I’m reading a book that is so upsetting I can’t sleep.

I’m reading a book that is so upsetting I can’t sleep.

80 Answers

    • Small Great Things-Jodi Piccoult. I hope it gets to the great things soon.otherwise I will for once put one of her books aside.

    • I agree – very thought-provoking book, many good twists… but personally, I didn’t care for the ending. Too neat and a bit far-fetched in my opinion.

    • I’ll give her credit: she wrote it so well and it made me so mad that I actually despised some of the characters!

    • Yes but the ending was so far fetched it ruined the book for me

    • I’d agree – I’ve read one other title of hers (My Sister’s Sister’s Keeper) and didn’t care for it at all.

    • I read that book and I loved it! Yes something were upsetting but it turns out good

    • don’t stop. It is upsetting and true, but you will be glad you finished it.

    • i just finished that one, i had to walk away a few times but I love it.

    • I am so glad to hear someone else say that! I finished the book but was even more disappointed by the ridiculous ending.

    • This is the first of hers I’ve read. I loved it–including the ending. Not sure it’s all that far fetched, unfortunately.

    • I’m not new to Picoult, and looked forward to reading it, but had to stop. Way too triggering for me.

  • I’ve found that I can’t read Jodi Picoult as I too find her stories very unsettling.

    • I️ don’t care for upsetting or unsettling stories for the most part. I️ just don’t need the emotional workout.

  • Thanks for the warning……. I need to read to help me switch off and sleep…..think I will steer clear of this one.

  • It was an incredibly hard topic but I think she handled it beautifully. I hope you stick with it, but maybe it’s just not for you. I’m reading Orphan #8 and while it’s well-written, I’m having trouble stomaching the concept. I might have to set it aside for now.

  • I thought it was really good! Definitely a mind churner though and maybe not the best choice for before bed reading?

  • Stop reading, Get a hot drink, put on some soothing music and think about happy times.

  • I’m reading this now. It is thought provoking. It has been a while since I read one of her books. I find I have to put it down after a while and come back the next day.

  • If a book is able to make you that upset but in a good way thats a positive imo

    • Same her plots always sound great but she doesnt do endings well in my opinion and she tries to be too complex, one pov is more powerful than several in scattered timelines

    • The last time I attempted one of her books, I was struck by how utterly boring her writing is. Maybe she’s gotten better?

    • She’s an incredibly successful author. Millions of people love her books. It’s a matter of taste.

    • I’m distressed watching the news. I read for enjoyment and enlightenment.

  • There really was not an easy ending for this book. Everything being ok is not realistic. I think she chooses topics were need to look at from other perspectives. Topics that do not have any easy ending.

  • I read one of her books and it was so upsetting I don’t read her anymore. But she is an amazing writer.

  • Would anyone care to expound on why they found the book upsetting? I have not read it but the story review sounds like it deals with what is going on in America now. Am I wrong? Is it upsetting because it is true?

    • The story is told from three different points of view: a nurse who is a woman of color, a male who is a white supremacist, and a public defender who is a white woman.
      I found it most difficult to get through the white supremacist’s chapters because he’s filled with so much hate. There are also minor injustices along the way, or micro-aggressions, and that’s difficult to handle too. As with any books, I feel for the characters and want to scream at them and/or help them.

    • Yes Maureen K Fonseca, it is upsetting because it is true. I also had to take a good look at me as I read this book. It was upsetting because it made me deal with an issue which it is easier to hide from.

    • Yes, racism is upsetting. And it’s the foundation of our culture, a grim reality for millions of people. As a white person, I read that kind of difficult things because it helps me understand and remember my white privilege.

  • I did not find it upsetting, but extremely thought provoking. It is what is going on all over our country but has been masked from most of the population. For those of us who have not had to deal with this personally, it was yet another eye-opener. Our book club had a long, and heart-felt discussion. Picoult takes the tough topics and brings them to us to think. I believe she is a fantastic author and have read practically all of her books over the years.

    • Well said, Mary McIntyre. There usually is not a nice tidy ending to what she writes about.

    • :I agree with you but I’ve seen prejudice and it sickens me. It’s amazing to me that there r people who say they have never seen it. That being said, we all have some prejudices-we need to look at ourselves more. I’ve read all of her books I think-some I had to work up too. Perhaps I get too close to the characters. I will put it aside for a few days & then get back to it. After I’ve slept a night or so!

  • In Cold Blood is one of those. I was reading it in college, when my roommate was gone for the summer — I was so creeped-out, I couldn’t finish it. (Helter Skelter would be another.)

    • I got Helter Skelter as an audiobook, and frankly it was one of the most interesting books I have listened to. I recommend it, even though I can’t take King.

  • Oh my really you should stop or not read it, try to get some sleep dear!

  • After reading all these reviews I may not read this!

  • Yes..I have stumbled across several of those over the years…I usually have a fluff book going at the same time to give my brain a rest…”sorbet for the mind” I call them. I recently read The Book of American Martyrs by Joyce Carol Oates and the was extremely disturbing but incredibly written…

    • A fluff book at the same time or as the next read is a good idea. Avoiding reading this type of book is something I won’t do. I need to be pushed out of my comfort zone once in a while and realize that there are plenty of issues which we really need to address instead of avoiding.

    • Marie, perhaps you are on the money and I should read it

    • Pam Durkee-Carmichael hope I didn’t sound preachy. Didn’t mean to, meaning what I do to myself. If you are ready to do some thinking though, Picoult is a usually a good driving force. This book made me stop short and realize how much personal work I have to do-good fir me do do that once in a while.

    • Thank you all for the good conversation. It makes me glad I’m on this page. To read & discuss makes it worthwhile.And in this case easier to finish.

  • What was the one about the brothers, one having autism? I knew how it was going to end, but the way the outcome was revealed was weird.

  • I once read a book which affected me like that “Michelle Remembers”. It was so disturbing that eventually I could not even keep it on a shelf, and got rid of it. It was about the abuse of a child by a group of satanists in British Columbia. The Roman Catholic Bishop Remi de Re (if I remember the name correctly) knew about it and spoke on the radio about it, so it was not fiction.

  • I quit reading Misery by Stephen king in the middle and threw the new paperback in the garbage. Although I like him I don’t read his horror anymore just the non horror.

    • “oogie boogie, dirty bird mr man” or whatever she said Just creepy!

  • Don’t read it. There is enough in this world to upset us. I read to relax and feel good. I refuse to read things that are upsetting or watch movies or tv that does the same. There are so many books out there that will bring you pleasure why waste your time on something that doesn’t whether it’s considered great literature or not.

  • Do yourself a wonderful favor and get Gentleman in Moscow and have fun!

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