Day 09 – Book that makes you sick

Three books came to mind here.

At first I thought of Nabokov’s Lolita. The main character Humbert with his antisocial tendencies is quite deplorable. His intellectual, quiet and genteel demeanor makes his actions all the more sickening.
Ironically, I actually enjoyed Nabokov’s writing style. Lolita is written in the first person, a style I prefer when reading and writing. I found the book very easy to read and it was probably because of this that I managed it to finish it.
I realized that Lolita, as controversial as its contents are, could not be that bad when compared to the following books:

At least I finished Lolita. I couldn’t get even half way through either of the above books. I have no idea how they end and frankly I don’t care.
If you have seen the movie American Psycho with Christian Bale in the lead then you’ll have an idea what the book is about. Call it the original Dexter if you like.

As for Rhinehart (I think this is a pseudonym), The Dice Man didn’t exactly have a bad plot. In fact the theme was quite genius. It’s about a psychiatrist who decides one day that he will make all his decisions based on the roll of the dice. Sounds very exciting but unfortunately I did not get as far as the eventual dice-throwing.
In the beginning of the book you get to meet some of the psychiatrist’s patients. We get to hear some pretty revealing information about their lives, which is fine. But when one patient happens to be a narcissistic, sociopathic serial rapist, its where I drew the line. And because of the doctor-patient confidentiality clause, the shrink cannot report this man to the police and has to contend with fresh details every session about the women he has raped for the week. As you can guess, reading this made me feel quite ill.

The Dice man is apparently a very famous book, having inspired many films and other novels, and even a few musicians.
It’s definitely not my cup of herbal tea however, and neither is American Psycho.

4 thoughts on “Day 09 – Book that makes you sick

  1. Adam says:

    I haven’t read any of the books that you mentioned, although The Dice Man sounds really interesting. I’d say that the book that was most unsettling for me to read was Requiem for a Dream by Hubert Selby Jr. It’s hard to not be at least a little disturbed when you’re reading a book about heroine addicts.

    • Nisha says:

      I remember watching the movie Requeim for a Dream, and that I found quite disturbing so I can imagine that the book is probably worse. I must admit that Dice Man is quite a popular book and many people actually like it. Give it a go and tell me what you think… 🙂

  2. I agree with you about Lolita – there is definitely an irony in hating the main character so much, and yet adoring the prose, that gorgeous prose! I think that is what sneaky Nabokov had in mind – see he could fool his audience into liking (or at least feeling sorry for) Humbert through the beauty of his words.

    • Nisha says:

      The prose was beautiful, no doubt about that, but to really win over an audience you must make your main character relatable in some way. I could not relate to Humbert Humbert (you think as talented as Nabokov is he could thought of a different surname or first name!) at all, in fact I hated him.
      There are many books I have read and seem to have forgotten, but this wasn’t one of them so I guess the author achieved what he wanted. You rather have a controversial book everybody hates but gives you the recognition of your writing talents than have a book nobody remembers!
      Thanks for stopping by Louise!

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