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Topic: Books that seemed great at the time but now seem...

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Subject: Books that seemed great at the time but now seem...
Date Posted: 1/7/2009 5:17 PM ET
Member Since: 12/29/2008
Posts: 56
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..kinda like crap. Like, "what did I think was so great about this?"  Nothing you'd ban or angrily bash--just stuff you personally liked before when you were younger, less wiser,  but now you'd laugh about.

Right off the bat: Flowers in the Attic. When I was 14, I thought it was the end-all, be-all of books. Ditto with Petals in the Wind.

Last Edited on: 1/7/09 5:22 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/7/2009 9:16 PM ET
Member Since: 4/16/2008
Posts: 576
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I read Flowers in the Attic when I was 14 too lol! Its one that I would never read now though.

When I read Confessions of The Ugly Step Sister the first time I really enjoyed it. I tried to re read it again a few years later and just couldn't for some reason. I don't know why but I was looking at it and wondering why I even read it in the first place. I guess that just goes to show how tastes change!

Date Posted: 1/8/2009 5:36 AM ET
Member Since: 5/18/2007
Posts: 13,223
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Hey, I'm right there with you on Flowers in the Attic. I religiously read them all and a couple series' after that. I could never read it again however.

The other thing is anything by Danielle Steele. I used to read her all the time too way back when and now I wonder what I ever saw in the constant repitition of her plots/characters. I thought her book Palomino was to die for! lol

Date Posted: 1/8/2009 11:24 AM ET
Member Since: 7/13/2005
Posts: 5,201
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I totally agree with Susan about Danielle Steele - same book, over and over, just changed the names & a few details.

Another author I fell out of love ith was Leon Uris (Exodus, Topaz, QB VII were a couple of his books made into movies).  I used to think they were just the be-all and end-all, then I tried to reread one called Trinity in preparation for reading its sequel, and I realized, I don't like his stuff at all anymore.  Never did finish rereading Trinity and didn't read the sequel (called Redemption).  I do however have his last book in my TBR pile, more due to morbid curiousity because it was published after he died.


Date Posted: 1/8/2009 2:06 PM ET
Member Since: 4/19/2006
Posts: 21,045
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I agree about Danielle Steel.

I would say Outlander by Diana Galbaldon.  Loved it and the series when I read it the first time. I tried to reread it last year and just couldn't get into it.

Date Posted: 1/8/2009 5:30 PM ET
Member Since: 8/24/2007
Posts: 117
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Oh goodness, another author who does the repitition thing is Dean Koontz - he writes well, but it's the same old, same old!

Matt C. (mattc) - ,
Date Posted: 1/8/2009 8:09 PM ET
Member Since: 8/13/2008
Posts: 3,849
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I really liked Isaac Asimov's robot novels when I was younger (high school aged) but looking back I have no desire whatsoever to reread them.

Date Posted: 1/9/2009 10:24 AM ET
Member Since: 1/7/2009
Posts: 3
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Anything by Johanna Lindsey, I used to read everything she wrote, now I just want to smack the Heroes!

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 1/17/2009 5:11 AM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
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I'm the same about Leon Uris.  Lordy, I'd loved and re-read Exodus more than once.  Thought QB VII was terrific.  Then I got to Trinity and struggled and struggled so much with Redemption I couldn't finish it!  I also have his last in my TBR pile.  I somehow keep expecting Exodus I think.

Date Posted: 1/23/2009 8:49 PM ET
Member Since: 10/3/2007
Posts: 119
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all those coming of age books i read in high school. not even the classics either, i still love those (chocolate war is definitely still one of my favorites), but the cheap knock offs. mostly the books mtv put out. some of them are worthwhile, but most of them are crap. nice thread, never really thought about that before. =)

Date Posted: 1/24/2009 3:51 AM ET
Member Since: 10/3/2006
Posts: 6,234
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Gone With the Wind was a massive, heart-pounding, historical love story to me when I first read it, at age 13.  Today - it's really nothing more than an enormous, manipulative, co-dependant, let-down. 


Date Posted: 1/24/2009 11:38 PM ET
Member Since: 8/6/2007
Posts: 9
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I loved Twilight when I first read it, awhile back before the current craze began.  When I heard that it was being made into a movie and that girls across the country were going insane about it, I dug the books out and read the first two again.  And I thought to myself... oh dear gods, THIS is what teenagers are holding up as the example of the best relationship ever dreamed of?  They know each other for about three weeks, literally, then suddenly they're so deeply soul mated that when the love of her life -- by "life" I mean less than a year -- leaves, Bella pretty much stops living and only chooses not to kill herself because she's just so selfless that she wouldn't want her parents to be upset.  And this is portrayed as highly romantic and oh swoon!  Then we have Edward, co-dependant psychotic who literally LOCKS HER UP, takes the engine out of her car to stop her from going anywhere, and leaves her under a guard when he's gone for a few days.  Hello, can we say abusive relationship?  Is this really what we want to teach teenage girls about how your true love should act?  It's terrifying.


I have no idea why I didn't notice any of this the first time I read it.  I guess at the time it was pretty much unknown, so I wasn't thinking in terms of how crazy popular it is and what it's teaching all the young girls who are reading it and learning that it's okay for your boyfriend to lock you in your room and disassemble your car, as long as he tells you that it's because he really loves you and wants you to be safe.



Date Posted: 1/25/2009 10:42 AM ET
Member Since: 6/4/2006
Posts: 516
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This thread is bringing back a lot of memories.  I had jaw surgery when I was 14 and was off school for two weeks.  Not being much of a TV watcher, I mostly read Danielle Steel books that I had purchased in secret and hid from my mom.  Each day, as soon as she left the house, I would dig out my DS book and read until she came home.  I don’t know why I hid them from her? I don’t think she would have minded me reading them.  I will still occasionally read a Danielle Steel book but her new ones are just not good.  The old ones, while much better than the new ones are basically the same story over and over again.  I still have never read Waunderlust, which I hear is good.


I also read a lot of V.C. Andrews when I was a teenager.  I didn’t hide these books from my mom and looking back, they were much more raunchier than Danielle Steel.  I recently re-read Heaven and Flowers in the Attic and boy were they cheesy.  It was fun to relive memories from childhood.  Anyone else re-read a book and have it give you memories of what was going on in life when you first read it?

Date Posted: 1/25/2009 12:05 PM ET
Member Since: 4/18/2008
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Susan W.  The other thing is anything by Danielle Steele. I used to read her all the time too way back when and now I wonder what I ever saw in the constant repitition of her plots/characters. I thought her book Palomino was to die for! lol

I could have written this word for word, including the part about Palomino!!

I suspect that if I tried to read MARJORIE MORNINGSTAR today, that I would gag!!!  But it was sometihing when I was  Junior in High School!

Date Posted: 1/25/2009 6:36 PM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2008
Posts: 115
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I read all the Ian Fleming books in high school because they were considerably more informative about S*E*X* than most thing available in the 60's.  Now all kids have to do for information about sex is watch tv.  :-)

Date Posted: 1/26/2009 10:28 AM ET
Member Since: 8/3/2008
Posts: 87
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"I also read a lot of V.C. Andrews when I was a teenager.  I didn’t hide these books from my mom and looking back, they were much more raunchier than Danielle Steel. "

Ha, ha, you brought back a sudden memory from when I was a pre-teen or early teen and my mom was trying to stop me from checking out V.C. Andrews books because they were from the horror section of the library.  I said, "No, Mom, it's not gore, it's just incest!"

Date Posted: 1/27/2009 9:48 AM ET
Member Since: 8/20/2006
Posts: 1,930
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Jenni - I couldn't agree more with your summation of Twilight!

Nora Roberts . . . my MIL gave me two of her books about 10 years ago. I read one, thought it was okay, nothing great. Started reading the second one and about half way through I realized it was nearly identical to the first book except for the location and names of the characters. I've not picked up another one since. Beware of authors that churn out 2-3 books a year.

Date Posted: 1/28/2009 11:13 AM ET
Member Since: 7/9/2008
Posts: 844
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Last Edited on: 2/1/15 2:43 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 1/28/2009 4:01 PM ET
Member Since: 9/21/2006
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danielle steele, nora roberts , sandra brown, james patterson, vc andrews, grisham

all the same story just different names and locals

i quit reading their books about 5 years ago when i found historical fiction.

Last Edited on: 1/28/09 4:02 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/29/2009 9:25 AM ET
Member Since: 9/20/2006
Posts: 25
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Nora Roberts, Johanna Lindsey, Jayne Ann Krentz,  just about all my favorite authors are writing the same old, same old.   And all this paranormal crap - enough already!

Date Posted: 1/29/2009 11:51 AM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2008
Posts: 115
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As I was "getting over" my Danielle Steele et. al. phase (it took awhile, I'm embarrassed to admit!), I got to noticing her "run-on" sentences (that's the school teacher in me I guess) and I found one, I wish I'd written down what book it was in, that went on for a page and a half..just one sentence!  And it went from locking gazes across a crowded room to his thrusting manhood to lying spent in his arms.  I'm ad-libbing here, but basically it was an entire seduction in one sentence.   So, compared to Stephanie Meyer's 3 weeks to fall madly in love forever, hey, who needs realism?  I think it is just a phase we women all go through.  I agree with Jenni K. about the whole abusive relationship thing being a cause for concern, but it is certainly nothing new in chick lit...from Bronte's brooding Heathcliffe to Meyer's brooding Edward, most of us at least went through some fantasies about capturing the heart and possibly reforming some dark, handsome, tortured outlaw.  That's the beauty of books, you can do it on paper and get over it. 

Date Posted: 1/29/2009 11:57 AM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2008
Posts: 115
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By the way, Jenni K., I don't mean to make light of your concern about how stories like this in our culture do sometimes wrongly influence young, impressionable girls.  I was just saying that, for those of us fortunate enough to be surrounded by good role models of relationships in our families and friends, books can let us indulge our curiousity and fantasy without getting hurt.  Unfortunately, there are so many girls out there who don't have those things, and these are the ones who might be influenced to confuse fiction with reality. 

Subject: I'm SOOOO over....
Date Posted: 1/31/2009 1:29 PM ET
Member Since: 2/21/2007
Posts: 3
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THIS is a fun thread!  I hadn't even thought about this, but here goes...

Janet Evanovich -- her Stephanie Plum series is funny, but I got seriously bored after a few books of the "same old...same old"

Nora Roberts -- her romance novels only.  I do still enjoy her as J.D. Robb

I got over Danielle Steel a long, long time ago (actually decades ago).  And it's really nice to see that I am not the only one. 


Date Posted: 1/31/2009 10:27 PM ET
Member Since: 11/24/2005
Posts: 40
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I know it's a "classic," but I'm pretty sure The Catcher in the Rye ceases to be entertaining after the age of seventeen. ;)

Date Posted: 2/2/2009 1:05 AM ET
Member Since: 1/12/2009
Posts: 387
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I really enjoy the Stephanie Plum books, but the arc of the main character has been stalled since about book 9 and that makes the books a little harder to read for that purpose.  They are still funny for gun happy Grandma Mazure though and Lulu.

I thought the Twilight books were really fun when I read them.  They were certainly addicting, I read the series in the 4 days, but after Breaking Dawn one of the worst books I ever read, I definitely realized a bunch of flaws.   The movie(s) is actually an improvement over the book and I never think that.