Monday, September 17, 2012

Musing Monday...How Do I Hate Thee...Let Me Count The Ways.

Let's check out this weeks Musing Monday question, as always, from the desk of MizB at Should Be Reading...

This week’s musing — courtesy of– asks…
What is your least favorite book? Why?

I'm sorry, I don't mean to sound whiny, but didn't we answer this recently?
I already put the name of the book out of my mind, but I do remember it had a bug on the cover. A very big bug.
Maybe a fly.

So, let's look at a few things that make me dislike a book.

I think a good book needs at least three things. Maybe four.
A good plot...a story worth telling. Which is maybe why I hate most memoirs. I am sure the author of ever memoirs think their life is a tale worth telling, but I find they are usually not. At least not to me.
Second, I want some good characters. Interesting, a bit different. Conflicted and flawed is often good.
Lastly, I want it to be well written.
Is that too much to ask?
OK, I am no writer. I am not terrible, at least semi-literate, but not great. Nevertheless, like that famous quote about porn, I know good writing when I see it. Sadly, it seems a fair number of people that call themselves writers do not have that same talent. Read it...does that sound good? If not, try again. And again...and again.
Harsh? Maybe, but true.

Now, a book can be pretty good even if they do not excel in all of these things. Some great characters will make me overlook a flawed plot. Beautiful writing can allow me to forgive a lot. But I have my limits and I am amazed by the number of books that get published..even by like real Big Name publishers...that fall far short in one or more of these.
What was my fourth thing? I hate a book that rambles on and on, that could have gained so much from a liberal use of the Big Red Pen. Cut. Cut. Then cut some more.
Oh editors, where are you?

Do you have something that really makes you dislike a book? Care to name you most hated book?

OK, on a totally unrelated subject, I was reading a New York Times review of the latest Lee Child's book, called "A Wanted Man". By the way, they liked it, which is not the point I want to make.
What upset me was reading in that review that there is shortly going to be a movie out based on Child's 9th book, "One Shot", which I read. Good book. So a movie based on it is a fine thing and we have not reached the issue yet.

The issue is that they have cast Tom Cruise as Child's famous hero, Jack Reacher. Now, if you are at all familiar with the books, you know that Reacher is described at being 6 foot 5 inches tall, and who, as the Times review mentions, looks like a "gorilla with its face smashed in." He is a presence of a man. He is a force.
Just like Tome Cruise, right. NOT! What is he, 5'2"? With lifts. Ok, maybe 5' 6".
Really what the heck are they thinking??
I am not even that much of a Reacher fan, not like some I could name (..Sandy, are you out there?) but even I find this offensive. Why, oh why do they do this sort of thing? Yes, Cruise is a big name. Made lots of big movies over the years. But this is such terrible casting!
So wrong....

OK, I am done ranting.
For this week. :-)


  1. Yeah, I'm out here. Don't even get me started on the Reacher casting. If I don't control my emotions, I tend to get REALLY bent out of shape. Tom Cruise is the total opposite of everything that is Jack Reacher. I shan't be viewing that film. On a family vacation this summer, we had a good two hour discussion about who we would cast for that movie. I guess it is a moot point. So...I hated Fifty Shades of Grey. With every ounce of my being. I also hated A Reliable Wife. I'm sure there are more if I thought about it.

    1. a two hour discussion...I should have

  2. Oh, I agree about the rambling on and on, I don't need to know every tree in the garden, or every new change of clothes, or how each bite of the food tasted, etc. And Tom Cruise? Need I say more on that one, I think not! Have a great week.

  3. I've discovered that I MUST have plot in my books. The best characters in the world are dull to me unless they do something. I haven't read any Reacher books but I'm not a fan of Tom Cruise so movies with him in it aren't that appealing to me.

  4. Sandy and I spent a good hour together ranting about the Tom Cruise thing! LOL. What I read is that Cruise had the financing, ultimately a very persuasive argument for the role! LOL

  5. the problem is when those bad writers do read their work and still think it's good.. >_<
    I appreciated the rant, thank you! thanks for stopping by today!


  6. Blonde Roots by Evardine Bernadisto - totally ridiculous crap!! TC as Jack Reacher? See previous opinion - what the hell were those casting people smoking?

  7. Sorry, make that Bernadine Evaristo.

    1. not like I was going to go looking for

  8. Oh, I don't like Tom Cruise, so even if he was a physical match, I would avoid this movie just because he's in it. Do you get that I don't like him? lol

    My bugaboo is horrible writing that rambles with lots of grammatical errors (or even just several).


  9. So, I take it no one thing Cruise is a good choice? Yes, I think so. LOL

  10. It is just nuts that they cast Tom Cruise as he is so wildly different than the description of Jack Reacher (which has been well established). It isn't like he has dark hair and it should be blond. Or eye color. His entire body type is wrong wrong wrong. It shows no respect for the essence of the character.

    On the "books I hate list": Almost anything by James Patterson, Kane & Abel by Jeffrey Archer and Too Fat to Fish by Artie Lange (and those are just off the top of my head).

    1. 'no respect for the essence of the character'...I think that sadly sums up a lot of movies based on books.

  11. I'm chuckling reading all the replies about Tom Cruise.

    1. Tom does seems to elicit a lot of strong opinions.


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