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Books and Recommendations ...

49 replies

NotQuiteCockney · 31/01/2007 17:24

Some years ago, I read The Corrections, when everyone else read it. I told DH it was great. He put it in his pile of "to read" books, where it was promptly forgotten, along with every other not-totally-fluffy book I ever recommended.

Last Friday, DH went out, very late, for the first time in ages. Stayed up drinking and chatting with random folk, and they started talking about literature.

Turned out all of them had read and loved The Corrections, and berated DH for not having read it.

So DH has finally started reading it. He keeps laughing out loud and telling me how good it is. Why didn't he believe me when I said it the first time?

And I keep saying I didn't expect him to read it anyway, as he mostly reads non-fiction, SF, and gun/bomb/airport crap. Which he sees as a judgemental statement (it is, but only the last bit really).

Is it really unreasonable of me to maybe think DH might sometime read some book I recommended to him? Or that he might take my recommendations slightly more seriously than groups of random blokes at a night out?

(It probably doesn't help that he's said things like "it's not literature, it's good", since starting it.)

I know, this is really trivial stuff, but if you had to listen to him laughing at the funny bits all the damn time, you'd want to throttle him, too.

OP posts:
Pruni · 01/02/2007 09:08

Message withdrawn

purplemonkeydishwasher · 01/02/2007 09:19

the only things my DH reads or has read are IT books for courses. and he read a michael moore book once. and possible a couple of essays about celtic.

otherwise nowt.

our conversations go something like this:

DH: watcha reeeeeadin'?
me: a book
DH: what;s it about
me: a detective who id trying to solve the murder of a clairvoyant...
DH: (reading over my shoulder in an annoying voice)
me: FINE! (i put the book down to pay attention to HIM)

repeat for mumsnet.

BottomlyPotts · 01/02/2007 09:25

MyDH does this on a lsightly different level. I'll make a recommendation about something based on research and he'll humour me and scoff and not really take it onboard.

A few months on, he'll come home from work and make the suggestion to ME, because so and so at work said it was very good.

It drives me mad.

oliveoil · 01/02/2007 09:28

You all have time to read books?

NotQuiteCockney · 01/02/2007 12:21

purplemonkeydishwasher, I would kill my DH if he did that. Every so often, I'll be reading a magazine or something, and put it down, while wrangling a child. He will then pick up my magazine and start reading it! I swear one of these times I will just turn into the Incredible Hulk when he does this, and start breaking things.

And yeah, BottomlyPotts, that's reasonably similar, and also annoying. DH does generally remember what I've recommended. He'd do what yours does, but as a joke, on purpose. Which is maybe better?

OP posts:
Marina · 01/02/2007 12:28

Sigh, this all sounds familiar NQC. We have nearly ripped each others' throats out over copies of Word or Private Eye.
Books and reading are an area of our relationship that has been essential in keeping us together and talking through some difficult times.
But I do find dh's keenness to keep quoting chunks of the wildly overrated Tim Moore at me, while sniggering, very wearing
He on the other hand thinks the mighty Helen Simpson is a castrating vengeful witch and refuses to love Jonathan Coe as much as I do.
And I also hate it when, having introduced him to some of my favourite writers, eg Julian Barnes and William Boyd, he starts off on one of his "let me deconstruct this for you Cambridge stylee you redbrick gonk" riffs...

Clarinet60 · 01/02/2007 12:33


foxinsocks · 01/02/2007 12:40

oooh I agree, this is very annoying. I know dh looks down his nose at the vast amount of crime fiction I read (in fact, I'm reading a Carl Hiaasen - Skinny Dip for the first time at the moment).

I tried to get him to read a Henning Mankell novel about a cult because some high-powered person he worked with had raised it in a conversation and he had mentioned that I had read it and really enjoyed it. He STILL hasn't read it (despite the fact the he devours books) and I have a feeling he just won't read it gggrrrr even though I know he would enjoy it.

Dh and I go a bit mad without books to read. What annoys him more though, is that I have more time to read than him so if we are both reading a Jonathan Coe, we have to get 2 copies because we fight constantly about who has got further in the book.

Elasticwoman · 01/02/2007 22:33

Marina you've just set me thinking - who was it that let Helen Simpson into our household - and I'm beginning to suspect dh. It's the same with Su Doku - he started it and now I'm addicted.

MrsSpoon · 01/02/2007 22:42

LOL, I have recommended books to my DH too and he either cannot get into them (they are much more intelligent than the usual books he reads ) or he just doesn't start them, thinking they are a bit girly or fluffy when they are not (Ian McEwan's Enduring Love being a good example). However I get my own back by refusing to read Jordan's autobiography after he has recommended it to me.

moondog · 01/02/2007 22:46

My dh has had a volume called 'The Modern Shepherd' by his bed for at least 10 years.
It is not a novel.

madamez · 01/02/2007 22:54

NCQ: Brookmyre rules! Please don't judge him by the abomination that was screened on ITV about 3 years ago, his books are sharp, funny, smart and even moving. And he's that very rare thing, a male thriller/satire writer who can create female characters that sound like human beings rather than domestic appliances or wank fodder.

Oh, and if I've qualified that a bit it's because I just don't read 'sensitive man ' books. Tony Parsons is the most emetic sexist bell end writing today. With the exception of John Gray who's just bananas (and doesn't write fiction anyway. It's not fact, either, but it hasn't got a plot or any car chases therefore it's just bollocks.)

madamez · 01/02/2007 23:03

Agree with other MNers about people who don't read being a bit of a dealbreaker - WTF do they do with themselves? I always used to go off people a bit if I went to their houses and there were no books - or maybe there was one Andy McNob (men) or one How to Make Him Love Me (women). Mind you, DS dad is dyslexic. But still has lots of books. I used to steal his books when we were Actually Dating (ie 15 years before DS was conceived) because he had all this wanky media cultural studies stuff that I'd have been ashamed to buy but, having looked the the title, wanted to read. Though some of his books were so wank-media that we used to have apocalyptic rows about them. Ah those were the days...
DS loves books. He's stopped eating them now.

NotQuiteCockney · 02/02/2007 07:04

madamez, I've read quite a few Brookmyers (never saw the TV adaptation. Don't watch ITV generally, anyway.), but they have no impact on me. I can barely remember what happened.

I do remember them being rollicking lively books, well-written etc etc, I don't actually think his stuff is poo, but I'm not a fan, either.

OP posts:
sorkycake · 02/02/2007 07:18

NQC my Dh has read every book he's ever bought me secretly regardless of the title, content etc simply because 'he has to have read it first'. I put this theory to the test a couple of years ago abd bought an issue of Heat magazine ... I know I know...but in the interests of research. I left it lying about but folded over to look like I was in the middle of whatever gripping article there was about Jordan in it, and when he came in from work he nonchalantly picked it up and said "what's this rubbish then?" I go "oh nothing just reading cack to pass the time", when I look again he has taken it to another room and I watched whilst he devoured the whole scabby item.

NotQuiteCockney · 02/02/2007 07:30

Oh, sorkycake, that would drive me mad. You can't read books for people before they have!

I guess I have a bit of the 'must read it first' thing, as I don't like other people reading my newspaper before I have. I don't stop them, though, and DH often reads bits of the paper before I get to it. (He is trained to put it all back tidily-ish, and in the right order etc.)

OP posts:
moondog · 02/02/2007 08:48

Oh yes.
Bad form to read a gift before it's been given (although have had to restrain myself on occasion)
Lol at heat reading dh though Sorky!

Pruni · 02/02/2007 08:53

Message withdrawn

Pruni · 02/02/2007 08:54

Message withdrawn

moondog · 02/02/2007 11:44

Definitely Pruni.
It is sooo ofeensive.

madamez · 03/02/2007 00:25

NCQ fair enough... we all like what we like and if stuff doesn;t float our particular boats then there you go.
Mind you I have the occasional spell of reading chicklit books, but often end by wanting to a) hunt down author and administer slap or b) slap self for reading it. I don't do guilt about eating, drinking, depraved lesbo sex on the dancefloor or even sneaking ciagrettes after having given up smoking, but more than a few pages of some or other Brigdet Clones always makes me feel as guilty as some kind of religious freak.

madamez · 03/02/2007 00:27

Pruni, my sympathies to your DH. Reading just always makes life better somehow.
Oh and I have a handy store full of put downs. The VIz profanisaurus is well useful in that dept.

reallyboredatwork · 07/11/2012 19:43

Fifrybshades of grey

Cortana · 07/11/2012 20:39


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