Anyone who knows me will tell you that I read the way most people watch TV. I do it every single day, even if its just for half an hour. I’ve even turned up at children’s parties with my kindle in tow and sat down for a read. I used to read only one book at a time and, although I have changed genre over the years, I tended to stick to one genre at a time. As a consequence I have read loads of books over different genres. My favourite genres at the moment are YA and Thrillers, both at the same time is even better.
Books that I have read but wish I hadn’t bothered are:
The Road – Cormack McCarthy – I read this during my Literature degree as the university forums were always full of people who said it was a masterpiece. I obviously didn’t get it. I spent the whole book waiting for something to happen, or an explanation of what had happened or what was going to happen. Maybe you are supposed to gain your own insight into the deadened earth but I didn’t find it. One of the most depressing books I have ever read.
Another classic wasted on me was:
The Alchemist – this was lent to me by one of my best friends. She was a philosophy student at the time and couldn’t stop going on about this revelatory book. I duly borrowed the book and read it, spent the entire time trying to glean the point and again, failing to do so. Absolutely nothing happened. I can remember talking to her about it years later and she admitted she had been nonplussed about it too. When I asked her why she’d recommended it to me she said she thought I’d ‘get it’ as I was the literature student. I told her it was completely lost on me and I thought she had ‘got it’ because she was a philosophy student.
During my degree I had to read my fair share of books solely for literature assignments. The one that stood out the most for all the wrong reasons was:
Candide – Voltaire – The style of writing for this book was what grated on my nerves the most. For me it was written in one of the most childish, whining voices I have ever had the displeasure to read. The topic of slavery was not one that I ever wish to revisit either.
Years ago, once I started a book, I would usually finish it, whether I liked it or not, but now, if it doesn’t grab me by the third chapter I put it down. Life is far too short to read books that you are not interested in.