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Most Boring Book on the Planet? - Page 2

post #21 of 202
Thread Starter 
Shameful confession time: I'm an English teacher.

I hate almost all American literature except for two types of writers: the freaks and the geeks.

Freaks: Poe, Whitman, Dickinson
Geeks: Dickinson, Hawthorne

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kristine
Nearly everything I had to read in American Lit. minus the opulent Great Gatsby. I shall single out The Grapes of Wrath as the most dull book I've ever had the misfortune of setting my eyes upon.
post #22 of 202
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by wildmonkeys
I hated - The Old Man and the Sea - I know people loved it but I hate boats & fishing and it just made me want to scream....
Ugh, me too. Who the hell CARES!!??? He kills a fish! Big deal! Macho grap.
post #23 of 202
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kristine
On the other hand, Joyce's Ulysses I'm still having a difficult time with after a decade and wonder if I'll ever get through it with any understanding whatsoever, much to the chagrin of the rabid Joyce fans that I know. :LOL

I never even attempted it. :

For those of you who are real gluttons for punishment and aren't familiar with Joyce, here's the opening of Finnegans Wake (no, I didn't forget the apostrophe; it comes that way).

riverrun, past Eve and Adam's, from swerve of shore to bend
of bay, brings us by a commodius vicus of recirculation back to Howth Castle and Environs.
Sir Tristram, violer d'amores, fr'over the short sea, had passencore rearrived from North Armorica on this side the scraggy isthmus of Europe Minor to wielderfight his penisolate war: nor had topsawyer's rocks by the stream Oconee exaggerated themselse to Laurens County's gorgios while they went doublin their mumper all the time: nor avoice from afire bellowsed mishe mishe to tauftauf thuartpeatrick: not yet, though venissoon after, had a kidscad buttended a bland old isaac: not yet, though all's fair in vanessy, were sosie sesthers wroth with twone nathandjoe. Rot a peck of pa's malt had Jhem or Shen brewed by arclight and rory end to the regginbrow was to be seen ringsome on the aquaface.
The fall (bababadalgharaghtakamminarronnkonnbronntonnerronn tuonnthunntrovarrhounawnskawntoohoohoordenenthurnu k!) of a once wallstrait oldparr is retaled early in bed and later on life down through all christian minstrelsy. The great fall of theoffwall entailed at such short notice the pftjschute of Finnegan, erse solid man, that the humptyhillhead of humself prumptly sends an unquiring one well to the west in quest of his tumptytumtoes: and their upturnpikepointandplace is at the knock out in the park where oranges have been laid to rust upon the green since devlinsfirst loved livvy.
post #24 of 202
Ethan Frome- Edith Wharton...hated it and this was at least 15 years ago and I still remember how much I hated it!
post #25 of 202
I (like a alot of you ) can and will read anything. I've only come across one book that I was unable to finish and that was a lame-o paperback my dh had. When we were dating I stayed at his place often and was bored one day while he was at work so scrounged through his book collection. There was a small novel called Ice Station Zebra and since I had a couple hours to kill I thought it would do. Oh. My. Word. 10 years later and I still get annoyed by it. I couldn't finish it. I got rid of it when we moved in together since it was always around taunting me.

I found out later it was also a movie haven't watched it either.
post #26 of 202
Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles Baudelaire
I never even attempted it. : For those of you who are real gluttons for punishment and aren't familiar with Joyce, ...


FYI, the works of James Joyce were banned on most college campuses in America in the early twentieth century. His writings were considered obscene. Graduate students would pass his books around the dormitories and eagerly read Ulysses, Portrait of a Man..., and Finnegan's Wake.

The copies were all beaten up and ragged. My English professor told me this in my Sophomore year.

Now, no one reads his stuff...

Maybe if we ban them again, they will again be interesting!
post #27 of 202
Gertrude Stein's "The Making of Americans" is intolerable.

I got through 120 pages, and found myself talking like the freaking book.

I did read Ulysses, but I freely admit that I skipped some particularly tedious sections-- it's not good beach reading.
:LOL

ETA: applejuice, anybody willing to work that hard for a little purple writing deserves the reward. :LOL
post #28 of 202
And, in the name of all that's holy, how can anybody think the Grapes of Wrath is boring?

eeeeek!

I read it in the seventh grade and cried my eyeballs out for a week. Maybe I need to start reading Actual Books again instead of MDC.
post #29 of 202
Charles Dickens' Bleak House is by far the most boring to me. My high school AP English Lit teacher assigned it to me my senior year for an individual project as he said that I was the only student he'd known in years who could probably get through it. He changed his mind a week later and assigned me a different book, claiming it was just too mean to make me read such a yawn!
post #30 of 202
I think some of the books people are listing as "boring" were assigned too early in life. There are a number of books I remember being assigned in high school that I didn't particualrly care for, BUT as an adult I truly enjoy. (Anything by Jane Austen comes to mind)

Although it was never assigned, Lord of the Rings is a good example. My folks gave the trilogy to me for X-mas when I was in 7th or 8th grade and I couldn't get through them. I reopened the 1st one last year (some 25 yrs later) and I absolutely devoured them!
post #31 of 202
Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles Baudelaire
Shameful confession time: I'm an English teacher.

I hate almost all American literature except for two types of writers: the freaks and the geeks.

Freaks: Poe, Whitman, Dickinson
Geeks: Dickinson, Hawthorne
Why didn't I have you for an English teacher?!

I adore Poe, and Baudelaire liked him so much he translated his works and helped introduce him to those who would never have heard of him otherwise, as you of all people already know. How I would've loved writing an essay on Poe instead of the others...
post #32 of 202
Thomas Jefferson's Virginia Papers (?), or Writings on Virginia....something of the sort - I have blocked it from my mind because it was sooooo painful...
post #33 of 202
Please don't beat me with sticks and rocks, but.....


















...I HATE anything written by J.R.R. Tolkein. :

And DP is the only other person in the world who agrees with me.
post #34 of 202
Quote:
Originally Posted by eightyferrettoes
And, in the name of all that's holy, how can anybody think the Grapes of Wrath is boring?

eeeeek!

I read it in the seventh grade and cried my eyeballs out for a week. Maybe I need to start reading Actual Books again instead of MDC.
I realize my loathing of these books and American authors sounds strange, but maybe the fact that Oscar Wilde is my absolute favorite author would explain things.

I like the grand, opulent and surreal and those authors who are able to summon up words that evoke certain majestic feelings in the reader. So I lean heavily towards English and French authors.

As an example, Rimbaud's A Season In Hell from which I read:

I got used to elementary hallucinations. I could very precisely see a mosque instead of a factory, a drum corps of angels, horse carts on the highways of the sky, a drawing room at the bottom of a lake; monsters and mysteries. A vaudeville's title filled me with awe.

Or the highly evil Lautreamont's Maldoror in which a scene takes place in a church where Maldoror seizes a lamp that turns into an angel, he hurts the angel, and the angel becomes a lamp again and he says:

The guilty one looks at the lamp, the cause of all the preceding events. He runs like a madman through the streets of the Seine and flings the lamp over the parapet. It whirls around for a few seconds and then plunges down into the murky waters. Since that day, every evening from nightfall onwards a shining lamp can be seen which rises and floats gracefully on the water, passes beneath the arches just off the Pont Napoleon, bearing instead of handles two charming little angel's wings.

I t moves forward slowly on the water, passes beneath the arches of the Pont de la Gare and the Pont d'Austerlitz, and continues on its silent course along the Seine as far as the Pont d'Alma. Once there, it turns easily again to follow the course of the river, returning after four hours to its starting point. Its light, white as electric light, eclipses that of the gas lamps bordering the banks between which she advances like a queen, solitary, inscrutable, with an inextinguishable smile, not bitterly spilling its oil.

In the beginning, the boats gave it chase; but it foiled these vain efforts, escaped from all pursits, diving like a coquette to reappear a long way further on. now superstituous sailors stop singing when they see it, and row in the opposite direction. When you are crossing a bridge by night, be careful; you are bound to see the lamp shining somewhere or other; although it is said that it does not show itself to everyone. When a human being with something on his conscience crosses the bridge, its light suddely goes out, and the man, terror-stricken, vainly and desperately peers at the surface and the mudbanks of the river. He knows what that means.

Needless to say, I prefer descriptions of this nature to those of Steinbeck's. Or even Denton Welch's descriptions of England which, while not surreal, bring lovely visions to my mind with his words. This is an author that is truly underrated and not enough people know about him.
post #35 of 202
Quote:
Originally Posted by wildmonkeys
I hated - The Old Man and the Sea - I know people loved it but I hate boats & fishing and it just made me want to scream....

BJ
Barney & Ben
HATED this book... but I can't believe anyone picked my beloved Jane Austen
post #36 of 202
Steinbeck's straightforward writing is precisely why I love him. I usually don't go for flowery descriptions..too distracting for me.
post #37 of 202
I loathed The Rainbow by DH LAwrence- I tried several times to read it as a teen for my A-level english, but fell asleep everytime. I glimpsed through it last year and found it is actually quite intense and even sexy. Oh, how I missed out!

I have to agree with the Old Man and the Sea- yawn.
post #38 of 202
It took be a bit to really get into Pride & Prejudice, but once I did i LOVED it! It's one of my favorites. DUNE on the other hand is the most boring book on the face of the earth. Ok, so some people really love it; perhaps I'm just not in to science fiction.
post #39 of 202
Thread Starter 
It was one of many books I never finished. I actually LIKE Dickens' work, but I could never make it past the fog in the opening scene.


Quote:
Originally Posted by benharperfan
Charles Dickens' Bleak House is by far the most boring to me. My high school AP English Lit teacher assigned it to me my senior year for an individual project as he said that I was the only student he'd known in years who could probably get through it. He changed his mind a week later and assigned me a different book, claiming it was just too mean to make me read such a yawn!
post #40 of 202
Gulliver's Travels by Jonathan Swift is the most boring book on the planet.

Good grief, some people actually don't like Grapes of Wrath?! That is one of my all-time favorite books ever! It's kind of ironic, but I read Great Gatsby right after Grapes of Wrath, and thought it was very trite (but not the most boring book ever). I LOVE everything I've read by Herman Melville, especially Moby Dick, Omoo, and Barneby the Scrivner.
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