History books' writing style

Jun 2017
I'm hoping to find some comfort over an issue that's turning into an obsession of mine.

It's becoming harder and harder for me to read some history works. I have, over the years, grown tyrannical over a certain kind of prose. It started with fiction works. In my youth, I used to privilege plotting over stylistic matters. As far as history was concerned, I also took to embrace events over an author's style, as long as it wasn't too dry. Then I don't know what happened, I guess I started reading more and began to perceive things differently. I started to read novelists like Calvino and poets like Bukowski who changed me forever, truly. Little did I know that it'd leave an indelible mark on what I would seek in history books in the future. Gradually, my preference simply turned to style. I now worship elegant writing and nothing else would do.

It's been now two years I believe that I take 'obsessive' measures as to decide whether a book is worth reading, be it a history or fiction book. And it's kind of killing me right now. Sometimes, it just doesn't work. Sometimes, I simply don't find that book. I've recently tried to find a biography of T.E. Lawrence that would meet my requirements with no avail. I've tried some recent ones that are full of praise. I literally had none of that. Unimpressive and at no point elegant. I spent chapters on each book to decide whether I ought to continue or not. Came out disappointed every time. It's not the first time it happened either, plenty of other subjects that interested me had me wasting a lot of time before finding THAT book that satisfied me fully.

Is this pretentious? Anyone kind of feeling the same? I remember starting applying this thinking when I got interested in the Crusades. Funnily enough the two oeuvres I've read first met perfectly my needs. Runciman and Maalouf.
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