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Books you wish hadn't been published...


Cathy
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...not in a mean way, but what are the books you wish the publishers had had the nerve to turn down? I'm reading the 'Little House' books (e.g. Little House on the Prairie) (PS I'm 23, not 9) and love them all, until I got 'The First Four Years' in a second-hand bookshop yesterday. It seems this(unfinished?) book was kept by Laura Ingalls Wilder's daughter in a notebook , until after her daughter died when the family's lawyer got the thing published - and what a shame! Its like the skeleton of a whole book, and though its very sad she died before finishing it, I get the feeling it should have been left unpublished... I'm sure there are lots of other cases where things have been published because the person is too famous to turn down or it seems lucrative but I can't think of them right now...

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I've just read Rebecca's Tale by Sally Beaumont...it's a follow on from Daphne Du Maurier's Rebecca and I'm not sure if I think it hadn't been published!

 

I loved Rebecca and Rebecca's Tale was quite good, but I didn't really like the fact that a different author was coming along and filling in some of the gaps that Du Maurier left....there's a chapter which consists of a diary written by Rebecca and I didn't much like the fact that I was reading Beaumont's idea of Rebecca and not du Maurier's. Saying that it was interesting reading another person's idea of what Rebecca might have been like, I suppose if you just keep in mind that this is just one author's interpretation of Du Maurier's character and is not necessarily correct or exhaustive then it might be ok...in short, it was an ok read, but I felt a little disloyal to Du Maurier for reading it!

 

I kind of wish it hadn't been published as I liked my own ideas from the original Rebecca and now they're coloured by the ideas from Rebecca's Tale.

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I feel the same way about 'Wide Sargasso Sea', the book that fills in Rochester's past from Jane Eyre... Sequels/fanlit can be really good at trampling all over your own precious ideas of the story behind the story... thinking also of 'The Lost Sex Scenes of Jane Austen' here! ;-)

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I feel the same way about 'Wide Sargasso Sea', the book that fills in Rochester's past from Jane Eyre... Sequels/fanlit can be really good at trampling all over your own precious ideas of the story behind the story... thinking also of 'The Lost Sex Scenes of Jane Austen' here! ;-)

 

 

Oh, I really liked Wide Sargasso Sea, I felt that Jean Rhys had something important to say about poor Bertha which really added to the reading of Jane Eyre. Plus, it is such a different novel to Jane Eyre, very exotic and heady, that Rhys didn't trample too much over Charlotte Bronte.

 

Isn't there a 'Heathcliffe' novel out explaining his life? That is awful, that man should remain a mystery!

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I have Rebecca's Tale and Wide Sargasso Sea on my TBR, but I'm not especially attached to either Rebecca or Jane Eyre so I won't mind reading the follow ups. I also read quite a lot of Jane Austen fan-fiction (for want of a better word) and have enjoyed some (Joan Aiken) and hated others (Emma Tenant). I'm don't think I would ever be persuaded to read a follow-up to Persuasion though as I am too fond of Anne and Captain Wentworth to have them spoiled :D

 

The book I want to nominate as never should have been published is Lenten Lands by Douglas H Gresham. Gresham is one of the son's of Joy Davidson who married C S Lewis and it tells the story of Gresham's childhood with C S Lewis and his brother Warnie. It was dreadful, pompous and over-sentimental, it would never have been published had it not been for the personal connection with C S Lewis.

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Oh, I really liked Wide Sargasso Sea, I felt that Jean Rhys had something important to say about poor Bertha which really added to the reading of Jane Eyre. Plus, it is such a different novel to Jane Eyre, very exotic and heady, that Rhys didn't trample too much over Charlotte Bronte.

 

Isn't there a 'Heathcliffe' novel out explaining his life? That is awful, that man should remain a mystery!

 

Hmm, I'm still not so sure about Wide Sargasso Sea... there's a bit of a discussion about it in the unfortunately quiet Pre-1900 fiction forum!

 

But I totally agree that Heathcliffe should be left alone - how else will he keep winning 'most troubled romantic lead' award for the178th year in a row?!

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But I totally agree that Heathcliffe should be left alone - how else will he keep winning 'most troubled romantic lead' award for the178th year in a row?!

 

Exactly! Nobody wants him explained, or to know what happened to him during intervening years! What makes contemporary authors think it is ok to explain everything? Surely suspense is the foundation of fictional narrative?

 

And defending WSS again - Charlotte Bronte did omit to tell us enough about Bertha leaving a gap to be filled, and Rhys didn't try to emulate Bronte's style but created a whole stand alone novel. I just love it because it is so exotic and so far removed from plain Jane!

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Think just about the worst thing I have read was the sequel to 'Gone with the wind'. It included a stay in Ireland and the IRA plus a mother in law in Charleston and a child that no-one knew about.

 

If it hadn't come from the library it would have been ceremoniously disembowelled.

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Think just about the worst thing I have read was the sequel to 'Gone with the wind'. It included a stay in Ireland and the IRA plus a mother in law in Charleston and a child that no-one knew about.

 

If it hadn't come from the library it would have been ceremoniously disembowelled.

 

Sounds horrible! Was it called Scarlett or something? The IRA indeed? Well, that certainly sounds liek a contender for the book that should never have been published.

 

Away from fiction, I wish Scar Tissue by Anthony Kiedis (lead singer of Red Hot Chili Peppers' biography) had never been published. I used to be such a huge fan, have all the CDs, and then I read this I discovered what a self-indulgent, egocentric, pathetic little child he actually was. I stopped reading the book about 100 pages in and haven't been able to summon the courage to put RHCP back on since.

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It was and by someone called Stephens Mitchell. Also provided advice on removing corsets to do Irish jig

 

Any relation to Margaret? That sounds hysterical -are you sure it wasn't a comic novel? (!) How do you remove corsets whilst jigging?! :)

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