10 Novels That We Dare You to Finish

Peter Nadas’s novel Parallel Stories, which will be released this November, clocks in at well over 1,000 pages. In an interview with New York, the Hungarian author queried, “Why wouldn’t ­Musil, Mann, or Broch be my contemporaries?” In honor of his ambition,  we’ve compiled a list of 10 novels that could also function as doorstops if you decide to give up on them. Maybe you’ve tried to impress your friends by casually mentioning that you’re finally reading Proust, or you’re the annoying person on the train with the weighty tome in both hands, jostling into your fellow passengers because you can’t spare a free hand — whatever the reason, we salute you, foolhardy readers. Have any of you finished the following novels with ease? If so, let us know in the comments section.

Parallel Stories by Peter Nadas

Page count: 1152

Year released: 2011

Time it took to write the damn thing: 18 years

Story: This novel will be released in the late fall, and New York calls it “an ungodly book — about capitalism and the Church, about communism and no Church; Hungarian nationalists and ­Jewish lumber merchants; gay intelligence officers in Budapest bathhouse bacchanals and Gypsy Gastarbeiters. All of Magyardom seems to be in it, along with wide demographic swaths of Italy, France, Austria, and, especially, Germany.”