Authors you can't stand! Rant thread

Discussion in 'Literature' started by NightAngel79, Oct 18, 2010.

  1. NightAngel79

    NightAngel79 Bounty Hunter Administrator
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    In thinking about Roze's 'follow authors or novels' thread it got me thinking. When being introduced to a huge variety of authors in reading the EU of star wars i started branching out and reading some of the authors other works. Enter stage left Terry Brooks; His Shanarra Series is regurgitated #$%^ IMHO. That series was trying SO hard to be LOTR that after 2 books i couldnt stand it any more. I will concede that if i hadn't read LOTR then i might of actually enjoyed Shanarra, but probably not. I could go on about the unimaginative characters and plot line but i'll spare you, my fellow book/literature lovers, my inner termoil.

    Anyone else got an author they just can't stand? Or just wanna disagree about my choice? Happy to hear it/debate it.
     

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  2. SlowRain

    SlowRain Well-Known Member
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    Actually, I don't mind the first two Shannara novels, although I didn't enjoy the other five or so that I read. Elfstones is one of my favorite Fantasy novels. Is Sword a LOTR rip-off? Yes, but only just the beginning. Is Brooks a bad writer? No, definitely not--well, not the first two, anyway. I didn't care for Wishsong very much, but I noticed a change in his writing after the initial three Shannara novels. I think he realized Fantasy was mainly read by adolescents, so he targeted that market. Most noticeably the writing became simpler. He used to have a pretty decent narrative style and use of language, but that was changed to focus more on faster plots and more events. His characters are also pretty standard fare and not particularly deep.

    I actually don't think Tolkien was that brilliant of a writer, either. His language was pretty good, he had some decent ideas about war and mankind's responsibility to society, and he did do a decent job of Frodo and Sam's friendship in ROTK. However, with the sole exception of Frodo and Sam and ROTK, Tolkien's characters were very disappointing, and all anyone really did in that series was walk. He also couldn't write an urban setting to save his neck.

    I figure Brooks and Tolkien are pretty even writers when you add up their strengths and weaknesses. It's just that Tolkien came first.

    As for writers I can't stand: Paulo Coelho, Mitch Albom, and Kevin J. Anderson come to mind. The first two because they are simplistic and overly sentimental, and the third one because he has no clue about language or character.
     
  3. NightAngel79

    NightAngel79 Bounty Hunter Administrator
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    I agree with what your saying, I think i read the first three Shanarra books. The story seemed... tired almost, and so similar to LOTR that it just seemed i had already read the story. Loved Brooks contributions to the Star Wars universe which is what prompted me to see whats up with his other stuff.

    I'm definitely not on tolkien's nuts or anything. ROTK, to be fair, was so drawn out that i couldn't even finish it. He came first, thats it, it was all i could think when i tried to read Shanarra.
     
  4. NYCHitman1

    NYCHitman1 Gun for Hire
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    Stephanie Meyer.. author of the Twilight saga lol
     
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  5. Napalm

    Napalm Well-Known Member
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    LOL, I uhm can't disagree here. However I also haven't read the books either. So I really con't say much.

    I have to say if the whole thing about James Patterson putting his name on books other people write is true, then I have no respect for them either.

    However I have to say there isn't many I CAN"T stand. I just don't bother reading them. Course I am odd, I don't have cable or satelite but LOVE netflix.
     
  6. NYCHitman1

    NYCHitman1 Gun for Hire
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    I haven't read her books either but my fiancee loves them. My hatred is purely based on the fact that I am forced to watch the shitty movies and that vampires aren't supposed to sparkle in sunlight.
     
  7. Bob Maxey

    Bob Maxey Well-Known Member
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    I detest lazy writers. Those that write surface pieces with little or no depth. Writers that misquote, take out of context, lie, and are too far to the left and writers that write about things they no little to nothing about.

    I do not like writers that take well worn ideas and do not bring anything new to the story.

    Bob Maxey
     
  8. Snow_Fox

    Snow_Fox Well-Known Member
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    Well hell... I was hoping to see more... interesting people have shots taken at them.

    no shots at steinbeck? come on... I don't even remember how many chapters were in grapes of wrath but, I do know there was no militant fruit in that book.
     
  9. NYCHitman1

    NYCHitman1 Gun for Hire
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    Reminds me of when James Frey was outed on the Oprah Show b/c of how he lied (extremely exaggerated the truth) in A Million Little Pieces.
     
  10. Hrethgir

    Hrethgir Well-Known Member
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    Gotta disagree about Kevin J. Anderson. I LOVED all the Dune prequels he co-wrote with Brian Herbert, but I've also enjoyed all his solo writings too. He's not the best around, but he keeps me interested and wanting to keep reading, and that's what it's about.

    Can't really think of any authors I don't like off the top of my head. I know there are some, but generally, if I don't like an author, I stop reading his stuff and eventually just forget about him. One guy I can think of is Stephen Baxter, I think, author of Moonseed. I've read a couple of his books, and while they start good, they go all weird and totally off the wall by the end. I know at least 2 of them start with some little problem that eventually leads to humans having to flee the Earth and watch it be destroyed. About halfway thru his books, I stopped liking it and started saying to myself "Seriously? THAT'S what you chose to do? Why did THAT just happen?" Not reading any more of his books.
     
  11. Isthmus

    Isthmus Well-Known Member
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    I'm going to have to go with Stephen King. He's had some great concept ideas over the years, but his execution and his prose is almost amateurish. Great ideas, but bad writer.

    Another one is Clive Cussler. He is the opposite of King. This guy can really spin a yarn, but sadly he seems to have run out of original ideas sometime in the 1980's. All of his books read like an episode of the A-team, and they all follow the exact same formula.
     
  12. Napalm

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    Funny you should mention stienbeck. There are authors/books/stories that if read outside of their time window, are virtually unreadable. or worthless. Take your pick.

    Stienbeck I think might qualify as I have never finished a book by him, and no I don't know how I avoided it in HS.

    Another author I can't stand but again time and translation I think contribute. Leo Tolstoy (SP?). Anna Karenina (Sp?again) worst book I never finished.

    4 pages to describe a coffee table in a room of a house/mansion prision.
     
  13. Napalm

    Napalm Well-Known Member
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    Sadly I love Clive Culssler books but I do have to agree with your statement too. After a point they are the same and I forget which book started that trend. BTW I blame Tom Clancy for this problem too.
     
  14. Bob Maxey

    Bob Maxey Well-Known Member
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    Have you read "On Writing" by the estimable Mr. King? One of the books I often suggest to others.

    I like King. Like McDonalds, he is predictable to some extent. I know what to expect. I think he once considered himself Burger and Fries compared to great dining, or some such.


    I like Clive, but then again, I am required to like him.

    Have you ever seen Cussler's car collection?

    bob Maxey
     
  15. eyebeam

    eyebeam Well-Known Member
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    I too think King is a pretty bad writer. That's not to say I haven't enjoyed some of his books, I have. Good story teller, but lacking in overall skill.
    Nice and funny guest spot on Sons of Anarchy, though! :)
     
  16. Napalm

    Napalm Well-Known Member
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    Yeah, +1 here too. Anyone that can weave a tale about a african dictator that drives an magenta Voisin has my attention. Or a dude with a talbot lago parked next to a Pierce Arrow V12.

    If I ever hit crazy money, building a hangar and starting with an Arrow or a Dusenburg if I can find one.
     
  17. LickTheEnvelope

    LickTheEnvelope Well-Known Member
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    I can't read Michael Crichton to save my life. No idea why...
     
  18. Bob Maxey

    Bob Maxey Well-Known Member
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    The Talbot-Lago. Very cool car.

    I applaud your choice of cars in your hanger and here's hoping you get there.

    As for me, Ill take a hanger full of vintage bikes: HD, Indian, Brough-Superior, Vincent, a few Cushmans, and perhaps a Ford Tri-Motor Airplane.

    Bob Maxey
     
  19. ElasticNinja

    ElasticNinja Well-Known Member
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    THANK YOU :)
    I cant understand how so many of my [girl] friends drool over some techically dead guy WHEN they SHOULD be drooling over me!!!! :(
     
  20. Napalm

    Napalm Well-Known Member
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    Complete and total thread hijack: I saw an exhibit at the Peterson auto museum in LA. It was titled French Curves, cars with French designed bodies from the 20's and 30's. Some choice Bugatti's, Talbot Lago's, a Voisin, I forget what else but I have pictures of them all. Anyway, I live vicariously through Jay Leno.

    Likewise on your motocycle collection, Good luck.

    /thread hijack
     
  21. Btros

    Btros Well-Known Member
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    I definitely think Stephen King is a "love him or hate him" kind of writer. I consider myself a bit of a literature aficionado (degree in English Lit) and my favorite writers as far as "skill" and talent are Steinbeck, Hemingway, and Cormac McCarthy. My all-time favorite writer overall is King. In my opinion he is unmatched when it comes to suspense. He can go overboard in description and some people just don't like his writing style. My ex, who is a published writer, can't get into his writing. I eat it up...last time I counted I had read 38 of his books, most of them two or three times. He's just insane when it comes to suspense and storytelling.

    Least favorite of mine would be Tom Clancy. I tried to read Without Remorse and it was one of the most boring books I've ever read.
     
  22. SlowRain

    SlowRain Well-Known Member
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    That's because it wasn't a great book. Clancy is not literary, but he used to be a fascinating story teller. His first three books were his best: The Hunt for Red October, Patriot Games, and The Cardinal of the Kremlin. You can read his others if you're interested, but those are the only worthwhile ones. Patriot Games is a prequel to The Hunt for Red October, but it doesn't need to be read first.
     
  23. Btros

    Btros Well-Known Member
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    I actually would love to read The Hunt for Red October. Maybe I will give it a try someday.
     
  24. Roze

    Roze Hiding behind a mystery
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    Oh, seems that our reading taste differs here. I actually LOVE Brooks, I have read all of his books and have collected 80% of his work. You can tell that he idolized Tolkein and I can defnitely see how if you read the first series, you would automatically compare it to LOTR. I was not put off with the writing style and I enjoyed the plot and character development. If you read the other Shanara series, then the feeling of LOTR fades. Though as SlowRain mentioned, the writing style does get 'simpler' lol.

    Author I HATE HATE HAT is Margrete Atwood. That woman doth writes too much for so little. I'm not the type that enjoys reading the mudane details in a book, so I was bored to death reading Alias Grace. The book was 700 pages but she could have written it in less than 200.
     
  25. SlowRain

    SlowRain Well-Known Member
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    I've only read two of her books, but I think she's pretty good. She has a beautiful use of language that I enjoy, making her one of the best prose stylists I've read. I thought Alias Grace was good. It wasn't stellar or anything, but I couldn't find any major faults. I wouldn't say I was sympathetic to Grace, but I think the ambiguity does force the reader to look at both sides of the story. It's also a good look at the system of incarceration that we (used to) have.

    The other one I read was The Blind Assassin, which is very good. It's a story-within-a-story, a-story-within-a-story-within-a-story, a love story, a mystery--and all very compassionate. Where Alias Grace is more likely to appeal to literary readers and women, The Blind Assassin has more crossover appeal.
     

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