Friday, November 12, 2010

Literary Blog Hop: Difficult read

Literary Blog Hop is hosted by The Blue Bookcase. If you features book reviews of literary fiction, classic literature, and general literary discussion, you too can join in!

What is the most difficult literary work you've ever read? What made it so difficult?

First that comes into mind is Ulysses by James Joyce. I couldn't read beyond a few pages. The writing was so uninteresting that I don't think I will ever pick it up.

Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf is another one. It was really very difficult to keep up with the stream of consciousness thing. I gave it up after 50+ pages...

Next is, War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy. Pages and pages of historical stuff is enough to put off any reader! However, I did finish it and found my slogging well worth it!

18 comments:

cheryl@bookaddict4real said...

Hi I applaud you for reading "War and Peace" I think it makes for well rounded reading and thanks for stopping by my blog@bookaddict4real

mywordlyobsessions said...

Those are the big 3. I also mentioned 'Mrs. Dalloway'. Stream of Consciousness is probably the most difficult genre to read.

Well done for getting through War and Peace!

Susan said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog. My husband managed to read Ulysses, so I feel sort-of challenged to get to it some day, but I'm in no rush. War and Peace, though, I should like.

Ellen said...

War and Peace is on my list, so I'm happy you found it a worthwhile read. For the longest time I was intimidated by Anna Karenina, but once I got into I realized that, occasional digressions and all, it was one of the best books I've ever read. War & Peace seems a little more intimidating, though....

always have felt i should read joyce since he's such an 'important' writer, but i barely managed to drag myself through portrait, so i'm not sure that i can (or should) read ulysses.

IngridLola said...

Yes, three notoriously difficult books! I so glad you finished War and Peace though. :)

Loni said...

War and Peace has been staring at me from my bookshelf for a couple years. I WANT to read it, but it's gigantic!

Mrs. Dalloway is worth another try, in my opinion. From what I've heard, it's actually better the second time around.

Thanks for visiting my blog!

JoAnn said...

It took me three tries (over 25 years), but I finally read Mrs. Dalloway and really liked it! Will get to W&P eventually, but doubt I'll tackle Ulysses.

Jillian said...

Wow! All those are on my TBR list. (Yikes!) ;-)

Christopher said...

I am glad you finished War and Peace, while it is long, it is quite readable. It really portrays the mind-set of the Russian people during the period of the Napoleonic wars too. More importantly, it is a wonderful story about human nature. It is one of my top-five most favorite novels of all time.

I also have to say that Virginia Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway is, in my humble opinion, her most accessible novel. Others may differ from me, but I found it relatively easy sledding and enjoyed it immensely.

Good posting, my friend, and have yourself a nice weekend. Cheers! Chris

parrish lantern said...

Love Joyce, not read Woolf, will have to change that.
Thanks
Parrish

Rose City Reader said...

All good choices. I ended up liking Ulysses, but I also chose a Joyce book as my most difficult. My pick was Finnegans Wake.

Rose City Reader

readerbuzz said...

I've never tried a single Russian. The size of the books alone are quite intimidating.

Here's my post:
http://readerbuzz.blogspot.com/2010/11/enchante-from-literary-blog-hop.html

Erin said...

Great picks! I haven't even attempted Ulysses or War and Peace. I got through Mrs. Dalloway because I had to read it for school, and while I did, ultimately, enjoy it, it was a tough book to read.

Orhedea said...

Hi! Am hopping by. I love War and Peace, but must agree with you on difficult. Never read Mrs. Dalloway though...

Melanie said...

It really seems like this topic has become a Woolf vs Joyce, winner take all for the most difficult books! While i have no interest in reading Joyce, War and Peace and more V. Woolf are both things i intend to read.

NancyO said...

You're definitely one up on me! I've never even opened War and Peace.

Alyce said...

I enjoyed War and Peace, but did get tired of the parts where the narrator (or author) preached his philosophy. The rest of the book was worth the effort though.

I completely agree about Ulysses. I hated that the book is hard to understand just for the sake of being hard to understand. It seems pointless.

stacybuckeye said...

I was glad I made it through War & Peace too. It was worth it.