Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Correcting "The Corrections"

I am 85% finished with a book that I am disliking and am now only reading it to complete it. It was an Amazon Kindle freebie. "Dead Woman Walking: was an innocent woman hanged?" It started out fine, and I enjoyed the imagery of 19th century rough-and-tumble Australian mining towns, but the court testimony chapters killed the momentum of the read. Now I'm reaching for the finish line like God's hand reached for Adam's on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.

But this isn't my worst example. A couple years ago I was reading Jonathan Franzen's highly regarded novel "The Corrections."

I hated it.

I was reading it poolside while on vacation in Riviera Maya a few years ago. Over halfway through the book, I nearly threw my softcover version into the water. "I hate this book!" I told my wife. "I don't care if every single one of these people die a slow and painful death. They're all despicable!"

I refrained from throwing the book in the sea and it returned with us only to find itself donated to St. Vincent de Paul a year later.

I never finished it. Never cared. Although I do wonder: possibly those characters developed a rare and incurable deadly form of toenail fungus that slowly rendered their ability to control normal bodily functions and they defecated themselves to a miserable and malodorous death?

In other words: Greatest. Finish. Ever.

Probably not, but at least one can wishful think.

What's the farthest you've ever read a book then stopped? What was the book and why did you stop?

P.S. - Don't include The Bible. I'm still on page one myself. ;)

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