Booking Through Thursday

btt2Life 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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13 thoughts on “Booking Through Thursday

  1. I agree completely. If I think it might just be my mood and not the book, I set it aside for another time, but if the story doesn’t make sense or the writing is bad, I stop reading and never look back.

  2. I’m with you. The more books piled up that I want to read, the more likely I am to toss aside the one that’s boring me and reach for another. Life is too short!

  3. I don’t finish books I don’t like–though I have had the experience of pushing through the boring part (more often when I was a kid) and was glad I had. That happened with both The Count of Monte Cristo and The Grapes of Wrath. Even my first reading of Jane Eyre involved skipping over the then boring part when she left Rochester and nearly married the stuffed-shirt missionary.

  4. Well yes. In your case, that is. You borrow books while I buy.
    I agree though on the Brussel sprouts. 🙂

    I forgot to mention the first and only book I’ve ever placed down: The Great Gatsby.

  5. I feel NO sense of obligation whatsoever. Life IS too short, and there are so many good books out there that it’s positively criminal to waste time on bad ones.

  6. If I make it through the first chapter, I read the book. I may really detest it by the end but I’m committed at that point to the characters and the only time I can give a book the flick then is if they kill all of those initial characters off. I must admit, with bulging books shelves and limited room, less books are making it to the shelf. They are in my stack and once read, unless they are real gems, they are pretty much donated to lifeline where hopefully they will find a good home come bookfest.

  7. Oh my do I know exactly how this feels! No matter how hard I try to keep reading, if a book doesn’t grab my attention almost immediately I put it aside. Generally I go back and tryto re-read it, but whenever I do, I still feel the same way. My problem though, is that I feel an insane amount of guilt! Especially if I’ve just bought the book and even more so if it’s a hardcover. I start to feel sort of….mad at myself for not being able to read it and then force myself to take a little break from books…which usually lasts only 3 days 😉
    Like some of the other comments, there are too many books I want to read and so even if I do feel guilty, I can’t force myself to read something that bores me.

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