Top Ten Books I’ll Probably Never Read

There are a lot of books I doubt that I will ever read, but I think these ten make up the ten I’m least likely to read unless forced to by a class…

1. Finnegan’s Wake, or anything else by James Joyce, because ugh. Also, because this word appears on Page 1 (hyphen added by me): “Bababadalgharaghtakamminarronnkonnbronntonnerronntuonn-thunntrovarrhounawnskawntoohoohoordenenthurnuk” Yes.

finnegans-wake-James+Joyce2. American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis, because fifteen years after seeing the movie, I still wish I could burn it from my memory.

3. The Faerie Queen by Edmund Spenser, because it’s an “incomplete epic poem” and all three of those descriptions make me cringe.

4. The Aeneid by Virgil, which to be fair I may or may not have already read in college, which shows you how much I enjoyed it, if I read it, and/or how strongly I’ve avoided coming in contact with this book in the time since. Though really, anything of this kind would be avoided.

5. Lady Chatterley’s Lover by D.H. Lawrence, which to be fair I’ve actually read 95% of, stopping only about thirty pages from the end because I just didn’t care how the book turned out. I’ve never once in the fourteen years since then been tempted to go back.

neuromancer6. Neuromancer by William Gibson, because me and drugs do not mix.

7. any of the Sherlock Holmes books/stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, because I think Sherlock himself is an a$$.

8. Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger, because every time I’ve tried to read something by her, I’ve passionately disliked it…

9. Maus Part II by Art Spiegelman, because Part I didn’t work for me, and I never felt the need to read on.

10. Don Quixote Book II by Miguel de Cervantes, for the same reasons as Maus Part II. This is despite Book II sounding like it would be far more interesting and engaging than Book I.

What’s on your list of absolutely not? And are there any of these you think I should bend on? Even if it’s not likely to convince me? Ha! 🙂


Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

About Amanda

Writing. Family. Books. Crochet. Fitness. Fashion. Fun. Not necessarily in that order. Note: agender (she/her).
This entry was posted in Book Talk and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

17 Responses to Top Ten Books I’ll Probably Never Read

  1. readerbuzz says:

    I think that is a powerfully good reason for not reading Finnegan’s Wake.

    Here’s mine!


  2. Jeanne says:

    You should read Araby, because it’s a very short story and haunting. I once reproduced the entire story on my blog, interspersed with my reactions to it.


    • Amanda says:

      I read about 2/3rds of Dubliners back in 2001. Either it was a case of “too young to understand” or “too ignorant to understand” or “I hate James Joyce,” but in any case, I hated every single story I read… :/ Sometimes I think I should try again. Then I look at that word from Finnegan…


      • Jeanne says:

        I didn’t immediately like Joyce when I started reading him, and I’ve still not read Finnegan’s Wake. Some of the phrases and sentences, though, crept into my consciousness and began to echo there.


  3. Lindsey says:

    You are so good at putting aside books that aren’t working. I think I would force myself to finish Lady Chatterly’s Lover out of some perverse sense of duty. It’s a thing I’m working on…

    Joyce is definitely tricky and weird. I’m not sure you are missing much by avoiding that one!


    • Amanda says:

      I believe Lady Chatterly is the FIRST book I ever put aside. Even then, it was a rarely kind of thing. It was only a few years ago that I taught myself to put books down, no matter how far into them I’d gotten.


  4. Lindsay says:

    You’re not missing out on “Her Fearful Symmetry.” I read it several years ago and didn’t really enjoy it! I did, however, really like “Maus.” I had to read the first book for a college class and enjoyed it (if you can say that about a Holocaust book?) so much I bought the second book.


    • Amanda says:

      I think for me, it’s just an aversion to most talking-animals stories, and I didn’t like the art. I’m not a huge GN fan to begin with. That didn’t help.


  5. Trish says:

    I don’t remember the drugs from Neuromancer but that may have been because I was too busy trying to wrap my mind around the rest of it. I read it in a post-modern grad course and enjoyed it, but it was a ride!

    I read Maus as one volume so it’s hard for me to separate the two in my mind. I do remember the second half being a bit more personal and powerful than the first?



    • Amanda says:

      I’m not sure if there are actual drugs in Neuromancer, or drugs unique to the book, or just the subject to addiction that is a metaphor for drugs. Either way, the people who know my particular phobias say I should avoid it at all costs.


  6. I also won’t read American Psycho the movie was gruesome enough, and I know theres much worse waiting in the book.
    Check out my Top Ten Tuesday


  7. olduvai says:

    I am truly amazed that you read 95% of Lady Chatterley’s Lover and put it down. I often have a compulsion to read things to the end (or at least scan through it!)… sad but true


    • Amanda says:

      Like I said in a response above, that one was probably the first book I ever set aside. I set it aside after I realized I just didn’t care one bit what happened to the characters or the story. I wasn’t even remotely curious, not even enough to skim!


  8. You’re not missing anything with Her Fearful Symmetry. It was amazing and then the ending royally sucked and I regretted all the time I spent with it. I did not like Lady Chatterly’s Lover either. Long-winded crap if you ask me. I agree Sherlock is a bit of an ass, but he is there for Watson. And I kind of feel like really big brainacs are all kind of asses. I have an above-average IQ but people who are Mensa level that I have met have all been egomaniacs and narcissists. Maybe it’s just the ones I met.


    • Amanda says:

      I don’t mind condescension – Nabokov often has very pompous narrators. I think it’s that mixed with something else, like perhaps the fact that Sherlock’s deductions don’t really make a lot of sense, or at least make a lot of assumptions that only work because the author chooses to make them work. If a real detective worked that way, he would be wrong most of the time, and it bothers me that Sherlock gets to be right all the time.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.