Author Topic: well, THAT was the worst book ever!  (Read 128896 times)

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snowflake

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Re: well, THAT was the worst book ever!
« Reply #1785 on: January 16, 2013, 05:38:55 PM »
I also really really disliked The Alchemist. That waste of printer's ink was a moderately funny joke rolled out into novel length studded with pseudo-wisdom and wibbly-wobbly magic nonsense, trying to be all deep and this-will-change-your-lifey. I could not understand what people saw in it.

If you have ever read 1001 Nights, you have the whole premise of the Alchemist in ONE NIGHT.  Seriously, of all the tangents, and extras, and stories within-stories, and descriptions of wedding dresses that drag out those tales, the story of the Alchemist takes one night.  (I think Aladdin takes about 50)  You don't even have to read the flowery, translated-in-Victorian-England version either.  It appears in pretty much every child's retelling.

Not to mention that in the 1001 nights it's told in a fun way.  Reading the Alchemist was pretty much like watching an episode of Saturday Night Live and discovering that all the skits are unfunny commentaries written by a philosophy 101 student who thinks he's the next Kafka.

But then again, I have loved everything Tolstoy wrote so I can't be all that fun.

Nibsey

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Re: well, THAT was the worst book ever!
« Reply #1786 on: January 16, 2013, 06:14:01 PM »
It starts with two sisters, the main character being Frederica, nicknamed Freddy, who rode a gypsy cob horse (a friend of mine told me this breed didn't even exist in the 17th century.) Not to mention this horse is supposedly Frederica's to ride just for fun.  Her family is a very poor Irish Catholic family, so that they had enough money to even own a work horse, let alone one just for their daughter to ride for fun? A breed that didn't even exist at the time? Hm.

Well then Freddy, a tomboy, learns her papa, whom she is supposedly VERY close to, is caught by the British and made to go serve in a war and then Freddy, her sisters and mother go to live with relatives. 

Well the major thing that jump out at me is that both of the above were illegal at the time. Due to the Penal laws, a catholic couldn't own a horse of greater value than five pounds(which could maybe get you a nag) or be in any army.
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Piratelvr1121

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Re: well, THAT was the worst book ever!
« Reply #1787 on: January 16, 2013, 06:29:05 PM »
Oh really? I didn't know that about the penal law, though it does not surprise me at all.   

I get the feeling the author of this story heard a little bit of Oliver Cromwell and didn't bother doing any more research beyond that. 
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Dr. F.

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Re: well, THAT was the worst book ever!
« Reply #1788 on: January 16, 2013, 06:57:09 PM »
It starts with two sisters, the main character being Frederica, nicknamed Freddy, who rode a gypsy cob horse (a friend of mine told me this breed didn't even exist in the 17th century.) Not to mention this horse is supposedly Frederica's to ride just for fun.  Her family is a very poor Irish Catholic family, so that they had enough money to even own a work horse, let alone one just for their daughter to ride for fun? A breed that didn't even exist at the time? Hm.


I'll forgive the breed thing. Gypsy cob is more of a description than a breed. There *is* a breed named that now, but it was bred from horses with that description. Cob means short-legged and chunky, they tend to be strong, sure-footed (low center of gravity) and cheap to feed. I don't know for sure, but I imagine gypsies (as they were known then) would tend to keep them to pull carts, etc. In those days, a gypsy cob would be a fairly "low-class" type of riding horse, as opposed to a thoroughbred (also a term used well before the breed was defined).

I haven't read the book, but the rest sounds pretty iffy.

Lady Snowdon

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Re: well, THAT was the worst book ever!
« Reply #1789 on: January 16, 2013, 08:20:50 PM »
John Ringo's "Ghost".  To start off, we are introduced to the main character, Mike, who is walking around UGA and thinking nasty thoughts about how he could kidnap coeds (and what he would do to said coeds when he'd kidnapped them).  This is okay though, because it's been some time since he's gotten lucky with a woman.  Then he sees a coed actually get kidnapped, and he goes off to chase the kidnappers down, and somehow this leads to him finding a kidnapping ring, and stowing away on a plane to try and rescue the kidnapped coeds.  The very convoluted story then continues with him ending up in the Middle East, where we are treated to lots of lovely stereotyping regarding Muslims and Arabs.  Moving forward, Mike finds the kidnapped girls have been kidnapped specifically so they can be tortured to death on live TV as some kind of weird punishment against the Great Satan America.  Of course, Mike rescues the girls (with some really disgusting thoughts regarding how much he enjoys watching the torture), all the girls fall a little bit in love with him due to his misogynistic attitude and conservative mindset, and a few even seek him out a few years later for a "thanks for saving my life and showing me the right way to be" talk. 

It's the first book in the "Paladin of Shadows" series, and the series just goes down from there.  Mike acquires a harem; he doesn't want one, but it has to work out that way, so might as well enjoy it!  Then he acquires a harem mistress.  Then he starts exercising the droit du seigneur on the people whose land he now owns, on the pretext that he can give the brides a dowry and help make the people more prosperous!  It's just all too much.

LEMon

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Re: well, THAT was the worst book ever!
« Reply #1790 on: January 16, 2013, 09:09:10 PM »
John Ringo's "Ghost".  To start off, we are introduced to the main character, Mike, who is walking around UGA and thinking nasty thoughts about how he could kidnap coeds (and what he would do to said coeds when he'd kidnapped them).  This is okay though, because it's been some time since he's gotten lucky with a woman.  Then he sees a coed actually get kidnapped, and he goes off to chase the kidnappers down, and somehow this leads to him finding a kidnapping ring, and stowing away on a plane to try and rescue the kidnapped coeds.  The very convoluted story then continues with him ending up in the Middle East, where we are treated to lots of lovely stereotyping regarding Muslims and Arabs.  Moving forward, Mike finds the kidnapped girls have been kidnapped specifically so they can be tortured to death on live TV as some kind of weird punishment against the Great Satan America.  Of course, Mike rescues the girls (with some really disgusting thoughts regarding how much he enjoys watching the torture), all the girls fall a little bit in love with him due to his misogynistic attitude and conservative mindset, and a few even seek him out a few years later for a "thanks for saving my life and showing me the right way to be" talk. 

It's the first book in the "Paladin of Shadows" series, and the series just goes down from there.  Mike acquires a harem; he doesn't want one, but it has to work out that way, so might as well enjoy it!  Then he acquires a harem mistress.  Then he starts exercising the droit du seigneur on the people whose land he now owns, on the pretext that he can give the brides a dowry and help make the people more prosperous!  It's just all too much.
Oh John Ringo NO!
There is a review 
http://hradzka.livejournal.com/194753.html
that goes into detail.  NSFW (I believe.  Haven't reread it all through again yet.)

pierrotlunaire0

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Re: well, THAT was the worst book ever!
« Reply #1791 on: January 17, 2013, 12:15:32 AM »
Portrait of a Killer: Jack the Ripper--Case Closed by Patricia Cornwell, a sloppy, insulting,  character assassination of artist Walter Sickert written by a raging egomaniac. Just what is wrong with this book? Lets see....


* Patricia Cornwell is not a historian, detective, art expert, or even a forensic scientist (she worked in the office of a Chief Medical Examiner as a technical writer and computer analyst), yet seems to believe she's an expert on everything.
* Cornwell ignoring evidence from several sources that puts Sickert in Paris during the Ripper murders.
* Cornwell stating as fact that Sickert's manhood was mangled by a fistula, therefore was impotent and childless. There is plenty of evidence that Sickert's manhood was in fine working order and he possibly fathered several illegitimate children.
* Cornwell whines about there were no blood tests or blood spatter analysis done for a murder victim in 1888. (1) The fact that human blood has different types wasn't discovered until 1901. (2) Tests to distinguish human blood from animal blood didn't come around until 1901. (3) The earliest reference of blood spatter analysis was written in 1894, and the meaning of blood spatter patterns wasn't studied until 1939.
* Jean Overton Fuller wrote a book about Sickert being Jack the Ripper back in 1990. The theory was debunked back then too.
* Cornwell laughably claims that Sickert wrote *all* of the Ripper letters (around 600!) while disguising his handwriting spelling on some of them and has DNA evidence on one of them. Ripperologists consider all the letters to be hoaxes and her so-called is mitochondrial DNA. Even if Cornwell did manage to get rock-solid DNA evidence, it would only prove that Sickert wrote a hoax letter.
* The book is sloppy and badly written. Cornwell can't seem to a train of thought for more than two pages before changing the subject.

I could go on and on, but read Caleb Carr's skewering in The New York Times or Stephen P. Ryder's problems with the Cornwell's conclusions on Casebook.org.

The only thing this book proves is that Patricia Cornwell is full of herself. Case Closed.
I had so many problems with this book.  What got me was that the only thing approaching real evidence was the DNA found on a stamp on one of the so called Ripper letters.  So called!  And since Sickert was mildly obsessed with the case, all that proves is that he created a hoax.  And on that tiny thread, she huffs and puffs and contorts herself to prove that he is JTR.

NO!
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VorFemme

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Re: well, THAT was the worst book ever!
« Reply #1792 on: January 17, 2013, 09:43:57 AM »
John Ringo's "Ghost".  To start off, we are introduced to the main character, Mike, who is walking around UGA and thinking nasty thoughts about how he could kidnap coeds (and what he would do to said coeds when he'd kidnapped them).  This is okay though, because it's been some time since he's gotten lucky with a woman.  Then he sees a coed actually get kidnapped, and he goes off to chase the kidnappers down, and somehow this leads to him finding a kidnapping ring, and stowing away on a plane to try and rescue the kidnapped coeds.  The very convoluted story then continues with him ending up in the Middle East, where we are treated to lots of lovely stereotyping regarding Muslims and Arabs.  Moving forward, Mike finds the kidnapped girls have been kidnapped specifically so they can be tortured to death on live TV as some kind of weird punishment against the Great Satan America.  Of course, Mike rescues the girls (with some really disgusting thoughts regarding how much he enjoys watching the torture), all the girls fall a little bit in love with him due to his misogynistic attitude and conservative mindset, and a few even seek him out a few years later for a "thanks for saving my life and showing me the right way to be" talk. 

It's the first book in the "Paladin of Shadows" series, and the series just goes down from there.  Mike acquires a harem; he doesn't want one, but it has to work out that way, so might as well enjoy it!  Then he acquires a harem mistress.  Then he starts exercising the droit du seigneur on the people whose land he now owns, on the pretext that he can give the brides a dowry and help make the people more prosperous!  It's just all too much.
Oh John Ringo NO!
There is a review 
http://hradzka.livejournal.com/194753.html
that goes into detail.  NSFW (I believe.  Haven't reread it all through again yet.)


Note to self - do not read this series.
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Winterlight

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Re: well, THAT was the worst book ever!
« Reply #1793 on: January 17, 2013, 12:34:06 PM »
John Ringo's "Ghost".  To start off, we are introduced to the main character, Mike, who is walking around UGA and thinking nasty thoughts about how he could kidnap coeds (and what he would do to said coeds when he'd kidnapped them).  This is okay though, because it's been some time since he's gotten lucky with a woman.  Then he sees a coed actually get kidnapped, and he goes off to chase the kidnappers down, and somehow this leads to him finding a kidnapping ring, and stowing away on a plane to try and rescue the kidnapped coeds.  The very convoluted story then continues with him ending up in the Middle East, where we are treated to lots of lovely stereotyping regarding Muslims and Arabs.  Moving forward, Mike finds the kidnapped girls have been kidnapped specifically so they can be tortured to death on live TV as some kind of weird punishment against the Great Satan America.  Of course, Mike rescues the girls (with some really disgusting thoughts regarding how much he enjoys watching the torture), all the girls fall a little bit in love with him due to his misogynistic attitude and conservative mindset, and a few even seek him out a few years later for a "thanks for saving my life and showing me the right way to be" talk. 

It's the first book in the "Paladin of Shadows" series, and the series just goes down from there.  Mike acquires a harem; he doesn't want one, but it has to work out that way, so might as well enjoy it!  Then he acquires a harem mistress.  Then he starts exercising the droit du seigneur on the people whose land he now owns, on the pretext that he can give the brides a dowry and help make the people more prosperous!  It's just all too much.
Oh John Ringo NO!
There is a review 
http://hradzka.livejournal.com/194753.html
that goes into detail.  NSFW (I believe.  Haven't reread it all through again yet.)

I love this review so much, but I will never, ever read the books. And yes, it's probably going to be NSFW as you shriek in horrified laughter.
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PeterM

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Re: well, THAT was the worst book ever!
« Reply #1794 on: January 17, 2013, 04:49:06 PM »
John Ringo's "Ghost".

Oh John Ringo NO!
There is a review 
http://hradzka.livejournal.com/194753.html
that goes into detail.  NSFW (I believe.  Haven't reread it all through again yet.)


Note to self - do not read this series.

Oh, it's not that bad.

Actually, okay, it is that bad, but there's a pretty good series of adventure yarns to go along with the crap. Kind of like the way John Norman's Gor books were pretty decent pulp adventure that were unfortunately saddled with a lot of "Women are natural slaves" garbage.

To be honest, Ringo's occasional political rants bother me much more than the more blatantly idiotic stuff in this series. The man's not good at subtle. But why should he be, when what he does sells so well?

I will say I've never paid for any of the books in this series. I got most of them as free e-books, and the latest one that just came out from the library. He's added the dreaded co-author and it definitely wasn't as good as the earlier books. The offensive elements are still there, but both better and worse depending on which scenes you're talking about.

Diane AKA Traska

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Re: well, THAT was the worst book ever!
« Reply #1795 on: February 07, 2013, 12:19:21 PM »
Have you ever read a novel that was SO bad that you know you should stop reading it, but there's a sick fascination with it anyway?

I'm currently reading a Star Trek: Deep Space Nine novel, and in the first thirty-odd pages:

- O'Brien was slapped in irons for ripping a hole in a Cardassian ship in dock, against the express wishes of the Cardassian engineer
- Kira is seen to be listening (and it's implied giving heed to) recordings of a Bajoran terrorist who's calling for the expulsion of the Federation
- Sisko implying stating that the only way he'll hand over control of the station to Bajor is if he deems them worthy
- Bashir hitting on anything that moves, including Major Kira, twice in the same meeting
- Odo casually discussing the particulars of his regeneration cycle with a Cardassian Gul, and letting the Gul watch him while he regenerates
- The Gul in question, in Odo's quarters, smoking a pipe.  Filled with tobacco.  That he purchased from Quark.  That he got from Earth

It's like a train wreck.  There's still over 150 pages to go, so I'm considering starting a list of all the ways this book fails.
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pierrotlunaire0

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Re: well, THAT was the worst book ever!
« Reply #1796 on: February 07, 2013, 01:05:49 PM »
I once had a book of movie trivia that was so WRONG.  Frederic March's full name was Fred Eric March, and the like.  Why would you make up something like that?  I have never seen such a mess in my life.

I think I went through it, making a list of all the errors.  This was before the internet, but still, I was a high school senior and had better movie reference material than this person did.
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Twik

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Re: well, THAT was the worst book ever!
« Reply #1797 on: February 07, 2013, 01:33:45 PM »
I once had a book of movie trivia that was so WRONG.  Frederic March's full name was Fred Eric March, and the like.  Why would you make up something like that?  I have never seen such a mess in my life.

I think I went through it, making a list of all the errors.  This was before the internet, but still, I was a high school senior and had better movie reference material than this person did.

I presume after the internet, the person who wrote this proceeded to write those lists of misinformation like, "The name 'trench mouth' comes from the infection people got from eating off dirty dishes called trenchers."
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