A couple of weeks ago I came across a blog post by Trang Via Bookidote that discussed this very issue, and after reading it I was relieved to discover that I was not the only one with this kind of mentality towards literature, and for pretty much the same reason! 

6 or so years ago when I first set up this blog, I would religiously complete any book that I picked up regardless of whether I enjoyed it or not. This was because I felt it was my duty as a reader to at least finish reading something that someone has painstakingly sat down to write, before I give my full opinion on it. This of course is somewhat an honourable ‘fall on your sword‘ kind of philosophy. Which needless to say, I no longer practice.

The reason I stopped doing this is because eventually there will be one book that will break you. The slog of getting through it to finish it will make you so utterly miserable that it makes you second guess anything else you may pick up from a similar genre. The book in question for me was Uprooted. It was a horrific experience for me to read, it took me nearly 3 weeks to finish it(i really did not want to finish it you guys). 

So the question is where do you draw the line on a ‘bad’ book?

I went around the houses for a while on this very question. Eventually I decided that I would give each book 4-5 chapters to grip me, after which if it has failed it goes straight into the “sorry not sorry pile“. Life is far too short to be trudging through even more things you don’t like, especially in today’s climate where escapism is so drastically needed by a lot of people. (myself included)

Have you had a similar experience where you DNF a book? Do you have a different method of dealing with books that you don’t like?  if so let me know in the comments, I would love to hear from you. 

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Until next time, read more books

4 thoughts on “B|t|B – Why my Philosophy on DNF books changed.

  1. This was an interesting post because it is always good to see how other fellow readers deal with things. I am a new convert to the DNF because before it wasn’t so unthinkable to just drop a book! And the thing was the I never judged people who DNF, I somehow admired them because I simply couldn’t do it. In part was because someone put so much work in it, in part was because what if the book became good just after I dropped it, and in part it was sheer stubbornness. And even if rationally I knew that DNF is not a sin, I could not bring myself to do it. And then I tried it. Last year I DNF a couple of books and it was just so… Empowering! Or liberating! I know it may sound a tad extreme but… It was so. And this year I went on a DNF spree, I DNF a lot of books and I am not feeling guilty. Or not too much. There wasn’t a book that broke me, it was a slow slow thing, and I don’t have a modus operandi. Sometimes I try some chapters, or a set number of pages, but it all depends on the single book and the reasons that bring me to thinking about dropping them. In any case it was a new approach to reading, and one that I needed!
    Sorry for the long comment!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Don’t worry about the comments length. Like you said its always good to see how a fellow readers deals with these issues! I think like yourself their was an element of that to how I previously went about reading, the.. what if it gets good, and what if it suddenly turns around and becomes the best book ever! Although, I must admit this never was the case. I also understand exactly what you mean about it feeling empowering/ liberating to DNF. I think the main thing is read what you enjoy and leave the rest for someone else, as one persons trash is anothers treature after all!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Love this because I too found it v hard to DNF if I hated a book. I give it a round 100 pages to grip me and if it doesn’t into the DNF pile it goes. I usually try and figure out WHAT it is I hate about said book after I have DNF’d so I can avoid this situation again. I have a DNFBMDIF pile (Did Not Finish But Might Do In Future. A pointlessly long acronym 😂).

    Also totally surprised to hear you didn’t like Uprooted because I have only ever heard raveee reviews about it!

    Like

    1. It just really wasn’t my cup of tea, but one persons trash is another’s treasure! and i am a fan of acronyms myself and DNFBMDIF seems more than reasonable to me! I have WDIESTO (why did I even start this one!) which is often used when one of my projects goes awry

      Like

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