Do you give up on books?

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Image: Wiki Commons

Over the summer, I had no wi-fi (I’m still catching up with reviews!) and so I read A LOT. I read widely and often and I enjoyed myself immensely. But I found myself becoming a bit.. pickier. I was less likely to stick with a book if it annoyed or irritated me and I found myself feeling restless.

I’m not sure why this was; I didn’t have a huge backlist of review copies to read. I try and read ARCs and library books first and then my own books last- in fact, I’ve only just started reading the books I was given last Christmas- but this wasn’t really applicable for this antsiness. I just found myself more unwilling to put up with books that didn’t grab me. This is unusual. I’m a stayer. I’ve spent my whole life putting up with stuff and believing that things will get better- uni, friendships, books. But this summer, something just changed. I realised that life was too short to waste on books that I couldn’t become engrossed with.

One book I had to give up because it was very similar to something I had recently read and I felt it wouldn’t be helpful or informative for me to continue reading. It also had the side effect of triggering anxiety: no one wants that. Another book, a novel, felt so absurd (and not in a good way) that I found myself getting angrier and angrier with the characters, the author, myself. Why would I do that to myself? The last book I just found boring. Everyone raved about this writer, but I couldn’t connect. C’est la vie.

Thing is, as I get older, I’m finding my tolerance for things that I don’t enjoy and that take up my free time (hi, running!) is getting quite thin. I am busy and in my downtime, I want to enjoy myself. I want to read to be entertained, to learn, to relax- or all three. If something doesn’t catch me immediately, I’ll give it a chance, but then I’m off. I don’t think it’s a boredom thing, or an easily distracted thing either. It’s just knowing that there are more books in the world to read and I shouldn’t limit myself. Which is what I’m telling myself, anyway.

So, do you give up on books? What makes you give up on a book? What’s the last book you gave up on?

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3 Comments

  1. I don’t give up on books easily but maybe I should. The last one I didn’t finish was Bleak House. I quite like Dickens but this one was tedious. And I tried and failed to read Ulysses, I honestly don’t understand there are people who not only can but also like to read that.

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  2. I definitely give up on books otherwise, I just get into a reading block because I’m not enjoying what I’m reading. I usually give it a few goes, so it will go back on the shelf until my mood or interests change.

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