Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Books that Were Hard for Me to Read for Various Reasons

Here I am again with another list fashioned after the Broke and Bookish's Top Ten Tuesday meme. This wasn't an easy list to come up with, just like the books on it were not especially easy to read. I'll try to explain the various reasons these books were difficult for me as I go through my list. 

10. All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque

I had to read this one as a freshman in high school and again in college.  It's a depressing book about young German soldiers in World War I who have their youth stolen from them by the atrocities of war, and it also has one of THE WORST endings of a book EVER.  (I won't give it away in case you haven't read it. Good luck if you do have to read it.)

9. The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway

Another one from that blasted freshman English class in high school! Even though it was short, it was just painful. It's about an old man struggling to catch a big fish. That is all. Honestly I don't remember if he catches it or not. It's one of my father's favorite books; a metaphor about the struggle of life of something.... I don't even think I finished it.

8. The Twilight Series by Stephenie Meyer

Like a train wreck, I could not look away. But it was not pretty.

7. Babbitt by Sinclair Lewis

Supposedly an American classic. I was supposed to read this in college for a history class about the 1920's and 1930's. It's about a real estate agent and has no real plot. Yep.

6. Survival in Auschwitz by Primo Levi

Mr. Levi was an Italian scientist, who also happened to be Jewish. He was arrested during World War II by the Italian Fascist regime and sent to Auschwitz. His book is a harrowing account of the evil that was committed there. A well written and important book, but so hard to read because of the subject matter.

5. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

I read this book when I was in the 8th grade. It was probably a little too hard for me then, but I was determined to read it. Long and slooooow moving with a twist that just didn't make a lot of sense to me. Maybe if I re-read it as adult? Nah.

4. Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

This book is about a young man and a girl he loves.  Unfortunately, she marries someone else. 50-something years and HUNDREDS of pages later they finally are together. This is one of those books that some people absolutely love but I just thought was overrated.

3. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath

I thought this was actually a very good book but it is so sad and depressing. It is the story of a successful, ambitious young woman who slowly goes insane. To make matters worse, Sylvia Plath herself took her own life when she was just 30 years old.

2. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

Some would say this is an American classic.... Steinbeck has a very distinct writing style that I find difficult. Not only that this is a story of terribly poor people on a horrible journey, but there is AN ENTIRE CHAPTER ABOUT A TURTLE CROSSING THE ROAD. That's all I need to say.

And drumroll please.....

1.  The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
A man wakes up one day and he's a cockroach. He goes through his whole day and NEVER ONCE WONDERS WHY HE'S A COCKROACH. I couldn't handle it. Thankfully it's short.

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