Top Ten Most Intimidating Books/Authors

For more info on this meme go to: The Broke and the Bookish
1. Classic Literature - Classics in general, intimidate me, high on that list would be these 5:
  • Russian Lit (Tolstoy, Dostoyevsky, Nabokov) - Anna Karenina and War and Peace both are massive! And there is the equally massive Lolita. As for Dostoyevsky, I started Crime and Punishment but found my brain unable to cope.   
  • Shakespearean Lit - All the thees and doths and thous is enough to make me crazy. I am thinking of getting one of those No Fear Shakespear books though.
  •  Les Miserables by Victor Hugo - I love love the songs in the movie musical. The story is gripping and haunting. But the movie is what, 2 hours long? While the book is HUGE, and it might take me years to plow through.
  • Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte - I started this last February but ended up stopping after a few pages. The old enlish language is tough, plus, I couldn't keep track of the characters and their relationships to each other.  
  • Moby Dick by Herman Melville - This book is about whaling. Whaling lore and legend. Just hearing my cousin talk about this book made me feel sleepy. Although Captain Ahab sounds brilliantly mad.
2. Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged and or The Fountainhead - I am afraid this might be too philosophical for me. It looks kind of high-brow.

3. Kurt Vonnegaut's Slaughter House 5 - This book appeared or has been quoted in countless movies that got me intrigued but there are two words attached to this novel that drove me to run and hide: postmodern and non-linear narrative. In short, they say it's kinda weird.

4. David Mitchell's Cloud Atlas - I watched the movie adaptation and I did not quite get it. A lot of people at the online reading community I am in seems to love this book to pieces. (Hi TFG Peeps!) And I fear that I just won't get it.

5. J.R.R Tolkien's Silmarillion - I love The Hobbit and LOTR but they were never easy reads. But I am even more wary of The Silmarillion because it's less adventure and magic and more straight up, no-nonsense LOTR lore.   

7. Haruki Murakami - Murakami was described as "among the world's greatest living novelists" by The Guardian. And a lot of people seem to really love this guy. So I read Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman and I did not jump up and down over it. I liked one of the short stories, maybe two. Ever since then, I have been afraid of trying another because what if I don't like it still? And not liking the work of "one of the world's greatest novelists" makes me a complete noob. Hee. 

8. Salman Rushdie - Okay, I am very proud to say that I finished Midnight's Children! If you haven't seen it, it's a massive book. But honestly, reading it was a strain, most of the time. It was an arduous task. And in the end, the whole story was lost on me. I did not get it. I have a feeling that all Rushdies are just too big for me to comprehend. Still, I finished Midnight's Children! Just don't ask me what it's about because I have no clue. Haha.

9. Gabriel Garcia Marquez - Started with One Hundred Years of Solitude and I felt like I aged a hundred and I still did not make a dent on the book. I don't know if i have it in me to pick it up again or any of his other works.

10. Stephen King - I am not a big fan of the horror genre in general, and also mostly because of the movie IT, which I happen to catch a glimpse of when I was about 5 years old. I did not even finish the whole thing. and yet IT gave me nightmares and became the reason why I do not like clowns. (I also had our wind-up clown toys removed from our room after that. Hihi.) Then there was Children of the Corn! Aieeee!


  1. Wuthering Heights -- I stopped after several chapters too and until now my copy is collecting dust on the shelf, haha! But then again, I'm not that a big fan of classics, so. :D

    I have yet to read Cloud Atlas, but I must say that I am more intimidated by the volume than the plot. Plus, I haven't watched the movie so I don't have any expectations except for the ravings of TFG people. :)

    1. I got off to a good start with Wuthering Heights sana, but then it was short lived. My eyes started glazing, soon enough. Hee. :)

      The premise of Cloud Atlas, although, seems pretty cool and intriguing to me, I am more worried really about how it is written. Various but interrelated stories, each told in a different narrative style! Baka hindi ko ma-gets. Lalo na at hindi ko talaga na gets yung movie. Haha! :D

  2. Urgh! I don't think I'll EVER read Stephen Kings' books. My friend could read that like overnight. I think he must be a machine or something.

    Here's my Top 10

    1. They really do say he writes great horror-suspense stories. But that just isn't my genre. I scare easily. *cluck cluck* :D

  3. 1, 2, 10 are all on my list. The classics always get to me. I would like to read them but they are intimidating and a lot of the times I don't even get them 100%. Thanks for sharing!

    My TTT:

    1. I know right? I think it's the language, mostly, that makes it difficult to get through. So, I sometimes settle with the movie adaptations of classics, just so at least, I know what they're about. :D

  4. Oh Tin, don't be intimidated by Cloud Atlas! Just give it your best shot and focus. I think you'll love it, and you'll wonder why you ever thought David Mitchell was ever an intimidating author at all. ;)

    Same goes with Silmarillion. I've read that one, and it was alright. Lots of history of Middle Earth though, pre-LOTR setting. :)

    1. Hi Atty. Monique! Yes, you have an excellent point. I have had writers/books that I thought I'd never like but ended up loving in the end. And it's always wonderful to be surprised. So I sure won't be closing my doors on Cloud Atlas.

      Oh, you've read Silmarillion! *tips hat* Haha! From what my cousin tells me, it seems like hard-core LOTR history textbook. And then there is too much foreign names per sentence. Hihi. :D

  5. Les Miserables - I had no intention of reading it, but I got peer pressured. Or, I let myself get peer pressured. It's worth the read, but it's a real investment of time! If I can do it, you can, too! :)

    I have a copy of The Twelfth Night by Shakespeare on my TBR for years, and I am looking for the perfect time to read it. :)

    Cloud Atlas - <3 Oh. Once you get past the first chapter, it gets easier until the middle chapter, but then you'll be too invested to let it go. However, you can try to read Ghostwritten first. It's a bit easier to read. :)

    Gabriel Garcia Marquez - My first GGM is TFG's book this month! I'm sort of excited. :)

    1. After watching the Les Mis movie adaptation, I actually started skimming the book. But all I can think of is: "This book is Huge!" This is sooo long!" Hihi. But yes, someday maybe I can pick it up again. (I'll be The Little Engine That Could: "I think I can", "I think I can" :D)

      Oh, I haven't heard of The Twelfth Night. What is it about? If I would start Shakespeare, I think I'll probably have the most success with A Midsummer Night's Dream and or Much Ado About Nothing. But really, I don't think I can go through with his works unless they have been translated in the simple, common language. :)

      What did you think of the Cloud Atlas movie? I'll take note of Ghostwritten. :)

      Oh, right! Love in the Time of Cholera is GGM! I'll await your thoughts, and that of the rest of the TFG members at the end of the month. Maybe, I'll give GGM a second shot. :D

  6. Hi Tin,

    Haruki Murakami. I'm a big fan of Murakami and have written a few papers on Him for some of college classes. You can say I border on the obsessive when it comes to Murakami. Anyway, I feel bad that your first experience with his book wasn't so good. But Blind Willow is a bad way to begin since even fans of his aren't too happy about that. If I might make a suggestion, I normally tell Murakami beginners to start with Norwegian book as its his most mainstream work. Then you can follow it with South of the Border, West of the Sun or Sputnik Sweetheart. Then Wind Up Bird Chronicles would be a good next book, followed by Kafka on the Shore. Then you can go read Wild Sheep Chase and Dance Dance Dance (my favorite)

    For his short story collection After the Quake is a good way to start, then followed by the Elephant Vanishes.

    Well, that's my suggestion. I do hope you give it a try again. He isn't as intimidating as you think. It's just that you had a bad start. :)

    As for classics, the Russians are one of those novels I'm waiting to get myself ready for.

    Strangely, I fell in love with 100 years, i read it at one sitting (i didn't sleep much that night). I suppose its because it resonated with me when i read it. Though it isn't really an easy book to read, its almost epic in its length and plot.

    Ayn Rand...agree. completely.

    Great post. enjoyed this discussion.


    1. Hi Iphigene! Oh, I am going to jot this all down. Norwegian, South of, West of, Sputnik, Wind Up, Kafka, Wild sheep, and Dance. For shorts: Quake, and Elephant. Got it!

      Right, one really needs to be mentally prepared for Russian Lit. :)

      But now that I think about it, I think I tried 100 years when I was roughly in my teens. Only because my sister had it lying around her room. I think it was the wrong time and not necessarily the wrong book no? Hmmm. Now that I'm ancient, I may feel differently about it. Hee.

      Thank you for the Murakami suggestions Iphigene! I love that you love him so! And as always, I love it when you drop by. :D


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