Top 10 Worst Books You Had to Read in High School English Class

Here are the pieces of "classic" literature that your sadistic high school English teacher forced you to read and write reports about, take tests on, and discuss in circles. I actually don't hate a majority of these books (I even love a few of them), but I just added a bunch I knew people read and didn't like.
The Top Ten
1 To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee

Never said how to kill a mockingbird.

2 The Great Gatsby - F. Scott Fitzgerald

Most boring piece of trash ever written. A story about people who have no life and no one cares about them. Should have just written a sentence like this: Some people in life are shallow and useless. The End.

3 Lord of the Flies - William Golding

Barely any plot, not great writing (how many times can you use the word "pink" in one chapter?). I get it's supposed to be a metaphor, but it was annoyingly repetitive.

The characters didn't really have any personality other than "evil," "good leader," or "sad." The allegory was interesting, though, so that was the book's only redeeming quality.

Honestly, I love the idea, plot, characters, and the symbolism/allegory. But the writing and ending were horrible.

The author took too much time to explain details, and at the end, I still couldn't picture it. The one time I wanted details was the ending, and it didn't have any.

4 Better Off - Eric Brende

Worst book I've ever read. Period. See my entry in "Worst Books of All Time" about it for my full review.

5 Romeo and Juliet - William Shakespeare

Never before has such a great story had two such bland main characters. This should have been about Mercutio.

No Grade 9 can survive without reading Romeo and Juliet in English class.

And the amount of work the teachers give for it is insane too.

6 The Scarlet Letter - Nathaniel Hawthorne
7 Great Expectations - Charles Dickens

Interesting story and characters. Most boring execution I've ever had to drag myself through.

8 The Catcher in the Rye - J. D. Salinger

A travesty of literature that has no place in courses at the middle- or high-school level. It championed libertinism and the rejection of the beliefs and mores of the established order, as proximately represented by parents. Think of it as Anarchy 101.

Why would high school teachers try to make their students even more uncaring, useless people by making them read this book about a useless, uncaring person? I thought teachers were supposed to inspire you to greatness, not teach you to be an ass.

9 Fahrenheit 451 - Ray Bradbury

Most boring book and stupid premise I've ever read. The writing style of Bradbury is awful too.

It could've been a good book, but it was too anti-technology in my opinion.

Good, but there's something that I can't quite put my finger on about this book that makes it kind of unlikeable.

10 Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck
The Contenders
11 Frankenstein - Mary Shelley

A bit tedious and thin. Dracula is better.

12 Macbeth - William Shakespeare

People in my school's drama club claim it's so bad that saying it on production night will curse the play and kill the cast members.

13 1984 - George Orwell
14 Into the Wild - Jon Krakauer

Great, tragic story about a misunderstood young man who just wanted acceptance in nature. Jon Krakauer telling pointless personal tales of trekking into the wilderness and endless paragraphs repeating the same info over and over? Not so great.

15 The Importance of Being Earnest - Oscar Wilde
16 Beowulf - Anonymous
17 One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest - Ken Kesey

Thanks to books like this, crazy people now live under freeway bridges instead of in hospitals. Thanks, "progressive" writer!

18 Death of a Salesman - Arthur Miller

My life sucks, so I will do nothing about it. The end.

19 Jane Eyre - Charlotte Brontë
20 How to Read Literature Like a Professor - Thomas C. Foster
21 Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad

This is my #1 most hated book. Mainly because Conrad's style is so hard to read, and the premise also sounds boring, which makes it harder to read.

22 The Metamorphosis - Franz Kafka

The phrase What? was invented after the first person read this book. If you feel alienated, then do something about it. Kafka says, No, just lay in bed and endlessly whine about it. What?

This book is the reason my grade is tanking in English. This book can burn in Hell.

23 East of Eden - John Steinbeck

I hate other people's relationships. Why do people care enough to write 8,000-page books about them?

24 The Boy in the Striped Pajamas
25 The Odyssey - Homer
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