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What are the bleakest books you've read?

 
 
Fil Albuquerque
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2019 08:56 am
Book of Disquiet "Bernardo Soares" Fernando Pessoa!

...for the purest pursuer, there is an infinite search for the bleakest of the bleak waiting for you in:
0 Replies
 
Ragman
 
  1  
Reply Tue 9 Jul, 2019 07:24 am
I don’t know if it’s been mentioned before but “Executioners Song” is high on my list.
Sturgis
 
  1  
Reply Tue 9 Jul, 2019 03:42 pm
@Ragman,
Why yes. Yes it was mentioned back on page one...


...by you or maybe someone else who had access to your info.


Regarding Notes From Underground, I myself didn't think it was bleak.
Ragman
 
  1  
Reply Tue 9 Jul, 2019 04:09 pm
@Sturgis,
So I did. Sounded familiar.
oralloy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 22 Jan, 2020 09:27 pm
@hingehead,
hingehead wrote:
I found the second trilogy of the Thomas Covenant Chronicles (Stephen M. Donaldson) relentlessly bleak.

I second that assessment.

The His Dark Materials/Golden Compass books were pretty grim. But I'd say the second Thomas Covenant trilogy has to be the bleakest of the bleak.
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Wed 22 Jan, 2020 09:43 pm
Other books to consider:

The Cloister and the Hearth
Grapes of Wrath
On the Beach
I Am Legend
0 Replies
 
glitterbag
 
  1  
Reply Wed 22 Jan, 2020 09:47 pm
@Ragman,
Love in the time of Cholera....the book club picked that to read for our first meeting......It made me miserable, it had to been the most depressing thing I've ever read...I hated all of the characters......................I seldom read fiction, personally prefer non-fiction....and I didn't finish the book.....I had to drag myself to book club because I was embarrassed I didn't finish it. Turns out none of the women managed to finish it. I did finish it later, but it was a dreadful read. I know many people liked it...I didn't....I'll stick to non-fiction.
0 Replies
 
roger
 
  1  
Reply Wed 22 Jan, 2020 10:35 pm
Almost anything from Scott Turow. Not to say he isn't a good writer.
glitterbag
 
  2  
Reply Wed 22 Jan, 2020 10:42 pm
@roger,
Well, just because some one is incredibly articulate or a gifted writer doesn't mean they can't be a massive buzz kill.
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edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Wed 22 Jan, 2020 11:15 pm
I think of Seize the Day by Saul Bellow, automatically, when I think of bleak stories.
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BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Thu 23 Jan, 2020 04:01 am
A book dealing with the slow deaths of the whole human race due to nuclear warfare by the name of Level Seven .
izzythepush
 
  1  
Reply Thu 23 Jan, 2020 04:06 am
@BillRM,
It's Russian and fairly predictable if I remember right.
0 Replies
 
hightor
 
  2  
Reply Thu 23 Jan, 2020 05:46 am
Perdido Street Station by China Miéville
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izzythepush
 
  2  
Reply Thu 23 Jan, 2020 06:15 am
@BillRM,
In many respects I think those books did more harm than good, people became so caught up in the inevitability of nuclear war that they allowed the environment to turn to ****.

It's the same reason nobody tries giving up smoking in a war zone.
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Thu 23 Jan, 2020 09:29 am
@izzythepush,
izzythepush wrote:

In many respects I think those books did more harm than good, people became so caught up in the inevitability of nuclear war that they allowed the environment to turn to ****.

It's the same reason nobody tries giving up smoking in a war zone.


When I was growing up we would have nuclear war drills at school with either drills of ducking under our desks and or going to the school fall out shelters.

Now thanks to gun nuts,at least in the US, we are bringing back similar drills, to our schools and into our children lives for the active shooters threat.

Of course unlike the nuclear war threat my generation of children faced the current active shooter threats are resulting in far more harm then just bad childhood dreams.
izzythepush
 
  1  
Reply Thu 23 Jan, 2020 09:48 am
@BillRM,
We never had that, I'm a bit younger than you though. I was a baby during the Cuban Missile Crisis.

I was very aware of the threat of nuclear devastation though.

https://assets.catawiki.nl/assets/2019/9/10/5/9/3/593c73af-f31e-4f84-b760-e56edc252d90.jpg

A friend recommended it but I was quite disappointed, it was like On The Beach, the end was coming, we just had to wait it out.

The only bit I liked was when the writer describes people using oratory and a move back to such skills, that was interesting. It did look like it may have gone in a different direction, but no, it followed the same worn out route of so many others.
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Thu 23 Jan, 2020 10:37 am
@izzythepush,
izzythepush wrote:

We never had that, I'm a bit younger than you though. I was a baby during the Cuban Missile Crisis.

I was very aware of the threat of nuclear devastation though.

https://assets.catawiki.nl/assets/2019/9/10/5/9/3/593c73af-f31e-4f84-b760-e56edc252d90.jpg

A friend recommended it but I was quite disappointed, it was like On The Beach, the end was coming, we just had to wait it out.

The only bit I liked was when the writer describes people using oratory and a move back to such skills, that was interesting. It did look like it may have gone in a different direction, but no, it followed the same worn out route of so many others.


I was a mid teenager during the Cuban Missile Crisis an can remember listening to short wave radio stations including radio Moscow while using a drawing compass on a world map with a list of the range of those missiles in Cuban.

If I remember correctly my then location in upper New Jersey was placing me outside of the known and or assume range of most of those missiles in Cuba.

If was a very uptight and nerves time to say the least.

On the Beach Movie had me grinding my teeth as I could not understand why they would not be bending all their efforts in trying to get a small human breeding population pass the contamination period not just accept their deaths.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Thu 23 Jan, 2020 11:20 am
The Quincunx, the first novel of Charles Palliser.

By the way, Thomas Hardy wrote far more Gothic romances than any other type of novel. Perhaps modern teachers of English lit are embarrassed and don't want to bring that up. Hardy made a good living writing cheap, trashy novels--I'm sure it paid him better than his lackluster career as an architect.
0 Replies
 
roger
 
  1  
Reply Thu 23 Jan, 2020 12:21 pm
@izzythepush,
izzythepush wrote:

In many respects I think those books did more harm than good, people became so caught up in the inevitability of nuclear war that they allowed the environment to turn to ****.

It's the same reason nobody tries giving up smoking in a war zone.

I'll think about that.
0 Replies
 
 

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