Friday, April 18, 2008

Books You Love that Everyone Else Hates

All right. So we've heard about books you don't like, books that it seems other people love. And yet, we got quite a few votes for What's Up With Virginia Woolf?, Catcher in the Rye should have played Second Base, and Rainbow Fish: Fun Ways to Sautee Seafood. Also, WriterKat suggested that copies of A Christmas Carol should be pre-packaged with barf bags. Fair enough.

The new topic is - what are books you love that everyone else hates? These are the titles which elicit eye-rolls, fake gagging sounds, and references to the fact that said title permanently scarred most of those who had to read it in high school. (Of course, you were the one who secretly stole your school's copy of that title, reading and re-reading it well into college, and presenting your first born child with a leather copy of it upon his birth.)

I'll go first.

Jude the Obscure by Thomas Hardy
Moby Dick by Herman Melville
Le Petit Prince by Antoine de St.-Exupery

OH! And don't forget!!

Ello's running a Make-the-Pig-Laugh contest! Now! Today! This weekend! Go here for details.


  1. Psst...JUDE THE OBSCURE is by Thomas Hardy. I'm sure you were just thinking Flaubert because of the Bovary comment. ;)

  2. Precie, Yeah - thanks, I knew that. I had to compare Tess of the D'Urbervilles and Mme Bovary for my senior thesis, and then throwing in Jude...blegh.

    I love intelligent friends!!!!

  3. Merchant of Venice - anything Shakespeare really, but this one doesn't get enough play and when we had to read it in high school, I adored it while everyone else groaned... I also love Taming of the Shrew, which a lot of my female friends thought was sexist, but I really saw the whole story line differently, as a partnership of the time, not a subservience thing...

    I don't think there's a lot of other ones that everyone hated, though I do like me some snack books that my more literary friends aren't too fond of.

  4. I agree with Merry: anything Shakespeare, including the sonnets. I also really like Tess. And I love Huck Finn, though I'm not sure it qualifies as something everyone else hates.

    As for modern books... Now that I can choose my own, I don't really read books that everyone else hates.

  5. This is bound to get me into trouble, but anything Cormac McCarthy. He depresses me so much I can't read more than a couple of chapters.

  6. The Cold Six Thousand by James Ellroy. That one got panned by all the critics, but I liked it.

  7. hmmmmmm - you know I'm so egotistical that if I like it I just assume that it can't be disliked by others.

    I absolutely hated Moby Dick and the Little Prince but I think it is because similar to Life of Pi, it is written in such away to make my small little brain spin about. But I am a great fan of Stephen King and will read just about anything he writes. Does that count? I'm still sitting here wracking my little brain. I did like Taming of the Shrew and Merchant of Venice. Hmmmm, what else... Geeze nothing else comes to mind. I must have really plebian tastes.

  8. You know, I hated Moby Dick when I first tried it, in high school... I thought it was too dry. But I read it again a few years ago and adored it - I think some things just have to hit you at the right age... Like I said with On the Road, I might have liked it if I read it when I was younger - then again, I hated Catcher in high school and I tried it again in my late twenties and actually hated it worse.

    I think most people like Huck Finn, but Mark Twain is one of my all time favorites ever!!! I adore everything I've ever read by him and whenever I get frustrated with the 'show don't tell' rule, I page open the first chapter of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer - when an author can, on the first page of a novel, make you actually form your mouth in a pucker and whistle while reading - they're flippin amazing.

  9. I loved Lord of the Flies, which was one of our texts for Grade 11, if I remember correctly. Virtually everone despised it, except for a few of us who believe that the world actually works this way. And when I still worked at the bookshop, I would recommend Will Self's The Quantity Theory of Insanity to people and get strange looks from my colleagues.

  10. Shut up! Jude the Obscure is also one of my secret favorites. It tortured me to read it, but I loved reading it all the same. Another brilliantly written novel that ruined me in the same fashion was The Violent Bear It Away by Flannery O'Connor.

  11. Oh, and I forgot to mention that I love The Grapes of Wrath too. Shhhh - don't tell...

  12. I'm afraid I've become quite infamous for hating the books that everyone loves.

    *waves to Precie*



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