Earlier this week I talked about feeling pressure sometimes when it comes to reading and asked if this ever happens with you. Out of those who commented, I got a mixed response, as would be expected, with some feeling the pressure and others, not giving in to any pressure. This brings me to the related subject of today’s post: Abandoning books, especially those that others have recommended.
Now first, I will qualify that these books were not specifically recommended for me. However, in one case, I agreed to participate in a readalong of the book. With the other, I saw it mentioned on a few people’s blogs, including at least two bloggers who said it was one of their favorite books read last year. So, of course, you’re wondering what are the books that were recommended that I abandoned. Without further ado, I will tell you:
- Let The Great World Spin by Colum McCann
- Waiting For Columbus by Thomas Trofimuk
I got the McCann book out on e-book from the library, but unfortunately I couldn’t find the Trofimuk book at our library, either in book or e-book format, so I ended up purchasing it on the Nook. Regardless of where I got them, I didn’t like either one. To start, I’ll just say that neither book seemed to being going anywhere.
McCann’s book, as I understood it, was supposed to be about a tightrope walker as seen through the eyes of various characters. However, it seemed to be about the various characters and wasn’t getting to the point of the tightrope walker. After about 8o pages, which probably was too much, I just bagged it.
Trofimuk’s book, again as I understood it, was about a man who believed he was Christopher Columbus and was telling his stories to a sympathetic nurse at an insane asylum. What’s true, what’s not: I’ve seen Shutter Island and read the book, which I must say was much better than the movie. I get it. I admit that I held out hope for this one longer than the McCann book, perhaps out of a sense of responsibility to the readalong, and abandoned it after 100-plus pages.
At least, those were my takes on the two books, which brings me to the bloggers who recommended these books. No, I’m not going to name them. They know who they are. Maybe they’ll even comment here and that’s fine. This post is not a place for me to single out bloggers with whom I don’t always share the same taste in books.
What it is about is that we — meaning those of us who call ourselves “book bloggers,” which I do (at least that is a part of my identity here) — don’t all have the same tastes in books and, in some cases, movies and TV shows and that is all right. If we don’t like a book or a movie or, even God forbid a TV show (personally I have no interest in shows — or books for that matter– about vampires), we should just own up to it and not try to continue reading the book after we’ve reached the point we realize that we’re not liking it. We can agree to disagree in a respectful manner, I believe.
So the question for you, after all this, is “Do you abandon books? When do you abandon them? What do you do in the case of books that you don’t like but that were recommended to you by others? What about those books specifically recommended for you?” I really haven’t had the latter case, so I can’t speak to that. That might be a little more difficult admittedly than the situations I described here.