Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday: Books That were hard for me to read

As always, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish!
(Covers link to Goodreads)

Today's topic is top ten books that were hard for me to read, for whatever reason (content, writing style, emotions, etc.)

1. Moby Dick by Herman Melville
Too much nonfiction hidden in a fiction book. Hear me grumble about it in this post.

 2. Les Miserables by Victor Hugo
Don't get me wrong, I adore this book! I adore it SO MUCH. I just don't particularly adore Hugo's many digressions. They were definitely hard to get through. (And I do confess I skimmed occasionally.)
(I ramble about Les Miz in four separate posts here.)


3. A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin.
Sigh... I can't seem to get into GoT. I love high fantasy and all that comes with it, but after reading the second book of the series, I couldn't handle it anymore. And I didn't mind the deaths - truly I didn't! I just thought it sounded too much like a historical account. Everyone was a main character and no one was a main character. I stopped caring, which is definitely not a good thing. (Read my full post on GoT here.)

4. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
This one was hard to read because of course it's darn hard to focus on the words on the page when waterfalls are pouring out of your eyes. (My review here.) 

5. Bel Ami by Guy de Maupassant
I'm sure you've heard me rant about this one in previous Top Ten Tuesdays. The writing is good and yet - the hero (anti-hero?) keeps taking advantage of all these women and never ever ever gets his comeuppance! It makes me SO MAD. (If you want to read my longer rantings, it's #2 in this TTT.)

6. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
Tough, long, Russian lit. Why wouldn't  War and Peace be on this list? But ultimately, I'm glad I read it (and had a class on it, with a very helpful teacher.)
(You can read one of my essays for that class here.)

That's all I have for today, since my Freshman Assemble post also went up earlier this morning. (Sophia has two posts in one day? What is the world coming to?)

What books did you find hard to read? And why? 
If you did a post on todays TTT - link it to me in the comments!



  1. Enjoyed your post!

    A class on W&P? How awesome is that!

    1. It was pretty awesome! The teacher was a mother from my homeschool group who is a Russian native and who is an expert on Russian lit. She was able to tell us about some of the nuances that disappeared because of translation.

  2. I'm slowly making my way through War and Peace. Tough read because of the length and number of characters, but I think it will be worth it. I really want to read Les Mis and Game of Thrones, but I'm intimidated. I might try next year. Was there a book you were thinking of that just missed making the list?

    1. War and Peace is definitely worth it (if only for the bragging rights!).
      I will recommend that everyone read Les Miz until my dying day. READ IT. It is full of such, such beauty, and has something for everyone.
      Game of Thrones - try the first book, and if you like it, keep going.

      Hmm... a book that just missed the list? Oh, I just remembered a book that should definitely be on the list! The Swiss Family Robinson. Such BOREDOM.

  3. How could I forget Les Miserables?!?!?! That was definitely a hard book for me to read... still good though. :)

    1. Les Miz is always good :-) Have you seen the movie/show?

  4. Ah, I hear you with the waterfalls for The Book Thief. And of course, it's hard to function afterwards when you're just lying on the floor throwing a tantrum of denial. The things we bookworms put ourselves through. It's insane. OH, but I think you've read a whole lot of classics here and that is seriously amazing! I SUCK AT CLASSICS. the only ones I've read are Charles Dicken's and Peter Pan, Alice in Wonderland. I died at Jane Eyre. -_- I can't even look War and Peace in the eye.
    Oh, but I want to read Game of Thrones, but this doesn't make me enthused for it. I HATE it when books don't have real main characters. I find it so hard to get involved. :|

    1. Did you know that when people read about someone doing something, the part of the reader's brain gets activated as though they were REALLY doing that thing that the character is doing? (That was rather incoherent, but I hope you understand.) Which means that we bibliophiles voluntarily put our brains and emotions in horrific situations. What sane person does that?

      Yes, classics were my first book love (YA came last year). Oooh Charles Dickens is rather tough as an intro to Classics. But Jane Eyre...? My favorite heroine? I'd suggest you try again - she's my favorite strong female character (in every non-cliche non-superficial sense of the word).
      And yeah, War and Peace is hard, if you're not used to classics. Start with smaller things. (Do you want recs?)

      And give GoT a try - if it's not for you, don't feel bad about dropping it. It's too long to commit yourself to the whole darn series. (Also, I dislike how Martin portrays female characters. So.)


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