“Life is too short to read bad books.” I’d always heard that, but I still read books through until the end no matter how bad they were because I had this sense of obligation. That is, until this week when I tried (really tried) to read a book that is utterly boring and unrealistic. I had to stop reading. Do you read everything all the way through or do you feel life really is too short to read bad books?
Once upon a time, I plowed through every book, no matter whether I liked it or not. But as I get older, I feel less compunction to finish books I’m not enjoying. Life is too short, and there are far, far too many books waiting to be read (and re-read!) Particularly now, since nearly all my books come from the library, I don’t have the added onus of feeling as if I’ve wasted money by not finishing.
I have occasionally been surprised by a book – pushed on past the point where I might have set it aside only to find it’s suddenly become quite interesting. And the opposite has happened as well – a book that starts out keen can suddenly flounder along the way.
So, yes, I do occasionally say, “Bah!” and toss the book aside. It’s a bit painful, I’ll admit…but after all, I don’t go on eating a pile of Brussel sprouts (which I detest!) simply because they’re on my plate. There are far too many things in the world one must do no matter what the feelings are. At this point in my life, reading is one of the few things over which I still have a modicum of control. So, I’ll exercise that control, and dismiss a book I don’t like.
There are always lots more to choose from.
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