Thursday, 25 October 2007

Booking through Thursday - abandoned books

btt button Today's suggestion is from Cereal Box Reader
I would enjoy reading a meme about people’s abandoned books. The books that you start but don’t finish say as much about you as the ones you actually read, sometimes because of the books themselves or because of the circumstances that prevent you from finishing. So . . . what books have you abandoned and why?

Glancing through the books I marked as started-but-not-finished on the Unread Books Meme, there seem to be two main reasons why I don't finish some books. One is boredom and the other is because I dislike or can't empathise with the characters. Boredom covers rejected books like Gulliver's Travels or The Time Traveller's Wife or, much to my surprise, Cloud Atlas; dislike will make me put down a book quite quickly, but I don't start so many - I am usually good at picking books.

Recently however I've brought home quite a few books from the library that have been returned unread: this is because I'm always in a hurry at the library and have to pick "possible reads" rather than definite ones. The other is that our library is rather small and the selection limited - as time goes on I find myself having to pick books that I am less and less likely to read. A change of stock is always a huge relief!

I've always considered my reading to be quite eclectic, but now that I stop and think about it, I realise that I choose from a narrower range than it's comfortable to admit. I must remember to try to stretch my boundaries from time to time.



16 comments:

Marianne Arkins said...

I spend a lot of my time blog-hopping to look for book recommendations. It doesn't always work out, but it's fun to find things I wouldn't normally read.

RE: your comment on my blog -- "that and it-itis" is an affliction many authors suffer from.

She looked at the book THAT he gave her. --- This would be a much stronger sentence without the "that".

And, overusing "it" (or any pronoun, I suppose) weakens the writing. Which would you rather read:

She stepped to the hearth and warmed herself in front of it.

Or

She stepped to the hearth and warmed herself in front of the dancing flames.

GAH... I sound like a school teacher.

Happy BTT!

Crafty Green Poet said...

Oh no! You gave up on both Cloud Atlas and Time Travellers Wife because of boredom? They're both sitting in my to be read pile, I hope they don't bore me too!

BooksPlease said...

I too gave up on Cloud Atlas. I did finish The Time Traveller's Wife, but I don't know why as I didn't like and kept moaning about it all the time I was reading it - fortunately it was a library copy, so I hadn't spent any money on it.

GeraniumCat said...

Thanks, Marianne, for the explanation - very clear. I work with academic writers and they have many faults, but not usually those two.

Welcome, crafty green poet: I loved Mitchell's previous books, and I probably will finish it eventually. I was enjoying bits.

Bookplease: I hope we haven't put crafty green poet off altogether!

Charity said...

I have a long commute, so sometimes I grab a possible read on CD. This often turns out to be a good thing, because just about any book is better than the drive-time radio around here.

It's an easy way to stretch.

John Mutford said...

I haven't read either of those too, but I did read Black Swan Green so I'm a little surprised to see a David Mitchell book come up as boring. That said, boredom is certainly an acceptable reason to abandon a book!

John Mutford said...

Ha, those "too". I meant "two" obviously :)

Julia said...

Boredom are the most reason why I would stop reading the books. But that only happen a few times,

Books that you've listed, are the one I have heard about but never buy them. I think my siser did read "The Time Traveller's Wife" (although she not avid reader) and tell me she like it *shrug*

Happy Booking Through Thursday!

Stephanie said...

I'm usually pretty picky about the books I read, so I usually don't have a problem. I'm one of those people that HATES to leave a book unfinished. Don't really know why!

Jaimie said...

I know what you mean about getting narrower in your focus. A while back I read only cozy mysteries for a year or more! Finally I stopped myself but it was difficult to get out of that rut. I forced myself to read new authors and genres and looked around blogs for suggestions from others. I found some great stuff! Have fun!

Melody said...

I used to go to the library for books, but I gave up because some are just so hard to come by (it's even worse when it's coincide with the schools holidays and so forth). Nowadays I rely a lot of book recommendations on blogs. :)

I have heard both good and bad reviews of The Time Traveller's Wife, I'm not sure if I'll pick this up, but that again that shall depends on my reading mood.

Happy BTT!

gautami tripathy said...

stopped getting books from the library. They are not stocking up new books. The interesting ones, I have finished reading. I can't read the classics over and over again.

Lesley (El Zed) said...

Oh I did so love The Time Traveller's Wife. I thought it was so clever of the author to have come up with a theory to support her premise, especially one so unusual. I don't re-read books, but I could actually enjoy that one all over again.
Agree with you about characters.

GeraniumCat said...

Charity, I've never really got in to books on CD, my mind wanders too much!

John, I thought Number9 Dream and Ghostwritten were terrific books and I was really surprised about Cloud Atlas, but I'll probably try it again when I've got plenty of time.

Julia, I think I get bored more quickly these days.

Jaimie, Melody and Gautami: I'm reading lots of books recommended on blogs at the moment, it's great :) but the library is useless!

Lesley, I thought I would love TTW, but it just didn't work for me.

Crafty Green Poet said...

Just to let you know I've just read Cloud Atlas and loved it, totally brilliant book. Now where did i put my copy of Time Travellers Wife?!

GeraniumCat said...

I just decided yesterday that I am going to try the Time Travellers Wife again...and maybe I'll try Cloud Atlas again over Christmas when I've got a bit more time (I'm going to spend the whole holiday Reading. No interruptions!)I'll let you know how I get on, Poet.