Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Top Ten Most Intimidating Books

Thanks to The Broke and the Bookish for hosting this weekly event! Considering my obsession with lists, I could not pass up the opportunity to participate in this one which asks to list your top 10 most intimidating books. When it comes to literature, I am a big fan of brevity so most of my entries intimidate me because of their size:
  1. Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace: Have you seen the size of this book? It's 1000+ pages with extensive footnotes and heavy enough to be used as a deadly blunt object!
  2. Moby Dick by Herman Melville: It's lengthy and about whaling, which does not interest me in the least. Not sure I possess the endurance to get through this one.
  3. Brothers Karamazov by Dostoeyevsky: I have struggled trying to read novels by the great Russian authors and this one is pretty massive in length. 
  4. Gravity's Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon: Everything about this guy's crazy high-brow style of writing is intimidating and makes me feel like an idiot.
  5. Middlemarch by George Eliot: Again, size is a deciding factor and I have had nothing but painful experiences when it comes to reading Victorian novels.
  6. Absalom, Absalom! by William Faulkner: It's kind of a sequel to The Sound and the Fury... *gulp*
  7. Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez: From a quick perusal, I just get the feeling that his style of writing will make this one a challenging read.   
  8. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte: I gave up on this novel several times but it is a required reading for one of my classes next semester, ugh. So not looking forward to it.
  9. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath: A lot of hype for this one and I fear it will be very disappointing.
  10. Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy: Again, it's one of those beloved Russian classics that is massive and one that I fear may not meet my high expectations. 


  1. Moby Dick I definitely get. I do hope to read Wuthering Heights soon. Great list.

    Sandy @ Somewhere Only We Know

  2. Wuthering Heights is one I am actively avoiding! Great list!

  3. That's definitely a dense list. Dostoeyevsky is one of my favorites, but he is definitely a lot to take on. I've felt obligated to take on Middlemarch but have yet to give it a go.

  4. I just recently read The Sound and the Fury and really liked it. Of course, it was for a class...so having the teacher explain a lot is always helpful. haha At that, I would be interested in reading more by Faulkner but he IS intimidating.


  5. I was thinking of putting Moby Dick on my list. On one hand there must be something that keeps people talking about it, on the other hand...whaling. I'll definitely get to it one day, but there are a lot I'm more eager to read.

  6. I really want to read Infinite Jest and The Brothers Karamazov.

    I hate Moby Dick so much that I told my children they had my permission to read the Cliff Notes and not bother with the actual book itself.

    My son is reading Gravity's Rainbow and if I weren't challenging myself to read only the books I already own, I'd borrow it from the library and read it. I think.

    Tried to read Absalom! Absalom! but hadn't even finished one chapter before I knew the subtext and the big climactic moment and didn't see a point. I loved The Sound and the Fury and As I Lay Dying but both of those kept me guessing. This one was simply too obvious.

    LOVED Hundred Years of Solitude while Middlemarch has sort of been on the fringe of my maybe someday list but I am not enthused enough to make it a priority.

    Wuthering Heights? Meh. I prefered Jane Eyre by far!

    Also LOVED Anna Karenina and The Bell Jar is very interesting, especially given it's history and when it was published, etc.

    I am challenging myself to read the books I already own this year. I have them all pinned here:


    I'm inviting anyone to chime in with any books they see that they want to read along with me or just want to see what my thoughts are in a future book review. Since I'm prone to giving away a book when I've read it, a recommendation could even be self-serving. LOL!

  7. I loved Hundred Years of Solitude but could not get into Love in the Time of Cholera. His writing style is beautiful, but it does take some getting used to - especially because many of his characters share the same name.

    Wuthering Heights has probably been ruined for me, thanks to Kate Beaton (http://www.harkavagrant.com/index.php?id=322) and Monty Python's semaphore version. But it sounds like the story would irritate me anyway.

  8. I had to come back because Infinite Jest is on sale today for the kindle and I not only bought a copy but I told a friend of mine what I'd done. He said he read and loved the book in college (so much so that he actually reread it as soon as he finished it the first time) and the two of us are reading it together.

    So I'm sure in the next few months there'll be a review of the book in my blog. Maybe. Assuming I finish it. LOL!

  9. Good luck with Infinite Jest, Satia! God knows I don't have the willpower to read it. :P