Cult classics are a must-read for any book lover, even if they can be difficult to understand. These 10 books have earned their spot among the most adored books of all time, despite their experimental styles and themes. From the highly experimental and confusing Finnegans Wake by James Joyce, to the disturbing and nonlinear structure of Naked Lunch by William S. Burroughs, each book offers a unique and unforgettable experience that is worth the effort. So, if you’re up for the challenge, dive into these cult classics, and let their stories engulf you into a world that you may not fully understand, but will surely treasure.
10 Cult Classics You Need to Read, Even If You Don’t Get It
As a book lover, you must have come across some of the classic books that have been passed down from generation to generation. While these books are highly treasured, some of them may appear to be confusing or even challenging to comprehend. Yet, despite this, they have managed to earn their spot as the most adored books of all time. These are known as the cult classics. Here are 10 cult classic books that you need to read, even if you don’t get them.
1. Finnegans Wake by James Joyce
Finnegans Wake, which was released in 1939, is probably the most daunting of James Joyce’s works. It is a highly experimental novel that uses a unique language that can be difficult to understand. Joyce wrote it in a way that the reader hardly understands what is happening in each scene. However, its ability to leave the reader feeling absorbed and perplexed has earned it a place among the most treasured books of all time.
2. House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski
House of Leaves is a story that employs various writing styles, ranging from academic writing to narration. It’s a thrilling masterpiece that can leave you feeling paranoid even after you put it down. The uniqueness of the book and the way it is presented to the reader is what makes it such a hit among fans.
3. The Crying of Lot 49 by Thomas Pynchon
This book is the shortest book among Pynchon’s oeuvre of works. It follows the story of Oedipa Maas as she tries to uncover a vast conspiracy of Trystero secret society. However, the book is difficult to comprehend, and Pynchon’s dense writing style could be daunting to some readers.
4. Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy
Blood Meridian is a book that follows the story of a youth known as the “Kid,” who joins a group of Indian-hunters during the border wars in 1849. McCarthy’s writing style is breathtaking, yet the book may not be easy to understand. Nonetheless, the book has earned itself a place among the most adored books of all time.
5. Dune by Frank Herbert
Dune is a sweeping science-fiction novel that has been captivating many sci-fi enthusiasts since its release in 1965. It takes place in a dystopian future and follows the story of royal families that are fighting for control of the planet Arrakis. The book’s complexity might be a challenge for some readers, but its world-building and themes are worth the time investment.
6. Ulysses by James Joyce
Ulysses has gained a reputation as one of the most complex and challenging books ever written. The book follows the story of Leopold Bloom, a Jewish-Irishman, as he goes through modern Dublin. The story can be challenging to follow, but its fragmented and exploratory nature is what makes it a classic.
7. Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace
Infinite Jest is a postmodern book that covers a wide range of topics such as addiction, entertainment, and mental illness. It’s a remarkable book, but its length and complexity can be daunting for some readers. However, if you can push through, the novel is worth the effort.
8. Gravity’s Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon
Gravity’s Rainbow is a densely written book that follows a diverse cast of characters spanning across the globe during World War II. It can be a bit confusing to follow at times, but its depth and complexity are what make it one of the best books ever written.
9. One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez
One Hundred Years of Solitude follows the story of the Buendía family through seven generations, in a mythical town in South America. While the story can be daunting to follow, Márquez’s writing style is remarkably beautiful.
10. Naked Lunch by William S. Burroughs
Naked Lunch is an experimental novel that follows the story of a drug addict as he goes through various locations in the United States and Morocco. The book can be a bit disturbing, and its nonlinear structure might be confusing to some readers. However, it’s a book that’s worth the effort if you push through.
Cult classic books are usually challenging to read due to their experimental styles or themes. However, they have managed to earn a place among the most adored books of all time. If you’re up for the challenge, these 10 cult classic books are a great place to start. Try reading them a couple of times, and you’ll be amazed at how invested you’ll become in their stories.