Saturday, June 26, 2010

Books I loved but would never read again

Sometimes you get a book that’s just so heartbreaking, so disturbing or just so downright depressing that you never want to read again. Not because the writing is atrocious, or the story is boring and bland, because let’s face it, no book that can leave you that emotionally crippled for days can be called bad. The book was amazing, but it’s precisely because you never want to relive those awful moments that affected you so deeply that you’d never reread it again. Of course, I'm a firm believer in the happy ending and pretty emotionally frail in general (I cried while watching Pokemon once for crying out loud) so you may or may not agree with my choices.

The Pact by Jodi Picoult
I struggled incredibly to get through The Pact.  I hated all the characters and yet I felt so much sympathy towards them. The situations they were left in were awful- honestly having someone who was your best friend, lover and basically family die itself would be one of the worst things in the world, never mind being accused of and convinced that you were the one to kill them. I don’t do the story justice of course- there is so much more to it than that. It’s a crazy whirlwind of emotions all scrambled up into one very good book. I cried, I laughed and I wanted so much to throw the book across the room at times. I went days were I couldn’t bear to pick it up anymore because what was happening was just too horrible. And in the end, when I finally finished it, I was left thinking about it for days. Probably one of the most powerful, beautiful and tragic books I have ever read.

The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson
I was drawn to this one not only because of the hype but because stories of past lives and romance have also had an appeal to me. I expected an epic love story and a happy ending. What I got was an engrossing disturbing tale of addiction, abuse and tragedy every which way. The scenes of burn debridement completely grossed me out and the MC’s sex and drug addiction surprised me completely. The tale of the couple's past life was so tragic, and the ending left me confused and emotionally unsatisfied. It was a very different book to the ones I read normally and, despite not being able to put it down after I started, given a choice again, I would probably not have picked it up at all. In the words of my sister after she finished it and handed it back to me- “Next time can you please not give me something so…haunting?”

The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan
I’ve already mentioned how depressing this book was in my review a few weeks ago, but I figured it deserved its place on the list. Unlike so many other dystopian novels, this one is just devoid of hope. There is no movement against The Sisterhood or the Consecrated like there is against the government or whatever higher, evil power like there is in most other dystopian novels. There is no great love story shining against the bleakness of the world. It’s just a miserable, miserable tale of fighting for one's existence. One in which most fail.


  1. Oh... The Gargoyle. I have heard that it's great but have yet to read it!

  2. I know what you mean- TFOHAT was completely draining, and I definitely won't read it again for quite a while!

  3. I hope you will read Carrie Ryan's next book, The Dead Tossed Waves. It is a follow up to The Forrest of Hand And Teeth, and I liked it even better than the first. Yes, I agree that The Forrest of Hands and Teeth was mostly a depressing book, but I loved it. I probably loved it because it was so different from what I expected and that it didn't end quite the way I had hoped it would. I am going to be curious to find out how Ms. Ryan wraps the whole story up.

    By the way, cool first name! I share it with you and there aren't many who do. (at least not in my neck of the woods!)