Monday, March 16, 2009

When to Stop Reading a Book?

Is it bad that in the second chapter of a book I started yesterday, I’m already annoyed by the protagonist? Especially when the novel is a first person-narrative? At this point, all I can think is that I’ve got this protagonist telling me her story for another 300+ pages, and I don't like her or her voice. I might have to set this book aside.

I generally try to make it through more than 25 pages of a book before giving up, but this protagonist makes me want to just hang up the proverbial phone on the conversation that this book is. I like to get a little deeper into a book before realizing it might not work for me – page 100 or 1/3 into the book are two pretty solid markers. With an ever-increasing pile of unread books; however, I suppose a stricter cut off point might be in order.

Now don’t get me wrong, I go into every book hoping I’ll enjoy it and wanting to make it to that last page. However, I’ll sometimes see how much more of the book in question I’ve got to read and compare that to all the other unread books I’ve got and I soon have to make a choice. I’ve already given up on one book this year, and very recently, so I’m reluctant to stop this soon into another book. Before that, the last book I completely stopped reading was back in March 2007, so maybe I'm due again?

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