A Book So Bad

I have a friend whose personal theory of reading evolved over time, so by the time she turned 50 she refused to finish a book if she didn’t like it after 50 pages.

The reason I bring this up is because I’m reading (listening) to a book right now that is so awful I can barely stomach it but the loyal reader in me refuses to give up. What if there’s a revelation coming up that makes the first part worthwhile? I also feel like I owe it to the author to keep going. As a wannabe writer myself, I keep thinking that the author needs readers. Doesn’t she? I’m not going to mention the title of the book right now because maybe, just maybe, there will be a big payoff.

Do you have reading theory like my friend’s? Or do you finish every book you start? The book I’m most proud of finishing is Love in the Time of Cholera. I hated that book so much but I finished it. It’s like a badge of honor.

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4 thoughts on “A Book So Bad

  1. I used to finish everything I started, then I realized that the book doesn’t care, and chances are neither does the author (at least if I don’t know them personally.) I really feel like it works out better for me to give up if I hate it and find something more my style. I do respect your determinations though:)

  2. I know I am a bit late reading/commenting on this post, but thought I would share anyway.

    My daughter had many great elementary teachers. I think this story comes from when she was in 5th grade. Her teacher specifically taught the kids that it was okay to “abandon” a book, meaning if you don’t like a book you start, you don’t have to finish it. The problem is, the teacher apparently was not explicit that this principle only applied to free reading books, or maybe my daughter did not hear that part. My daughter was sitting in reading group one day as they discussed the assigned book, and she calmly informed the teacher that she was abandoning the book. I did not know about this little conversation until parent-teacher conference–and yes, she had finished the book.

    Kate @ BJJ, Law, and Living

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