Tuesday, October 29, 2013

15 Days Book Blogging Challenge: Books You've Thrown Across The Room

The 15 Days Book Blogging Challenge is a challenge to write for fifteen days on a set of book and book blog related topics hosted at Good Books and Good Wine. One neat thing with this challenge is that there's no time limits to participate. My originating post is here.

Today's topic, Books You've Thrown Across The Room is one that's an interesting one. As far as I can remember, I don't think I've ever physically thrown a book across the room. I just can't bring myself to risk causing any damage to a book, regardless of how much I dislike it.

There are though, a number of books I've given up on in disgust or ranted about after finishing them. Two that came to mind immediately are:

Darkover Landfall by Marion Zimmer Braldley, set me off years ago and I ended up ranting about it here back then. I won't duplicate the rant, just say that my opinions haven't changed since. There's also too many unanswered questions left by the book, but my biggest issues with Darkover Landfall come down to the characters' attitudes.

If you like the Darkover world, I think this is a book you're going to end up reading, but by far my preferences run to some of the later books such as Exile's Song, or even The Bloody Sun, which was also one of the earlier books in the series.

The other book is one I tried reading last year, Norman F. Cantor's biography of Alexander the Great. Honestly, I don't think I got even twenty pages into the book before I put it down permanently. I found the author's point of view to be judgmental, biased and irritating on several aspects of ancient Greek culture.  I don't read a book like this for the author's biases, I read to learn about the subject in question. Give me the information and let me make up my own mind on how I feel about how they lived.

Not only that, but if my memory's not playing tricks on me, the map in the front has some errors in it too, namely the location of Alexandria. That's just sloppiness, though that might be more the fault of the publisher, and didn't give me the best feeling either. Based on this book, I don't even want to try any of his other works, and Norman Cantor is supposed to be quite a well respected writer on history.

There are definitely some better books on Alexander out there.
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