1. jc.
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    jc. Contributing Member

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    Would you intentionally read a book series you hate?

    Discussion in 'Book Discussion' started by jc., Mar 5, 2012.

    Like most people on here, I read foremost for enjoyment. Even when I'm "studying" I read authors whose work or style I enjoy. Also, I'm usually not a very picky reader and what annoys other writers don't bug me that much. For this reason I rarely bump into anything I don't like.

    I downloaded a sample of Tracy Hickman's and Margaret Weis' Dragons of Autumn Twilight: Chronicles, Volume One (Dragonlance Chronicles) for my Kindle. Later in the day, I put my Kindle down out of sheer frustration and walked away--my husband assumed I'd been strongly affected by the book and tried to "surprise" me by buying all three books in the series on my Kindle for me.

    When I sat back down and saw that all three books had magically appeared on my list, I almost screamed and threw it across the room because of how much I'd hated the sample. What am I going to do with three full books?

    My question is, would you intentionally read a book series you hate? Why or why not?
     
  2. Henning
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    Henning Member

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    Maybe to figure out what's so bad about it and not repeat it myself. Personally I wouldn't waste time on it.
     
  3. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I'd read them if I was being paid to. If I was a professional reviewer, for instance. But otherwise, no. Life is way too short to spend time reading books you're not enjoying. Don't waste your life reading what you hate, enrich your life by reading what you love.
     
  4. Rebel Yellow
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    Rebel Yellow Active Member

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    There are so many good books out there and life is too short to read them all. I don't think you should be wasting time on a book series you hate.
     
  5. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Probably not an entire series. I would read a book or two from such a series to understand why I hate it, or whether I have judged it unfairly.

    For that reason I read Stephenie Meyer's New Moon. Why that one? My laundromat has a book exchange corner, so I was able to read it at no cost other than irretrievable hours.

    Alas, I did not judge it too harshly. Likewise Stephen King's Under the Dome.
     
  6. Daydream
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    Daydream Contributing Member Contributor

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    Hmm I'm actually looking to read StephenKing's Under the Dome!
    On the subject of this topic, I would possibly read something I hate, but then I would probably end up skim reading about half of it due to my frustration at not liking it. If I really wanted to I could probably force myself to read it, like when I read academic journals for uni... ><
     
  7. Mark_Archibald
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    Mark_Archibald Active Member

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    Hate? No, the book I'm currently reading isn't for my enjoyment. It doesn't have a page turning story, or interesting characters. Rather its helping me develop my grammar, and vocabulary while becoming the most sophisticated book I've ever read. Its called 'Infinite Jest', and by the time I'm done with it I predict I'll be a better writer. I don't hate the book, but it is a bit of a snore.

    What should you do with your books? Ask him if he kept the receipt I guess.
     
  8. AmsterdamAssassin
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    AmsterdamAssassin Contributing Member

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    If you identified why you hated it, there is no more purpose of reading on.
     
  9. Daydream
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    Daydream Contributing Member Contributor

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    Hmm I can understand the OP's position. Its happened to me before too. Someones given me a book I didn't like as a present, but I didnt want to be rude so I read it anyway.
     
  10. prettyprettyprettygood
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    prettyprettyprettygood Active Member

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    Bless your husband's heart! But no I wouldn't read a book I didn't enjoy, let alone a series- my reading time is too limited to waste it on something poor. Oh, and if it was less than a week ago you can return kindle books, although your husband will probably notice the refund on his statement so you won't be able to pretend you've read them :)
     
  11. superpsycho
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    superpsycho Contributing Member

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    It would depend on the desert island I’m on and how bored I am.
     
  12. Wolfbane
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    Wolfbane Banned

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    Seeing as I've read the original book complained about Tracy Hickman's and Margaret Weis' Dragons of Autumn Twilight: Chronicles, Volume One (Dragonlance Chronicles) when it first came out - I actually bought the large hardcover verison that has all volumes included - I have to kind of ask what was so frustrating.

    The book is slow going in some parts and jumps a bit, but it's much better than the trash I have been forced into reading by friends and family Harry Potter [read the first chapter of the first book and chucked it at the first library donation box and never touched another one], Twilight [if I wanted to read about twit teenagers with mood swings, I could just look out the window at my neighbours' brats]

    I would read a series I hate outside of those two [Harry Potter / Twilight] because they are simply put overrated garbage.

    And in my mind if you don't read a series you don't like how are you doing to learn?

    I mean TH and MW's stories are probably one of the most popular fantasy books that can be found.
     
  13. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    If you plan to negatively critique a book, it's crucial that you read it first. There are so many people who eagerly jump to bash on something simply because it's popular and they think it's avant-garde to dislike popular things just because. This is an extremely childish thing to do. Even if you don't think you'll like it based on what you've heard, read it before critiquing so that the issues you raise come from logical self-examination of said issue, not just word of mouth. Even if you don't make it through the book, give it a chance so that your opinions will be your own.

    Occasionally, something will be so bad that it's funny, but this is more often for movies than books. Normally the only books I don't like are too wordy, dry and boring to get through, and I don't want to waste my time boring myself. The only other reason I'd hate a book is if it condones sexist or overly-stereotypical messages (like Twilight), and I can only read so much of that before I start getting angry about it.
     
  14. Wolfbane
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    Wolfbane Banned

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    Oh my I said that I hadn't read it. As I said before English isn't my first language.

    What I meant to say is if I had known the simplicity behind the book I never would have bothered wasting my money on buying Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets which I ultimately ended up reading because of the fact that I wanted to understand what all the raving was about. It's a very basic book based on real life situations with some alterations to give it a sense of fantasy and that anyone [including those of lesser category] can rise up to do all they want... a book meant to appeal to the reader on the basis of someone putting themselves in the main character's shoes. It's of a style vaguely similar to S. King in writing although a bit more detailed.

    Twilight is written again on an everyday and as such a very basic situation. It has no depth, the characters are flighty at best, and the storyline is what? Absolutely nothing. Girl finds guy... guy is a controlling individual [there's hints I believe in one of the books of phyiscal abuse in the relationship (bruises in their romance) but Bella shrugs it off as nothing... encouraging a similar mindset to simple minded girls that use Bella as a "role model"]... and despite the outstanding dangers, the denial, and the fact that Bella despite her undying attraction to Edward still has some vague [and then increasing] interest in Jacob before going back to "her man" protraying a fickle mindset, etc they all in all end up looking everyone's fairy tale ending with the love of their lives for all eternity.

    These stories are flighty meant to appeal to the general masses as I said before on the basis it protrays what you / the reader wants to have happen [wished had happened to them]. It's a beginners trick according to what my creative writing professor said.

    And I agree. Seeing as I've read - and not for school projects - some of the classics such as : Beowulf, Wuthering Heights, Last of the Mohicans, Robinson Crusoe, A Christmas Carol, almost all of Charles Dickens', The Count of Monte Cristo, King Solomon's Mines, Les Misérables, etc for fun and not as school [I have them in my own book collection actually] this modern junk is junk compared to the classics meant for a simpler [by that simpler minded] audience
     
  15. Phoenix Hikari
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    I know what you mean.... it's sad. :cry:

    I am a very picky reader, more because I don't like stories that are loaded with too much descriptions and little actions/dialogs. Currently I'm reading The Black Magician Trilogy, it's not a page turner for me but I'm not willing to give up on it. Simple reason is because if I don't read this or the other then I'll end up reading nothing.

    I'm in desperate need to read so I can improve my English and writer-skills.
     
  16. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    No worries. Nothing was directed at you. I was just answering to the OP's question, not rebutting your post - sorry if it came across that way.

    I understand about Twilight. I hate sexist shit more than anything else in the world, so I'm not going to read an entire series glorifying submissive doormatship either. I was just talking about people who criticize something for being poor literature when they haven't read it themselves at all, just because they assume that popularity must automatically equal cheap, bubblegum-pop quality.
     
  17. AmsterdamAssassin
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    AmsterdamAssassin Contributing Member

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    Funny thing though - I'm currently reading a book that is set in my hometown, but it's riddled with mistakes. I could've given it a negative review on amazon, but instead I emailed the author with an offer of corrections. The author was very pleased that I'd rather help get the facts straight than publicly crucify the lack of research. Although I had no other ulterior motives, the author requested a sample of my work, that will probably be forwarded to the author's agent. And so a courtesy can lead to unexpected bounty.
     
  18. VM80
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    VM80 Contributing Member Contributor

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    ^ Good stuff.

    As for the OP's question, I don't think I could read an entire series if I'd read, say, book 1 and hated it. I lack the patience for that, and there's so much great stuff I have yet to read.

    But I give many (most) things a fair shot.
     
  19. Salama
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    Salama Member

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    Not in a million years! Life is too short for that kind of torture.
     
  20. killbill
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    killbill Contributing Member

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    Yes, I would, specially if I have already paid for it for some reasons :) Seriously though, I would still read it just to find out what are the things I hate about it.
     
  21. funkybassmannick
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    funkybassmannick Contributing Member

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    Not only to figure out why you hate it, but also to figure out why other people love it and to find that ineffable quality of "popular" writing. Theoretically, when you apply "popular" writing to your "good" writing, you have an instant best-seller, just add water.

    To understand what makes it "popular," I can see where reading the entire series would be useful. If you hate Harry Potter but want to understand what makes it good, you will get a much better idea if you read the entire series.

    Reading like this is also a great way to try to speed up your reading ability.
     
  22. lorilee
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    lorilee Member

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    I have, twice each. They were a couple of my husband's favourite series. I'd read both before we met and, since we have the same taste in books, i had to again to see if I missed anything the first time around. I still don't like them
     
  23. funkybassmannick
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    funkybassmannick Contributing Member

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    That's another good reason. If it's a favorite series of a friend, family member, or significant other, it could be a great way to get to know them better and connect deeper.
     
  24. sam80
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    Wow, everyone has a different views, but really do you need to be so offensive to get your point across.

    If I have misunderstood you then I'm sorry. I enjoy some books, just because of that, enjoyment, no looking for hidden messages, or symbolism, and I appreciate that some books i love others will hate, no skin of my nose. But to say they are for 'simple minded' people is unnecessary. Ok so I like stephanie meyer, that does not make me simple minded, in the same way that the fact I like dickens or hardy does not make me smarter (they too have places on my book shelf) To insinuate it, is offensive.

    If i am being over sensitive, apologies, but it irked me enough to mention it.
     

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