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Topic: 6 worst books you've read this year

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Subject: 6 worst books you've read this year
Date Posted: 7/12/2008 5:34 PM ET
Member Since: 8/1/2007
Posts: 965
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I wanted to do the opposite of the 6 fave books to date since I've had a few disappointments this year. Here's mine so far:

1. Sunshine - Robin McKinley (didn't think there was such a thing as a slow vamp story)

2. Jane Austen Book Club - Karen Joy Fowler (blech!)

3. Atonement - Ian McEwen (::::yawn:::)

4. Across The Nightingale Floor - Lian Hearn (it had so much potential)

5. The Constant Princess - Philippa Gregory (what a disappointment!)

6. Enchanted Erotic Bedtime Stories - Nancy Madore


Last Edited on: 7/12/08 7:39 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 7/12/2008 6:25 PM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2007
Posts: 2,024
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It's July. You should ask that in Dec.

Date Posted: 7/12/2008 7:46 PM ET
Member Since: 8/1/2007
Posts: 965
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It's July. You should ask that in Dec.

Did you not see the Fave thread started in July? This is for worst books so far. I  for one certainly appreciate hearing opinions about bad books before the end of the year. Credits are just too precious to be spending them on boring books. ;-)

Date Posted: 7/12/2008 8:39 PM ET
Member Since: 7/31/2006
Posts: 14,634
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I looked back over my 'log' of books read/listened to and there were only 2 that I finished and didn't like

1) rawhide man - diana palmer

2) whirlwind courtship - jayne ann krentz

both of these are older romances from the 80s or so with a jerky guy :-(  The guy in Rawhide Man was terrible..I wish that woman had kicked his you-know-what..


Date Posted: 7/12/2008 8:49 PM ET
Member Since: 3/31/2006
Posts: 28,535
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Leticia, great thread!  Here's the worst for me so far this year:

A Recipe for Bees--Gail Anderson-Dargatz

I Was Amelia Earhart--Jane Mendelsohn

Dreaming in Cuban--Cristina Garcia

Sula--Toni Morrison

Fourth Queen--Debbie Taylor

City of Darkness, City of Light--Marge Piercy

Some of these were "eh"...take it or leave it books.

Date Posted: 7/12/2008 9:31 PM ET
Member Since: 6/28/2007
Posts: 2,768
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I usually stick with a book whether it is good or bad...as I get older I think I've been wasting too much time on that with wishful thinking.  So this year I've decided if I'm not too into it I'm moving on to something else. 

Here are two so far I just COULD NOT get thru:

The Secret Life of Bees---what's the big deal with everyone about this one?  blech!/yawn!

River, Cross My Heart---yawn!

This next one I say is a disappointment b/c the ending was terrible.  I guess b/c there wasn't really an "ending".

Family History by Dani Shapiro----everyone seems to like it, it had potential but was such a let down.

Date Posted: 7/12/2008 11:51 PM ET
Member Since: 6/19/2007
Posts: 5,931
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I've had good luck this year, no real clunkers, none that I didn't make it through.  However there are 3 that I didn't enjoy and wouldn't recommend to anyone, the ones I liked least would have to be:

The Film Club by David Gilmour- had so much potential but was really self-indulgent, I didn't learn anything about film, parenting or what the author's point was

The Case for a Creator by Lee Strobel- used nothing but circular logic, poorly informed sources and was pretty boring to boot

Dexter in the Dark by Jeff Lindsay- I loved the first two Dexter novels, this one just got strange and the character was acting totally... out of character.  Hope the next one is better.


Date Posted: 7/13/2008 1:17 AM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2007
Posts: 8,411
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Here are a couple of stinkers for me:

Dark at the Roots: A Memoir :: Sarah Thyre (I didn't even finish it- kinda creepy)

One Perfect Day: The Selling of the American Wedding :: Rebecca Mead (boring!)

Date Posted: 7/13/2008 1:54 AM ET
Member Since: 8/11/2007
Posts: 1,807
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I've had a couple of bad ones this year too:

Season of the Machete by James Patterson (one of his older books)

By Hook or By Book by D. R. Meredith  - the story line is OK but I can't deal with the main character being referred to as "short and cute"  throughout the entire book.  Not sure why repeating this over and over and over again adds meaning to the book .  Just annoyed the living you know what out of me.  :)

Date Posted: 7/13/2008 3:43 AM ET
Member Since: 3/31/2006
Posts: 28,535
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I just posted to this thread only it isn't here which means people are going to find a really off the wall post somewhere!  LOL  Ooops!

I forgot to add "The Binding Chair" which was absolutely awful.  I dumped it after 30 pages.

Date Posted: 7/13/2008 6:25 PM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2006
Posts: 6,633
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I love three of the books on your list, Leticia. 

For me, it's probably:

  1. What the Dead Know, Laura Lippman (didn't finish it)
  2. White Ghost Girls, Alice Greenway (the idea was good, the book was soo boring, even though it was short)
  3. Specials, Scott Westerfeld (I didn't like it as much as I did Pretties and Uglies, and I was glad to let it go)
  4. Glass Houses, Rachel Caine (I didn't like this as much as everyone else seems to.  I'm waiting for the library to get the second book and I'll give it a shot, but I really disliked the main character from page 1 and I couldn't really care about how smart she was supposed to be)
Date Posted: 7/13/2008 8:16 PM ET
Member Since: 5/19/2007
Posts: 4,726
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I love seeing what other people hated (or loved)...here are mine:

1.  The Last American Man, Elizabeth Gilbert (irritating as hell)

2.  Mercy, Jodi Picoult (I love some of her books..this one was hard to finish)

3.  The Lost Painting, Jonathan Harr (I love art, I love Caravaggio...I hated this book.  Boring!)

4.  Shiver, Lisa Jackson (Audio...just eh.  Borderline stupid)

Date Posted: 7/13/2008 8:17 PM ET
Member Since: 5/19/2007
Posts: 4,726
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Melody...I agree with Binding Chair.  I didn't finish it either.

Date Posted: 7/13/2008 8:26 PM ET
Member Since: 8/1/2007
Posts: 965
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I love three of the books on your list, Leticia.

Which ones Britney? I think with the exception of The Jane Austen Book Club and Erotic Bedtime Stories which were pointless IMO, there were things that I liked about the others but overall was disappointed in the book. All of the books on my list took me much longer to finish than most books I read. I also need to learn to just stop reading a book I'm not enjoying rather than forcing myself to finish it.

Date Posted: 7/13/2008 8:36 PM ET
Member Since: 4/7/2007
Posts: 2,027
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Most of the books that I have started this year, but haven't finished have just been boring to me and I quit after about 10 pages.  Two that invested more time in were People of the Book by Geraldyne (sp?) Brooks and Then We Came to the End by Joshua Ferris.

Date Posted: 7/13/2008 8:37 PM ET
Member Since: 1/18/2007
Posts: 530
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The Friday Night knitting Club  (Yawn)

Cooking Up Murder    (Another yawn, which surprised me because I love cozy mysteries.)

Sofie Metropolis ( Ithought these would be a bit Plumish but I just found them yuck)

The Appeal by John Grisham.  I usually like him but found this one hard.

My Enemy's Cradle by Sara Young. Another yawn.

Love Over Scotland by Alexander McCall Smith. ( This sounded so good but I couldn't finish it)


Date Posted: 7/17/2008 6:36 AM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2006
Posts: 6,633
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Sunshine, Atonement, and Across the Nightingale Floor.  But I guess the only one that I loved and didn't find hard to read was the last one.  Sunshine does have a lot of slower parts, and I hated reading the second section of Atonement, but I liked the rest of it and I loved how the story ended.

Date Posted: 7/17/2008 8:27 AM ET
Member Since: 1/31/2006
Posts: 1,405
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Change of Heart by Jodi Picoult - my first book of hers and it just didn't appeal at all

Never Seduce a Scoundrel by Sabrina James - I love historical romances, but this is the type that give the genre a bad name

Wolf at the Table by Augusten Burroughs - self-serving crap

Date Posted: 7/17/2008 9:04 AM ET
Member Since: 3/12/2007
Posts: 28
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Date Posted: 7/17/2008 2:09 PM ET
Member Since: 7/1/2008
Posts: 2,835
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Brad Meltzer's The Book of Fate.  I bought this at Borders cheap (last year's remaindered hard back). Masonic conspiracy theory thriller. I don't like the writing or the characters...and it is simply not believable. I felt compelled to finish it though it's probably a waste of time. May send it to my heavily masonic brother  later, he will probably enjoy being outraged. I don't mind reading well written conspiracy theory, even stuff having George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Pierre L'Enfant designing Washington, DC, as a door to Satan for the antiChrist to come through because they are Freemasons. I don't mind farfetched plots, but I want the characters to be believable and at least some of them to be likeable. I have read nothing so awful and improbable since I tried to read Gifford's Assassini last summer.

Jonathan Coe's What a Carve Up. I could not finish it. It promised to be very interesting, but I didn't like anyone. I am no prude, but I felt grimy reading it. Voyeurs creep me out.

I like Marion Zimmer Bradley a lot, but I could not finish The Fall of Atlantis.

I really liked John Scalzi's first 2 in a trilogy, Old Man's War and The Ghost Brigades, but the third, The Last Colony, wasn't anywhere near as good.

Otherwise, I have been very lucky. all the rest have been good to great.

Date Posted: 7/17/2008 11:08 PM ET
Member Since: 4/10/2008
Posts: 246
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90 Minutes In Heaven by Don Piper (awful!)

Confessions of a Shopaholic (I wanted to strangle Becky Bloomwood..)

The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards (boringgggg).

She's Come Undone by Wally Lamb (unlikeable main character)

Stranger in Paradise by Eileen Goudge (yawn)


Date Posted: 7/19/2008 8:53 AM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 1,131
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Hated The Friday Night Knitting Club , made it through almost 100 pages waiting for something interesting to happen. 


Date Posted: 7/19/2008 11:49 AM ET
Member Since: 5/4/2008
Posts: 364
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Can I count The Year of Fog six times?  It really was that bad...it was actually worse that bad.  :)

Date Posted: 7/19/2008 7:50 PM ET
Member Since: 3/15/2008
Posts: 411
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Thankfully we have Paperback swap, so our worst reads can become someone else's favorites. So far this year I've been unimpressed with:

Wicked, Gregory Maguire (Fantasy: Politics and the Wizard of Oz...yawn)

3rd Degree, James Patterson (Mystery: formulaic, which could be okay, but  uninvolving - not okay. )

Rosemary for Remembrance, Audrey Stallsmith (Mystery: the woman was a doormat)

Headstone City, Tom Piccirilli (Fantasy/Horror: I see dead people, and I want to be a Mafia hit man...)

The Stonehenge Gate, Jack Williamson (SF: hmmm...can't sum it up in one sentence...just didn't jell for me)

Date Posted: 7/19/2008 9:38 PM ET
Member Since: 8/30/2007
Posts: 3,237
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A few of this year's baddies:

The Witching Hour by Anne Rice (tedious, lots of atmosphere that went nowhere)

The Relic by Lincoln Childs (so boring I can't even remember what it was supposed to be about)

Snow Flower and the Secret Fan (when they started talking about footbinding, I was outta there)

Firebird by Mercedes Lackey (I should have known better than to go outside my genre comfort zone!)

The Shadow of the WInd by Carlos Ruiz Zafon (I can't remember if I finished this or not, that's how compelling it was)


Vicky, I really enjoyed The Lost Painting! Go figure. ;-)