Occasionally I make myself read books that are the literary equivalent of wheat germ — over Christmas I made myself read Crime and Punishment. It was an uphill battle, I kept wanting to drop it, and did several times. I couldn’t stand it. The characters weren’t actually characters, they were errant ideologies loosed upon the page. Character X believes Y and behaves in accordance with those beliefs, those beliefs dictates every action he takes. It was more akin to watching a game of billiards than reading a novel, and the book is completely unrelieved by style. Deep psychological insight my ass.