Saturday, November 05, 2011

Annoying Books

How many of you have read a book even though there was something annoying about it? A character didn’t appeal to you or a plot twist came out of the blue. Or maybe you kept reading to find out what happened to a particular character, only to discover that character disappeared with no reason or mention.

I recently read such a book. I’m not giving the title or author name. I’m not reviewing it because, although it was a good story, on the final page there was a twist that changed everything. The final page. The twist was along the lines of the gimmick they used on the old Dallas show where it turned out J.R. wasn’t shot and killed, it’d just been a dream.

I closed the book and was mad as a pig on a blazing hot tin roof, Yes, that sentence makes no sense, but it’s about as logical as the ending to the book I was reading.

Honestly, I was so stunned that a well-known author would resort to a gimmick to end the book. And, frankly, I was pissed.

Have any of you read a book that annoyed you? Maybe you finished it; maybe you didn’t. What was the trigger that made you put down the book or suspend your belief in the characters?

20 comments:

  1. A favorite detective did things throughout this last book that were totally out of character> It was annoying but I kept reading thinking he'd somehow be redeemed. In the end it was only worse, he did something disgustingly illegal. Flaws are something we all have but this went so far beyond. After so many years I won't be reading this author again.
    I couldn't understand how the publishers and editors let this happen.

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  2. That would be annoying. If the ending is not satisfying, I really feel like I've wasted my time.

    I read a book a few years ago that had the worst dialogue. The worst. They story was really good, but I found myself skipping huge chunks of dialogue so that I wouldn't get eyestrain from rolling them.

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  3. "eyestrain from rolling them" LOL!!!!!

    Yeah, I hate it when that happens. You should ask for your money back or send a note to the author and say, OK, now write a REAL ending!

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  4. I have actually, but luckily for the author I was already a hot-headed fan of hers, so it didn't stop me from buying any more of her books. This one though, was more like NO ending at all, and I was sitting there thinking, this is IT???

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  5. The Who Shot JR thing made me stop watching Dallas when I was young. There are books that are part of series that disappoint me so much, I don't read the next one(s).

    I wonder what you read....

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  6. yep - oddly enough it was a book that my mum was reading when she died. Being that sort of family (readaholics) I picked it up after the funeral. It was a good read until the end - lunch bag let down.
    If a book is annoying from the beginning I just don't read it. I have to say when Elizabeth George killed one of her continuing characters I was seriously miffed. First of all, I was heart-broken. Then I just, without thinking about it too much, stopped reading her.

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  7. We seem to be all having a similar reaction - we quit reading that author. We lose trust or we lose enthusiasm or we decide to move on to another author or series. To me as a writer, this is a lesson. We don't want our series to become stale, but we still have to be careful not to alienate readers. This is also true with a standalone.

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  8. Yes, there was a Skipp and Spector book where on the very last page, all was lost and the world ended. All that time invested in the characters, and then everybody died! I was mad.

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  9. It has happened from time to time. When I read Jean Genet, most of the characters are annoying, but still the books are great >:)

    Cold As Heaven

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  10. Yes, and I get just as ticked as you. Usually I don't read on, but sometimes there's a plotline or a particular character that makes me keep going even when I know better.

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  11. It has happened to me, but I usually won't give up on an author I like based on one experience like that. If it happens again, though, I'd stop buying that author's books. It does make me mad, because time is so valuable and I hate feeling like I've wasted it.
    Karen

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  12. I would be, too, Alex!

    This was the first book I'd read by this author. I have a handed down iPad. It has quite a few books on it that my husband bought. I may try the author again since I hope this was a one-time gimmick. I did notice that it was the only book by this author that my husband had downloaded.

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  13. The most recent "annoying" book I read was by a well known cozy mystery author. I bonded with what I thought was the main character, empathized with her struggles and looked forward to her issues being resolved when bam! she was killed on page 50. In comes the sister (the real main character) who had only been mentioned in passing up until that point. I was so annoyed I stopped reading.
    Ann

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  14. I've read several books that have annoyed me. I usually finish them, despite the irritation but a couple of months ago, I stopped reading one book only a few pages into it. Not because of anything the characters did or did not do but because the grammar was just so damn bad.

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  15. I usually give books a chance & keep reading, but there have been a few that I just couldn't finish, & like everyone else I didn't read the author again. I've actually not read Stephen King because the first book I read of his was Stand. I know King's a legend, but I attempted to read Stand 3 times without liking his writing at all. I know he's a genius & it says more about me than his writing that I didn't read another of his books. Literary Gods, forgive me, I have shunned one of your favourite sons ;)

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  16. Hi Helen .. I've struggled through various books - and ended up just being bored and disappointed - now I'd stop reading.

    Love your phrase .. Pig on a hot tin roof - bet he was sizzling ... cheers Hilary

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  17. Oh yes, annoying books! I've gotten through a few of them, some which were bestsellers. So apparently they weren't annoying to everyone.

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  18. i recently wrote something along the same lines about a New York Time best seller and I'm afraid I mentioned names and even gave pictures of the books because I was so mad. I had bought 6 of her books and after reading four I just threw up my hands and said " What IS This". The plots are the same and even the gimmicks borrowed from book to book, ggrrrhhh such a waste of money

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  19. Did you ever watch that TV hospital series years ago called St. Elsewhere? It ran for several years, and in the final episode it was revealed that the whole thing had been a dream.

    And I read a thriller once--I won't reveal that the author's name was James Patterson--because friends told me how great his stuff was. But the killer gets off scot free, and in the very last line of the book, the narrator gleefully says he's the killer. That came out of the blue, and yeah, it was annoying.

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  20. Hmm...maybe I'm not reading enough books! I have to have a strong recommendation from someone I trust before spending my valuable time reading a book. So I guess I have avoided most of the "annoying" ones. lol

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