10 Toughest Reads in Literature This list might be enough to make your head hurt By Kate Seamons, Newser Staff Posted Jun 13, 2010 4:20 PM CDT 35 comments Comments Good luck mucking your way through this one. (Flickr) (Newser) – Great books can bring great joy—and, in a few cases, great big headaches. Listverse compiles the 10 toughest reads in literature: Finnegans Wake, James Joyce: If you thought Joyce would ride his way onto this list compliments of Ulysses, think again. Written partially in a made-up language of mindbendingly convoluted puns, this novel is often considered unreadable. The Sound and the Fury, William Faulkner: Some readers have found themselves filled with fury after trying to tackle the near-punctuation-less, paragraph-long, stream-of-conscious sentences. Naked Lunch, William Burroughs: Is it any surprise that a book whose pages were written while the author was high on heroin, then cut into pieces, randomly reassembled, and published is a tough read? Moby Dick, Herman Melville: This 600-plus-page book goes on and on—and on—about whaling techniques while remaining light on plot. Click here for the complete list, which includes a high school reading list standard at No. 5.