you run like you've just seen a ghost, or watch it like a train wreck, wondering what could possibly happen next? I think that disturbing content is fine when it's a genuine part of a story. Life is disturbing sometimes and to gloss over that smacks of dishonesty to me. On the other hand, I don't usually appreciate it when it's used for no real purpose.

3) Please give character and book title for each question below as a point of reference:

3a) Who are some of your favorite unlikable characters of all time?

Jacob Cullen, As Meat Loves Salt
Albert "Mister", The Color Purple
Edmund Dantes, The Count of Monte Cristo
Dorian Gray, The Picture of Dorian Gray
Raskolnikov, Crime and Punishment
Grady Tripp, Wonder Boys

What books with disturbing content were you unable to put down?

Black Boy
Never Let Me Go
The Handmaid's Tale
Pretty much all of Bret Easton Ellis's work.


3b) Likewise, which characters, unlikable or otherwise, were so off-putting it stopped you finishing the book? What books were so damn sweet they gave you a toothache, and all you could do was roll your eyes and reach for the ambesol?

I almost couldn't get through American Psycho. I started to get a sick feeling everytime Patrick Bateman would get close to killing again. I just barely made it through that one.

As for the toothache inducing characters, there are too many. I feel like this is a common trait of many characters in YA books, which is just insulting to teenagers, in my opinion. A good example is one I recently read, The Healer's Apprentice.

4) If you had to choose between a gritty read and fluffy read, what is your choice:
a) Gritty
b) Fluffy
c) Can't choose, I like both


Most of the time I will choose gritty, but I do enjoy a fluffy read every once in a while...so I guess I pick c).


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