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(Buzzfeed)   What's the saddest book you've ever read and why?   ( buzzfeed.com) divider line
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406 clicks; posted to Discussion » on 03 Feb 2018 at 4:10 PM (23 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2018-02-03 12:48:41 PM  
The Last Picture Show.  Having spent some time growing up in small north Texas/southern Oklahoma towns, I knew a lot of the characters.  It gives that desperate feel of never really being able to get out...
 
2018-02-03 12:56:00 PM  
Not the saddest. But the ending that made me sad. Moon is a harsh mistress
 
2018-02-03 12:56:12 PM  
So the Wind Won't Blow It All Away by Richard Brautigan. It's about a child's view of death, which gives it a big head start toward sadness. But the tone is what sells the sad.
 
2018-02-03 12:56:28 PM  
Maybe Sophie's Choice.

That book really got to me because it was nightmarish and entirely possible.
 
2018-02-03 12:58:14 PM  
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Pick one.
 
2018-02-03 01:03:16 PM  
The Octopus, epic read, nothing ends well,  some things never change.
 
2018-02-03 01:07:17 PM  

TheMaskedArmadillo: The Last Picture Show.  Having spent some time growing up in small north Texas/southern Oklahoma towns, I knew a lot of the characters.  It gives that desperate feel of never really being able to get out...


That book is haunting.
 
2018-02-03 01:07:20 PM  
I finally read Red Notice just recently. I will admit to getting a bit misty-eyed while reading about Sergei Magnitsky's ordeal and, ultimately, death.

On the fiction side of things...I can't think of any off the top of my head, but I remember the ending of Flowers for Algernon being really upsetting.
 
2018-02-03 01:07:36 PM  
Is this limited to fiction only?
 
ZAZ [TotalFark]
2018-02-03 01:17:52 PM  
I can't name the saddest of all without more thought than I care to put into the question today. The World According to Garp was pretty sad at the end.
 
2018-02-03 01:22:53 PM  
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It was over so soon and then I had to leave the bunny. No more soft no more fluffy no more bunny to pat.
 
2018-02-03 01:38:46 PM  

rotsky: [img.fark.net image 324x500]

Pick one.


That's a good choice.

I'd probably go with Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, though.
 
2018-02-03 01:38:48 PM  
The day no pigs would die
 
2018-02-03 01:40:49 PM  
How to Dismember a Live Kitten by Steven Murder
 
2018-02-03 01:44:27 PM  
Art of the Deal.
He lived.
 
2018-02-03 01:56:02 PM  
Louise Erdrich's The Birchbark House. There's a chapter that is absolutely heartbreaking.  It just wrecked me.
 
2018-02-03 01:57:16 PM  

Fat Old Broad: Maybe Sophie's Choice.

That book really got to me because it was nightmarish and entirely possible.


It's such a wonderful combination of the cruelty of the Holocaust and an abusive domestic relationship.
 
2018-02-03 02:21:24 PM  
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A novel based on true events. Lincoln losing his  young son to illness. I couldn't even finish it. It's beautiful but very, very sad.

If we are doing movies, the saddest is Pacino's final scene in Donnie Brasco.
 
2018-02-03 02:28:39 PM  
Life and Fate by Vasily Grossman

I was reading it on the subway one morning bawling my eyes out. It's very much at 20th century War and Peace.

It's not just the plot of this book though, Grossman, who represented the Russians in testifying at Nuremberg, spent time in a gulag for writing it. It only came into print in 1989 when the typewriter ribbons were smuggled out of Russia.
 
2018-02-03 02:30:02 PM  

JerseyTim: Fat Old Broad: Maybe Sophie's Choice.

That book really got to me because it was nightmarish and entirely possible.

It's such a wonderful combination of the cruelty of the Holocaust and an abusive domestic relationship.


Agreed.

I think I read it about the time I started really getting the idea that what is considered bad or evil behavior can often be attributed to trauma and/or illness and/or injury.  That's another reason the vibe of that book stays with me.
 
2018-02-03 02:30:47 PM  
Death Be Not Proud. A memoir written by a father watching his terminally ill adolescent son approach death. It tore my heart in half when I was sixteen and I've never had the emotional fortitude to try to read it again as an adult.
 
2018-02-03 02:31:43 PM  
In the fiction realm, Flowers for Algernon for sure. My god that destroyed me when I was in high school.
 
2018-02-03 02:40:32 PM  
The Bible. Spoiler alert. His Dad arranged for the son's torture and murder to keep Dad from burning people in a fire pit. Dad was a bit of a dick to other people too.
 
2018-02-03 02:50:02 PM  
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2018-02-03 02:54:38 PM  
1984 - because it was intended as a view of a bleak, dystopian future without hope - a future to be avoided at all costs.

And somehow, we are rushing headlong, blindly yet with unseeing eyes wide open, straight into Orwell's nightmare.

Victory Gins all round.
 
2018-02-03 02:57:14 PM  
Probably 'The Flounder' by Gunther Grass.  That book seriously farked me up over the three months it took me to read it.  Three months!  It's that dense.
 
2018-02-03 02:57:27 PM  
A Farewell to Arms.

That ending left me in tears.
 
2018-02-03 03:11:53 PM  
Some really good choices on this list, but the one that hit me hardest at the time (16) was Johnny Got His Gun.
 
2018-02-03 03:11:55 PM  
Jazz, with the parrot that said "I love you".
 
2018-02-03 03:18:18 PM  
Where the Red Fern Grows. It was fifth grade, and the teacher made us read it, and both the dogs died, and my dog was only a whole year old, and it was unimaginable.

I learned to be angry when teachers assigned horrifying stuff after that. French Lieutenant's Woman got raped? Sucks to be her. You fell in love with your cousin who was helping your sick wife, and the two of you rode a sled down a hill to kill yourselves, but you're just paralyzed? WTF is wrong with you?
 
2018-02-03 03:21:03 PM  
The short novel "Requiem" by Shizuko Go. It's the literary equivalent of Grave of the Fireflies.
 
2018-02-03 03:26:12 PM  
Lisey's Story by Stephen King
 
2018-02-03 03:53:25 PM  
Jude the Obscure.

Right from the start it was about a guy kicked hard by life, and the kicking only got harder.
 
2018-02-03 03:58:23 PM  
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2018-02-03 04:15:26 PM  
The Road.

Especially when the father reminds the boy what he should do with the last bullet in the gun.
 
2018-02-03 04:16:11 PM  
Of Mice and Men
 
2018-02-03 04:22:59 PM  
The Adventures of Pinocchio  by Carlo Collodi

The first half is terribly sad and depressing.  Read it when I was 12, and it gave me nightmares.

In the original, serialized version, Pinocchio dies a gruesome death: hanged for his innumerable faults, at the end of Chapter 15. At the request of his editor, Collodi added chapters 16-36, in which the fairy with turquoise hair rescues Pinocchio and eventually transforms him into a real boy. (copied from Wikipedia)
 
2018-02-03 04:25:35 PM  

Uncle Eazy: The Road.

Especially when the father reminds the boy what he should do with the last bullet in the gun.


I was going to with that, but The Road just seemed like a horror novel to me. It doesn't involve the supernatural, but I bet Stephen King wept with jealousy.
 
2018-02-03 04:25:51 PM  
Oh gods....  As Kronicfeld said Death Be Not Proud.  But the only book I can remember sobbing at was Where The Red Fern Grows.
 
2018-02-03 04:30:42 PM  
Robin Hood, the book was sad, because in it, Robin and Marion did marry, but they were later betrayed and both murdered.

Sophie's Choice was sad.

I thought Diary of Anne Frank was sad too as a kid, and for many years even though it was on a reading list, refused to read it because I knew she had died and didn't want to read anything, fact or fiction, with such a depressing ending, but it was worth it in the end.

I recently read The Gargoyle, and it was a very sad love story. I guess it is more sad to me than others because I have a weird or unique perspective of things. I thought it was a beautiful love story, but that even after death, things are very unfair. So that depressed me, to know that cruelty still exists after death.
 
2018-02-03 04:33:05 PM  
In the book, one of the two main characters in a previous life had killed her husband with a mercy arrow to the heart, rather than have him be tortured to death. So in other lives, she has to do "penance"..as does he..for what, exactly, I couldn't ever figure out. Just that a god that would consider it a sin to kill someone rather than let them get tortured to the point to where they make them have lessons in life after life..and many are sad and miserable..

well, I found The Gargoyle to be a good story written by a good author..but very depressing in the outlook about the afterlife. But if life isn't fair..I guess the afterlife isn't either.
 
2018-02-03 04:34:31 PM  
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This one made me a blubbering mess.
 
2018-02-03 04:35:25 PM  
Easy

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Ant
2018-02-03 04:36:08 PM  
The Grapes of Wrath. If you've read it, you'll know why.
 
2018-02-03 04:37:21 PM  
If you go with graphic novels and short stories that later movies were based on, you can't go wrong for depression with "Where the Wind Blows" or "Grave of the Fireflies"
 
2018-02-03 04:38:47 PM  
The Grapes of Wrath devastated me.
 
2018-02-03 04:40:13 PM  
They Shoot Horses, Don't They is on the list.  I'm trying to remember which books made me cry, and I'm coming up short.
 
2018-02-03 04:52:56 PM  

Gordon Bennett: [img.fark.net image 260x291]

It was over so soon and then I had to leave the bunny. No more soft no more fluffy no more bunny to pat.


Sadder than Hop on Pop?? I don't think so.
 
2018-02-03 04:54:12 PM  

Uncle Eazy: The Road.

Especially when the father reminds the boy what he should do with the last bullet in the gun.


Agreed. Big Cormac McCarthy fan and I loved the book, so when the movie came out, I told my wife we needed to watch it. To this day she hasn't forgiven me. She hated, hated, hated how it made her feel.

Now every time we run across the movie, I say, "Hey, let's watch it again!!!1! LOL!"
 
2018-02-03 04:54:56 PM  

Hoban Washburne: Some really good choices on this list, but the one that hit me hardest at the time (16) was Johnny Got His Gun.


Huh, Dalton Trumbo.  Reported.

/Seriously, THAT book is a major downer,
 
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