12 March 2007

Lost the plot

The results of a poll, released today, show the top ten books that British adults could not finish. Here’s my top ten selection of books I either didn’t finish at all, or that took me years to finish:

1. The Little Friend by Donna Tartt.
This was very disappointing to read after The Secret History (one of my favourite books). It languished under my bed half-read for a few years before I skim-read the rest of it.

2. Babel Tower by A S Byatt.
Although I’ve started this twice I haven’t admitted defeat on it yet – it’s still on my to-read shelf.

3. Little Men by Louisa M Alcott.
I wouldn’t say I altogether disliked it, but unlike Little Women it doesn’t seem to have much of a story, so it was a bit of a slog to get through it.

4. The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy.
For some reason I can’t get into books set in India. At least I didn’t waste money on this one – it was a library book.

5. One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez.
I did eventually finish it but it put me off buying anything else labeled as magical realism.

6. Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie.
Magical realism set in India – why did I buy this? I didn’t finish it and didn’t bother keeping it.

7. Number 9 Dream by David Mitchell.
Interesting premise but it got tedious and confusing. I did finish it eventually, and it was better than I’d expected from the confusing beginning.

8. The Lord of the Rings by J R R Tolkein.
It was worth it in the end, but it took me over 20 years to get beyond the first book.

9. Harry Potter a l’Ecole des Sorciers by J K Rowling.
I can only manage a few pages of this at a time – it’s a long-term project for me.

10. The Complete Works of Jane Austen.
I’m enjoying it, but it is another long-term project.

1 comment:

John said...

You do read plenty of books!

I was surprised when I read the survey and "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" won. After getting half way I lost interest. I haven't read any fiction since (not counting reading to my children). So much for Rowling encouriging reading?

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