Author Topic: Truly Terrible Books thread  (Read 15740 times)

Mr Larrington

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Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #25 on: March 10, 2011, 11:15:06 am »
Under The Frog was good.  The Thought Gang was OK.  The Collector Collector has been stalled at page twenty for about five years and is unlikely to get much further.
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Pancho

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Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #26 on: March 10, 2011, 11:33:00 am »
Quicksilver by Neal Stephenson.  After the masterpiece that was Cryptonomicon, he followed with this massive piece of boring, self-indulgent verbal ditchwater.  He interspersed his own characters (with unbelieveable, tenuous links to characters in previous books) with real historical characters such as Isaac Newton, but then didn't do anything with the historicaal guys others except bring them in to act as intellectual wallpaper.  That would be forgiveable if he hadn't used 200 extra pages doing so, and if there'd been any plot in the first place. 

I didn't bother with the rest of the Baroque cycle.

Even Crypto could have done with a bit of editorial oversight (I seem to remember about five pages given over to describing the flavour of breakfast cereal as a snack). And an ending would have been nice.

That said, I liked Crypto lots. And am only 200 pages from finishing the Baroque Cycle. This, I know will disappoint ending-wise. But, treated as a sort of period soap opera written by an autistic history buff, it's good for bed time reading.

Re: Truly Terrible Books thread
« Reply #27 on: March 10, 2011, 11:33:32 am »
(Spycatcher ~ Peter Wright.  I went to a lot of time and trouble to get a mate to smuggle this into the country after a trip to New York, and then wished I hadn't bothered.

Peter Wright's opus was best summed up by this quote from Spy Thatcher - The Collected Ravings of a Senior MI5 Officer (William Rushton)*:

Quote
'... all self-justification, and Who's a Clever Boy Then? and page after page of Practical Wireless for the Criminally Insane.'

* Spy Thatcher has several advantages over Wright's scribblings. It's a good deal funnier, it's a good deal shorter, and is probably more plausible. I commend it to the House forum.   :smug:
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Mrs Pingu

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Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #28 on: March 10, 2011, 11:40:52 am »
I disagree with Song of Stone. I thought Dead Air and The Business were far worse.

Anything by that Dan Brown. I didn't even make it past Ch 2 the writing was so dire.
Beyond Black by Hilary Mantel. Just don't, it's pure dead dogs doo.

Tries to think of name of other execrable pile of shite that was a waste of hours of my life, and fails. Thank dog for memory loss.
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Clandy

Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #29 on: March 10, 2011, 11:47:16 am »
Anything by Stephen King after 1985 is crap. Bloated pap with twenty chapters of character padding and one chapter of story. He should have stuck to short stories. The Bachman Books and Skeleton Crew are two very good collections of such.

Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #30 on: March 10, 2011, 11:53:04 am »
Beyond Black by Hilary Mantel.

A brilliant book, in my humble opinion, as most of her writing.

Pancho

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Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #31 on: March 10, 2011, 11:54:29 am »
Banks made the transition from interesting writer to conveyor belt authorship fairly rapidly, I thought. It was particularly noticeable and disappointing because his first few books were really, really good. Every now and then I succumb to hope and optimistically buy his latest release.

interzen

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Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #32 on: March 10, 2011, 12:00:49 pm »
Anything by Stephen King after 1985 is crap. Bloated pap with twenty chapters of character padding and one chapter of story. He should have stuck to short stories. The Bachman Books and Skeleton Crew are two very good collections of such.
As ever, Family Guy sums Stephen King up quite nicely:


    YouTube
        - Family guy Stephen King
 


I was going to say that I don't like any of his books because I'm not really into the whole horror/supernatural thing, although I did read "The Running Man" once (the film is better, but that's not saying much)

Pancho

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Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #33 on: March 10, 2011, 12:02:10 pm »
(Spycatcher ~ Peter Wright.  I went to a lot of time and trouble to get a mate to smuggle this into the country after a trip to New York, and then wished I hadn't bothered.

Peter Wright's opus was best summed up by this quote from Spy Thatcher - The Collected Ravings of a Senior MI5 Officer (William Rushton)

Quote
'... all self-justification, and Who's a Clever Boy Then? and page after page of Practical Wireless for the Criminally Insane.'


I read that as a recommendation.

Clandy

Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #34 on: March 10, 2011, 12:10:51 pm »
Anything by Stephen King after 1985 is crap. Bloated pap with twenty chapters of character padding and one chapter of story. He should have stuck to short stories. The Bachman Books and Skeleton Crew are two very good collections of such.
As ever, Family Guy sums Stephen King up quite nicely:

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/xCYr_PTnyEQ&rel=1" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/v/xCYr_PTnyEQ&rel=1</a>

I was going to say that I don't like any of his books because I'm not really into the whole horror/supernatural thing, although I did read "The Running Man" once (the film is better, but that's not saying much)

If I have any favourites they would be The Long Walk and Ladyfingers.

Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #35 on: March 10, 2011, 12:39:07 pm »
Has to be Dan Brown, doesn't it?  I've only read Angels and Demons, but the characters were so utterly vapid and unsympathetic, the writing was so grotesquely sub-sub comic book, and the plot was so hopelessly preposterous that it was offensive in every way - the only way it could have been worse is if it came around to my house and left a turd in the kitchen before burning down my street.  Which, coincidentally, is what would happen to Dan Brown, in a kind universe. 

Someone gave me a couple of books by Maggie Furey a while back, which were tedious, formulaic fantasy fiction, and didn't have any of the North East flavour I might have expected from a Newcastle author.  Fair enough, so far so whatever, but the lazy cow was too idle even to bother tidying up the plot strands in the course of the rushed ending.  Whoops, I forgot about the marauding Demon King who was laying waste to the cities.  Oh well.

Also Stephen King.  The books make good movies/doorstops/kindling, but you wouldn't want to read one of them.

Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #36 on: March 10, 2011, 12:44:26 pm »
Lovely Bones
Just dreadful
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LindaG

Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #37 on: March 10, 2011, 12:53:00 pm »
Yep, Dan Brown has to be right up there, only worsted by 'Left Behind'.  I read two chapters, and the writing was so awful I couldn't bear it.  Any.  More.  Regardless of the content.  And I threw the book across the room. 

Apparently there are sixteen of these books. 

If a job's worth doing it's worth doing well, as my mum used to say.

And the job wasn't worth doing, they didn't do it well, and really, they shouldn't have bothered.

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Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #38 on: March 10, 2011, 12:58:02 pm »
'Left Behind'.  I read two chapters, and the writing was so awful I couldn't bear it.  Any.  More.  Regardless of the content.  And I threw the book across the room. 
I've never read any of those.  If I start, maybe you should put me on suicide watch.

Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #39 on: March 10, 2011, 12:59:45 pm »
*Googles "Left Behind"*

Ah.  No wonder it hasn't appeared on my radar.

LindaG

Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #40 on: March 10, 2011, 01:01:06 pm »
I read the thread title as "Truely Terrible Brooks thread"

interzen

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Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #41 on: March 10, 2011, 01:04:18 pm »
*Googles "Left Behind"*

Ah.  No wonder it hasn't appeared on my radar.
Ditto.
And reading the descriptions was enough to convince me that the books should probably be shovelled into a deep, dark hole and left to die. Along with the authors.

Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #42 on: March 10, 2011, 01:08:16 pm »
Christian sci-fi.  Like Christian rock's pale, geeky brother.

Mrs Pingu

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Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #43 on: March 10, 2011, 01:08:56 pm »
'Left Behind'.  I read two chapters, and the writing was so awful I couldn't bear it.  Any.  More.  Regardless of the content.  And I threw the book across the room.  
I've never read any of those.  If I start, maybe you should put me on suicide watch.
Oh wow, just trying and failing to read the wikipedia page made me want to poke myself in the eyes with sporks.
Do not clench. It only makes it worse.

her_welshness

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Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #44 on: March 10, 2011, 01:21:05 pm »
'Left Behind'.  I read two chapters, and the writing was so awful I couldn't bear it.  Any.  More.  Regardless of the content.  And I threw the book across the room.  
I've never read any of those.  If I start, maybe you should put me on suicide watch.
Oh wow, just trying and failing to read the wikipedia page made me want to poke myself in the eyes with sporks.
+ 1. Am now feeling tainted. Linda am well impressed that you read two chapters  :o

Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #45 on: March 10, 2011, 01:29:12 pm »
Agree about the Sookie novels too - I was very surprised they were so bad as the TV series is really good.

Not read Twilight. Maybe I won't bother. They are my kind of thing but have heard they are Not Great.

The Sookie Stackhouse novels read like they are badly-written fan-fiction based on a popular show. HBO did an amazing job of reverse-engineering that popular show, and I find the books amusing to snigger at the utter Mary-Sue of a main character (and the fact that every time a new attractive male character is introduced, Sookie manages to get dumped by her current boyfriend so she can have guilt-free sex with the new bloke).

Twilight is a more accomplished work of literature. However, the premise and contents are utter drivel. It is full of teen angst without bothering to give a reason for the angst ("I met a cute boy today. He likes me; I like him; my dad approves; his family approve. Woe! Angst! Curse you, cruel fate!"). Plus, some bits are cringeworthily laughable ("I am a vampire. I sparkle in the sunlight. All my family are vampires and we're all amazingly attractive and gifted with superpowers. At night we use our superpowers to fight crime play baseball. I couldn't possibly turn you into a vampire and inflict such a harsh, suffering-filled lifestyle upon you.")

 ::-) :sick:
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mattc

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Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #46 on: March 10, 2011, 02:08:31 pm »
Christian sci-fi.  Like Christian rock's pale, geeky brother.
;D

Dan Brown is notable in being the most common author to be "donated"* to things like Book Crossing, and 2nd-hand book sales.

I only managed half a volume, but I reckon the L.Ron Hubbard books form the missing link between Christian sci-fi and Dan Brown.

*There must be a more suitable word here ...
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Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #47 on: March 10, 2011, 02:12:08 pm »
Christian sci-fi.  Like Christian rock's pale, geeky brother.
;D

Dan Brown is notable in being the most common author to be "donated"* to things like Book Crossing, and 2nd-hand book sales.

I only managed half a volume, but I reckon the L.Ron Hubbard books form the missing link between Christian sci-fi and Dan Brown.

*There must be a more suitable word here ...
I'm thinking of two: "unceremoniously dumped" :)
I'm also thinking about what a Blade/Twilight crossover would be like - Wesley Snipes vs. Robert whatsisface? Hell, I'd even *pay* to see that :)

Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #48 on: March 10, 2011, 02:18:21 pm »
A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian, by Marina Lewycka.  I just couldn't be bothered with any of the characters or the plot, which was shame becos' the bits about tractors were really interesting. 
"What a long, strange trip it's been", Truckin'

Re: Truely Terrible Books thread
« Reply #49 on: March 10, 2011, 03:58:46 pm »
Christian sci-fi.  Like Christian rock's pale, geeky brother.
;D

Dan Brown is notable in being the most common author to be "donated"* to things like Book Crossing, and 2nd-hand book sales.

I only managed half a volume, but I reckon the L.Ron Hubbard books form the missing link between Christian sci-fi and Dan Brown.

*There must be a more suitable word here ...

I believe that the words you are looking for are "inflicted upon".  :demon:
Hell is empty, and all of the devils are here.