Books You Finished That You Wish You Hadn't

Discussion in 'Fantasy' started by Sneaky Burrito, Jun 26, 2017.

  1. Sneaky Burrito

    Sneaky Burrito Crazy Cat Lady Staff Member

    I have apparently finished a lot of other people's DNFs, as well as some other books I spent precious days of my life on that I will never get back. These are some I really regret:
    • Entire Sword of Truth series (no further comment needed)
    • Pretty much every Shannara book I've read (no further comment needed)
    • Pretty much everything by Mercedes Lackey I've read (why did it take me so long to realize these were awful, and that she writes the same book over and over again?)
    • Most of the Saga of Recluce (see Mercedes Lackey above)
    • Book of the New Sun (all four of them)
    • Books 2 and 3 of Southern Reach by Jeff Vandermeer (liked the first one a lot; 2 and 3 left me unsatisfied)
    • The Eyes of God series by John Marco (this could've been one good book but instead it was three long books bloated with filler that were in dire need of a good editor)
    • Some series by Sara Douglass that I can't even remember the name of now (ah, Google tells me it was Darkglass Mountain)
    • Chronicles of Narnia (overt and sometimes offensive religious symbolism that I totally didn't get until I reread these in my 20s due to my non-religious upbringing)
    • Belgariad (I might've liked this when I was younger but it was not a good one to pick up in my 30s)
    I'm unsure whether to put Peter V. Brett's books in this list. As with many of you, I thought the first one was pretty good, but got utterly tired of all the pseudo-Arab stuff in subsequent books, as well as Leesha's behavior. I keep hoping he'll pull out all the stops for the last book, but I kind of doubt it at this point. I find myself not caring any more about the outcome.

    I read a lot of this before discovering BFB (though the Vandermeer books were this year). I notice a few of mine are on the Worst Fantasy Books list from the main site. Do you all have your own lists like this?
  2. Ryan W. Mueller

    Ryan W. Mueller Ran bridges next to Kaladin

    I'll keep this to SFF books (to eliminate crap I had to read for school).

    Absolution Gap by Alastair Reynolds (SF).. I kind of liked the first two books in his Revelation Space trilogy. Then I hated the ending so much I wish I hadn't read it at all.

    A Fire upon the Deep by Vernor Vinge (SF). This book gets so much acclaim, but I found most of it frustrating and boring.

    The Darkness that Comes Before by R. Scott Bakker (Fantasy). I picked this one up because it gets so much praise on the main site. I found it to be a book full of characters I hated in a world that could be completely destroyed without me shedding a single tear.

    Crossroads of Twilight by Robert Jordan (Fantasy). In fairness, I love the series as a whole, but this book was just plain brutal. I kind of wish I'd just read a plot summary and then gone on. I'm glad I pushed through and finished the series, though. Loved the last three books.

    Lord Foul's Bane by Stephen R. Donaldson (Fantasy). After the rape scene, I just couldn't like this book at all. I did eventually finish the series and somewhat liked it by the end, but I kind of wish I hadn't read it at all because I disliked the first book so much.

    Dragonflight by Anne McCaffrey (Fantasy or SF). A boring book filled with boring characters doing boring things. Even her dragons were boring to me.

    The Etched City by K.J. Bishop (Fantasy). This one has been described as The Dark Tower meets Perdido Street Station. Both of those, in my opinion, are much better stories. This one completely fell flat for me.

    That's pretty much all the SFF books I've ever given two stars. As you can see, I like most of what I read.
  3. Sneaky Burrito

    Sneaky Burrito Crazy Cat Lady Staff Member

    I didn't stop reading after the first book, but I find nothing to disagree with in that statement. I've read the entire first trilogy and the first book in the second trilogy and I haven't even bought any of the books after that.

    Here's more from me:

    Anything and everything by K.J. Parker (The Company and The Engineer Trilogy are the ones I've read); all the characters are class A selfish jerks, there's no magic (it always felt to me like they should've been historical fiction, but the author didn't want to bother to do any research), etc.
  4. TomTB

    TomTB The Master Tweeter Staff Member

    Chronicles of the Unhewn Throne.

    Quite enjoyed parts of the first book, but I hated the series come the end of book 3. It put me off picking up another epic style fantasy book for quite a time.

    Same with Blood Song. Trope ridden tripe, as far as I'm concerned. I'd learnt my lesson by this point though and haven't gone near the sequels.
  5. Davis Ashura

    Davis Ashura Is a wondrous friend of modest Kruppe

    For me, it's grim dark books that aim for the grimmest and darkest with extensive visualization of how awful the world is and how anti-social the 'heroes' are. I just can't get into those and regret every time I read one. Those kind of books make me want to take a mental shower.

    Thomas Covenant did that to me, and I hated him, but I loved the Land, and growing up often wished I could live there during a time when Lord Foul was slumbering.
  6. Sneaky Burrito

    Sneaky Burrito Crazy Cat Lady Staff Member

    Not gonna lie, I was definitely unsatisfied with books 2 and 3 of both of those series as well, after promising starts.
  7. Alucard

    Alucard In the name of the Pizza Lord. Charge! Staff Member

    Narnia. Especially The Last Battle which reads as a propaganda piece that has very little to do with the story. But I wanted to read all of it to see what this 'exceptional' piece of children's fantasy is all about. Now that I did that I am so relived that I never have to go near those books ever again. They're terrible.
  8. Bierschneeman

    Bierschneeman Journeyed there and back again

    the first book of the Chronicles of Amber.. its just so incredibly bad

    Elminster Making of a Mage


    and everything else I hated but read
  9. jo zebedee

    jo zebedee Journeyed there and back again

    Sherilyn Kenyon. Can't remember the name. Utterly hated it - head hopping had me wailing, it was just ... tripe :(
  10. ABatch

    ABatch Ran bridges next to Kaladin

    Years ago, I read a fantasy novel I picked up in Barnes and Noble. It was stunningly boring and long. I read the whole thing, and to this day I'll never know why. Wish I could tell you its title, but I think it gave me PTSD and I can't remember anymore.
  11. Maark Abbott

    Maark Abbott Journeyed there and back again

    Wank of Kings
    Book 1 of that Cinda Williams Chima series with a sceptre on the cover
    Every BH @ KJA Dune book that wasn't a House Prequel, excluding the three newest because THEY DON'T EXIST
  12. Peat

    Peat Journeyed there and back again

    Generally no. I'm happily married to the principle of ruthlessness when it comes to not reading books I'm not enjoying.

    But there was something not so long ago where I did read all the way to the end and that was all "Wait, why did I do that again?" and I can't remember what it was now. Gonna drive me crazy now.
  13. Darth Tater

    Darth Tater Journeyed there and back again

    I'm glad you finished Sword of Truth. Otherwise I would never have known about the killer chickens! Too funnny. Wasn't there a movie called The Killer Clown Chickens From Outer Space?

    Sorry about tbe PTSD. I can give you the number of the therapist I'm seeing for my own mental disorder (as outlined in DSM VI) Chronicles Of Amberitus. At least they didn't place me in a strait jacket like they did after I Hitchhiked through the Galaxy. Anyone else read The Last Of The Renshai series?

    Even though you forgot the title do you remember what the book was about? Or did it bring on amnesia as well?

  14. ABatch

    ABatch Ran bridges next to Kaladin

    It was one of those interminable "kid is odd, develops amazing wizarding powers, grows up to rule the kingdom" type of books.
  15. Silvion Night

    Silvion Night Sir Readalot Staff Member

    Sounds like a description of my childhood.
  16. ABatch

    ABatch Ran bridges next to Kaladin

    Mine was more like, "Dad is an orc, I'm a hobbit."
  17. Bill Door

    Bill Door Listens to The Unbeliever whine about life

    You read the entire Sword of Truth series? You must be a masochist. I've read a few of the Shannara books and while they aren't some of my favorite I thought they were enjoyable for what they were.

    I don't think there is anything I've finished that I wish I hadn't as everything I've disliked I've just stopped reading. I only got half way through the First Sword of Truth book before I quit that garbage.
  18. Anti_Quated

    Anti_Quated Hired Nicomo Cosca, famed soldier of fortune

    I'm grateful for having had the opportunity to read anything that's crossed my path; even in failing to engage with material from an author that I would never give another chance to, I've at the very least identified certain stylistic proclivities and genre accoutrements that clearly fall outside my tastes. Thus, if naught else, I've learned a little more about my own inclinations and sensibilities as a reader, which will better inform future reading habits, purchases, or otherwise.

    That, and I'm convinced that every novel out there has at least a few fans (even if they don't know it yet) other than the eccentric shut-in or abrasive malcontent that wrote it.
  19. Derk of Derkholm

    Derk of Derkholm Journeyed there and back again

    Well, that kind of narrows it down :D

    What comes to my mind was the last book of "The Dark Tower" as I just felt so cheated after having waited for more than a decade for the last book to come out.
    ... at the top of the dark tower, what happens is ...
    ... it just starts over again with the first scene of the first book. Seriously? o_O
  20. Peat

    Peat Journeyed there and back again

    Stranger of Tempest! That was it.

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