Monday, July 5, 2010

The worst book ever

The blog Booking Through Thursday asks for this:

Name a book or author that you truly wanted to love but left you disappointed. (And, of course, explain why.)

I'm going to answer this with the worst book I ever read (this was many many years ago): Flowers in the Attic.

My sister is an avid reader who can devour a book in an hour or two. Growing up I frequently read her castoffs. This was one of those. It's about kids who live in the attic and have a very mean grandmother. I remember the author V.C. Andrews used the word lugubrious a lot. The characterization of females was so horrible I assumed the author had to be a man. Instead I discovered that Andrews was a woman who grew up in a wheelchair and felt, I suppose, a lot of the isolation those darn kids in the attic felt. She just wasn't able to get it down on paper in a believable fashion. I forced myself to finish reading the book, just so I could always note it as the worst book ever.

As a writer, I hesitate to rag on on a living author, but Andrews is resting in lugubrious peace. The worst thing about Andrews? She died and yet continued to pump out books. A ghostwriter took up the franchise and channeled her lugubrious ghost.

1 comment:

jayiin mistaya said...

The worst - absolute worst book - I have ever read or had read to me is Brutus the Swamp Man by Larry McCollum.

You should go read it. Just because you'll suddenly appreciate even the worst student writing so much better.

First line of the book:

"In the swampy backlands of Louisiana, far from the town of Baton Rouge, where the cold-blooded reptiles roamed free, lived a family known as the family who had lived off of the land and had died and left their only son to survive on his own."

It gets worse from there.