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Complex, Difficult Books That Are Worth the Effort It Takes to Read Them

Our maverick English Teacher and contrarian comes up with 60 works of fiction whose range of ideas, complexity of structure, and use of language all contribute to their reputations of being difficult. All of them, however, are , in the compiler's opinion, well worth the effort it takes to read them. To those wondering why "Finnegan's Wake" and "In Search of Lost Time" are absent, our compiler can only say that, in his humble opinion, they weren't worth it. Mea culpa.
2,271 users · 3,810 views
 
made by James Nelson
avg. score: 6 of 60 (10%)
required scores: 1, 2, 3, 5, 10 

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1
1Q84
1Q84
2
2666
2666
3
And Quiet Flows the Don (Mikhail Sholokhov)
And Quiet Flows the Don (Mikhail Sholokhov)
4
August 1914 (Solzhenitsyn)
August 1914 (Solzhenitsyn)
5
Bleak House (Charles Dickens)
Bleak House (Charles Dickens)
6
The Brothers Karamazov
The Brothers Karamazov
7
The Castle (Franz Kafka)
The Castle (Franz Kafka)
8
Cloud Atlas (David Mitchell)
Cloud Atlas (David Mitchell)
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9
Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
10
The Crying of Lot 49
The Crying of Lot 49
11
Cryptonomicon
Cryptonomicon
12
Demons (Fyodor Dostoyevsky)
Demons (Fyodor Dostoyevsky)
13
Don Quixote
Don Quixote
14
Dune (Frank Herbert)
Dune (Frank Herbert)
15
The Erasers
The Erasers
16
The Fermata (Nicholson Baker)
The Fermata (Nicholson Baker)
17
The First Circle
The First Circle
18
Foucault's Pendulum (Umberto Eco)
Foucault's Pendulum (Umberto Eco)
19
Gravity's Rainbow (Thomas Pynchon)
Gravity's Rainbow (Thomas Pynchon)
20
The Greek Passion (Kazantzakis)
The Greek Passion (Kazantzakis)
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21
Group Portrait With Lady (Bõll)
Group Portrait With Lady (Bõll)
22
Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World
Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World
23
Heart of Darkness
Heart of Darkness
24
House of Leaves (Mark Z. Danielewski)
House of Leaves (Mark Z. Danielewski)
25
How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe (Charles Yu)
How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe (Charles Yu)
26
If on a Winter's Night a Traveler
If on a Winter's Night a Traveler
27
In Sunlight and in Shadow (Mark Helprin)
In Sunlight and in Shadow (Mark Helprin)
28
Infinite Jest (David Foster Wallace)
Infinite Jest (David Foster Wallace)
29
Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell
Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell
30
The Last Temptation of Christ
The Last Temptation of Christ
31
Last Year at Marienbad (Alain Robbe-Grillet)
Last Year at Marienbad (Alain Robbe-Grillet)
32
Les Miserables (Victor Hugo)
Les Miserables (Victor Hugo)
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33
Libra (Don Delillo)
Libra (Don Delillo)
34
Man's Fate (André Malraux)
Man's Fate (André Malraux)
35
March 1917 (Solzenhitsyn)
March 1917 (Solzenhitsyn)
36
The Mezzanine
The Mezzanine
37
Moby-Dick
Moby-Dick
38
The Name of the Rose (Umberto Eco)
The Name of the Rose (Umberto Eco)
39
Nostromo (Conrad - Penguin Classics))
Nostromo (Conrad - Penguin Classics))
40
November 1916 (Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn)
November 1916 (Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn)
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