Thursday, 27 October 2011

Booking Through Thursday (8)

What’s the hardest/most challenging book you’ve ever read? Was it worth the effort? Did you read it by choice or was it an assignment/obligation?

I honestly don't know. I've spent a good part of the day trying to think of the most challenging book I've ever read and it's been tricky to come up with an answer. I think it must be Firmin by Sam Savage. My stepmother loaned it to me and the whole book was just so disturbing I ended up reading it desperately hoping it got better. It was purchased as part of a Borders haul (sorry Dad, your credit card must still be wincing!) and we both thought it sounded really good. It wasn't :(

I've also read quite a few classics which are more challenging than modern books purely for the language but I still enjoyed them and felt they were worth the effort. There have also been modern books with scenes I found difficult to read emotionally (like the end of Iron Kissed by Patricia Briggs) but again I still liked the book.

I think my problem is that if I find a book too challenging to read then I won't keep reading it. There are very few books I've given up on but if I find I'm really forcing myself to keep reading I'll stop. I've mentioned it here before, but The Time Machine is one of these. I just couldn't get into it so I gave up.


  1. I haven't read Firmin, but I've heard people saying the same thing you said.

  2. Thanks for commenting :) I really don't recommend Firmin. It's just weird, very very weird.

  3. Haven't heard of this title.
    I agree--if a book is too challenging to read, why force ourselves to continue? There have been times when I've forced myself to continue reading, but never have I ever ended up liking a work I had to force myself to read!

    :D Great answer!

  4. I've not read Firmin either but agree that you should stop if you're actually forcing yourself to read. Once outside of school you should be allowed to read for enjoyment. :)

    Here's my BTT - House Millar series


  5. I'm with you ... if a book is way too challenging, or way to boring, I don't finish it. There are too many good books out there I'd rather read!

  6. The only caveat to all this is that sometimes if you stick with a "challenging" book you find the going gets easier. Reading Shakespeare is a great example. At first it's a struggle, but after awhile you start to get used to the language and you can just "read" instead of having to concentrate, look things up etc. And it becomes a pleasure . . .

  7. I had a hard time thinking of an answer too, so I didn't post a BTT post this week. I know I'm lame.... :(


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