Tuesday, April 6, 2021

Books I’d Gladly Throw Into the Ocean Toss into the Recycling Bin


I really don't like to talk ugly about books. But you must be warned.

French Fairy Tales by Marie-Catherine d'Aulnoy is an ebook version of a classic collection of French stories, and it's on the 1001 Children's Books You Must Read list. This version is poorly translated into English from the French, with many errors in verb tenses, the use of pronouns, and incorrect vocabulary. In addition, many pages are poorly scanned, and the resulting pages are unreadable. I requested my money back from Amazon.

The Story of Mankind by Hendrik Willem van Loon. This book, sadly, was an early Newbery winner. What a struggle it was to get through it! This is the story of the history of the world through the ages, written for a young audience. It is said to have been amended and updated and added to, but, if that is so, I can only shudder to think of the awful book that this book was originally. It is, in its present form, chock full of cruel opinions and mean asides about various peoples and their actions through the ages.

Hitty: Her First Hundred Years by Rachel Field. Another early Newbery winner. This one is the life of a wooden doll. Please tell me I never have to read this again. 

Nerd Gone Wild by Vicki Lewis Thompson. This was one of my few attempts to read a true romance book. I haven't tried again.

American Utopia written by David Byrne and illustrated by Maira Kalman was hugely disappointing. I love quirky, and I love Maira Kalman, but felt to me like it was pointless. 

Angry Conversations with God by Susan E. Isaacs is a book written by a celebrity and I really don't like reading books by celebrities. Maybe instead of talking to God (ranting, really) Isaacs might do a little listening?

I May Be Wrong But I Doubt It by Charles Barkley. I really don't like reading books by celebrities. Just because you can play basketball doesn't mean you can write...

It's Not About the Bike by Lance Armstrong. Again, I really don't like books by celebrities. And Lance later turned out to be a not-very-nice fellow, didn't he?

Name and Address Withheld by Jane Sigaloff. Too bad the author didn't withhold her name from this awful book.

The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands by Laura Schlessinger. Need I say more?


It hasn't happened very often. But there are a few books I'd gladly throw into the ocean or toss into the recycling bin. I've written about a couple before here: Top Ten Books I Hated, Loathed, and Otherwise Abhorred. I won't bring those up again. But just know that this list includes the wildly popular The Sparrow and A Prayer for Owen Meany.


Thank you to Beauty & Her Books for suggesting this prompt.

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. Each Tuesday That Artsy Reader Girl assigns a topic and then post her top ten list that fits that topic. You’re more than welcome to join her and create your own top ten (or 2, 5, 20, etc.) list as well. Feel free to put a unique spin on the topic to make it work for you! Please link back to That Artsy Reader Girl in your own post so that others know where to find more information.

36 comments:

  1. I’d throw Laura Schlessinger in after her book too!

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    1. I literally laughed out loud. I agree.

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  2. Those are all new to me ones. I like that you prefer to recycle them then toss into the ocean too! ;)


    Here's my Tuesday Post

    Have a GREAT day!

    Old Follower :)

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  3. Hi Debbie! Don't know any of these and don't wish to get acquainted with any of them. So they can stay right there in the trash bin. Think you are absolutely right about all of them!

    Ten Books I'd gladly throw into the ocean (for the mermaids to read)

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  4. Good for you for knowing your limits! And, yeah, recycling them would be a better option than throwing them into the ocean. :)

    My post: https://lydiaschoch.com/top-ten-tuesday-books-id-gladly-throw-into-the-ocean/

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  5. I have a lot of homeschooling friends who adore Story of Mankind and other books by him. No surprise that all are way to the right of me politically! Good list--especially the celebrity memoirs.

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  6. I haven't read any of your current list, thank goodness. Even the title of Barkley's book turns me off. I guess it's supposed to come across as arrogant?

    The Story of Mankind sounds terrible, especially for impressionable children.

    It's so funny that you've listed the Lance Armstrong book. People used to tell my husband all the time that he looks like Lance! I see it a little bit but it's not that strong a resemblance. Those comments dried up at about the time the doping scandal hit the headlines, thank goodness.

    You mentioned on my blog that you don't care for Nicholas Sparks either. Funnily enough, my husband has also been told a few times that he looks like Sparks! That probably hasn't happened in 15 years but I never saw that resemblance.

    I have read The Sparrow and liked it but I see how it isn't for everyone. The sequel wasn't as good but did fill in a lot of gaps from the first book.

    I didn't care for A Prayer for Owen Meany either. It wouldn't go on a list of books I loathe but I wouldn't recommend it to anyone either.

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  7. The recycling bin made me laugh - but it is a more environmentally friendly way! I definitely agree with books written by celebrities, they're pretty much automatically a no from me, unless I love that celebrity (that's usually a mistake though as it's either awful or ghost written - so I need to learn my lesson really)

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  8. i am curious about charles barley's book. was it, at least, funny. i think he has a great sense of humor
    sherry @ fundinmental

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    1. Sadly (and I use this word both metaphorically and literally), no.

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  9. Your comments are the best! I especially agree with you about celebrity books. Some are good, but I tend to avoid them

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  10. Thanks for steering me away from these, although frankly, it's not likely I would ever have picked them up. I did once waste a few hours of my life reading The Celestine Prophecy, hours that I'll never get back. And I would add to your list The Alchemist, another waste of good trees in my opinion. I will never understand that book's popularity.

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  11. I'll be staying away from these books! ;D

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  12. You could put them in the Recycle bin

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  13. Great list and spirit behind it! Hitty is the only one I've read, as a kid, when I found it profoundly okay. I did go look at your other post, and I'm one of those who really liked both Owen Meany and The Sparrow, so we'll have to agree to disagree on those! But I will certainly not be reading any of the others you've mentioned on either list!

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  14. I haven't heard of most of these, but from your explanations, I can see why they annoyed you. Definitely recycle bin material (although I usually just donate them to the library).

    Happy TTT!

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  15. I haven't read any of these but they do sound like they belong in the recycling bin! :)
    And, I had to check out your books you hated list because I did love A Prayer for Owen Meany. I think you are right, there's no middle ground on that one. haha..

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  16. When I read "It's Not About the Bike" it was before we knew how dirty Lance was. Being as Rick's a cyclist (and we used to think Lance wasn't so bad) I thought I should read it and it was OK in that it does present quite a picture of the damaged life of many professional cyclists (according to Rick you have to be a little damaged to be in that line of work). But in retrospect, so much of it was a lie. I agree - I'd toss it, too.

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  17. Great list! I love honest hating of things that don't suit or that don't live up to an inflated reputation. There must be many books that are now obsolete because of chauvanism of one kind or another.

    be safe... mae at maefood.blogspot.com

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  18. These books have never crossed my path nor will they ever after this post. I laughed so hard at the title of this post too.

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  19. Blech. Thanks for the laughs, Deb. :)

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  20. I really don't like celebrity books either generally.

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  21. I had seen that Charles Barclay book and just the title said, No way to me. I have not read any of these, thank goodness.

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  22. Fun list of duds. I will be sure to avoid them all! :)

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  23. I've not read any of these, but I'm all for trashing the ones by Laura Schlessinger and Lance Armstrong.

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  24. "Please tell me I never have to read this again." So funny! But, I know what you mean, I've read a few books like that.

    I rarely read a romance book but I put a few on my tbr list recently. Don't know what I was thinking.

    I wouldn't read Angry Conversations with God because I don't like the title.

    I'll have to check out your Top Ten Books I Hated, Loathed, and Otherwise Abhorred. I liked the Sparrow but didn't like A Prayer for Owen Meany.

    I usually like books by celebrities but DID NOT like In Pieces by Sally Field, it was a pity party. I was so excited to listen to Greenlights by Matthew McConaughey but he talked about private things (that he did in private) and that was something I did not need or want to know.

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    1. Just so you know, I finished In Pieces, did not finish Greenlights.

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  25. They sound like trash. That's the right place for them.

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  26. I've enjoyed books by Tina Fey, Mindy Kaling, and Amy Poehler but they all writers as well as actors so maybe that is why they were so much better? Charles Barkley is an outspoken Auburn fan which I love and in small doses he's very funny but I think the key phrase is small doses. I have learned the hard way that a Newbery winner does not always guarantee a good read.

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  27. I've had fun with Tina Fey's Bossypants and Amy Poehler's Yes Please. And I've heard from others that Rob Lowe's memoirs are particularly insightful and entertaining, though I've not read any yet.

    And boo to Charles Barkley in any format! lol.

    I remember reading Jacob Have I loved when I was a kid and rereading it as an adult and I still didn't get it or like it at all. So classics/newberrys don't always guarantee good reads.

    I have not read the Sparrow or A Prayer for Owen Meaney but I've heard great things and they have been on my list forever. Now I'm hesitant... Love your pic for trashing the books!

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  28. Fun post! I haven't read any of those you pictured and also hated Owen Meany. But I love The Sparrow :)

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  29. Also, I did enjoy Rob Lowe's book. His is the only celebrity book that I can think of that I really liked.

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  30. I'd have to agree with you just based on the titles in many of these cases. Celeb books have zero interest for me, especially the ones written by people who became "famous" as influencers, reality programme participants and are barely in their 30s.

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  31. It's always such a bummer when books don't work for us.

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