BTT: The Best Book I Haven’t Loved



What, in your opinion, is the best book that you haven’t liked? Mind you, I don’t mean your most-hated book–oh, no. I mean the most accomplished, skilled, well-written, impressive book that you just simply didn’t like.

Like, for movies–I can acknowledge that Citizen Kane is a tour de force and is all sorts of wonderful, cinematically speaking,
but . . . I just don’t like it. I find it impressive and quite an accomplishment, but it’s not my cup of tea.

So . . . what book (or books) is your Citizen Kane?

Hands down it is The Sun Also Rises. I can’ even begin to tell you how much I loathed the characters.  They were just so silly and a shallow and grating that I really thought I would go insane.  I finished reading it through the sheer force of will.  Hemmingway’s spare and straightforward writing made them that much more annoying.  It was like reading a Dick and Jane book from Hell.  I have had several conversations with people on how he wrote them that way on purpose and you weren’t supposed to like the people and all the symbolism.  Believe me, I get it.  I just hated the book and haven’t read any Hemmingway since, outside the odd short story.  Those haven’t moved me either.

Also didn’t care for Catch-22 and Lolita.  But I don’t feel as much vitriol for them as I do for The Sun Also Rises.  Does that mean The Sun is a better book?

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  1. I have not read any Hemmingway. I guess I gotta start so I can find out for myself how he is as a writer.

  2. I liked Hemingway’s “The Old Man and the Sea” but having said that, I haven’t read anything else of his. Reading the responses of this Meme, the chances seem slim at the moment!
    Lolita – that is just in the league of its own. I have no idea what to make of it – it’s just so strange.

  3. “It was like reading a Dick and Jane book from Hell.”
    LOL! Talk about hitting the nail on the head! I despised this book as well. I’ve also read “The Old Man in the Sea” (I’m a sadist, what I can I say) and it’s not much better.

  4. Aw, jeez, Hemingway is one of my favorites! It seems I’m in the minority about this one. Your blog is fun, so I’m adding you to my blogroll and bloglines feeds as soon as I get around to it.

  5. Mae ~ I have heard that it’s the only book of his that is different and likable, enjoyable and I might try that one, but after writing this post, probably not any time soon.
    Jen P ~ I’m always curious to hear another opinion.
    J.S. ~ I have heard that it’s not as bad as his other stuff, but I am afraid to try.
    Chartroose ~ I looked to see if you had reviewed any Hemingway, but I guess I’m out of luck. you might be in the minority here, but I always feel like someone is trying to explain to me how I just don’t get him.
    Jen ~ I don’t know what to tell you. You might like him. I can do spare or I can do some annoying characters. Both at the same time is hard for me.
    And I guess I have to stop trash talking him since I couldn’t even spell his name right in my post. In my defense it was 6:45 in he morning and I was trying to post before work. :-p