Tuesday, March 6, 2012
On Not Finishing Books
Not finishing a book always felt like a (this is going to sound like an exaggeration) a crime to me. This is how I looked at things: I bought the book, so, therefore I HAD to finish it. I thought about books the same way I think about food. Not finishing it would be a waste. I thought that way, because I didn’t have much money to spend on books when I was still in school. I had to dig around in my favourite secondhand bookstore until I found something I liked and could afford.
Lately, my views on not finishing books have changed. This change started around the time I started blogging, when I discovered so many books I’d never heard of before and discovered new ways of getting them (downloading them from Project Gutenberg, for example). There were so many books I wanted to read that I didn’t want to waste my time forcing myself to finish something I didn’t even
However, there’s always the chance that a book might grow on you. This happened to me with the Lord of the Rings trilogy. When I first started reading Fellowship, I kept on falling asleep, and I just wanted to start reading something else. For some reason, though, I didn’t, and I actually finished reading the entire trilogy. Guess what? I loved it.
I mentioned in the first paragraph of this post that I used to think not finishing books was a waste of money, but I don’t actually think that anymore. When I set a book aside, I try to think that I’m only saving it for later when I’m ready for it. For example, I tried to Rebecca by Daphne DuMaurier tons of times when I was eighteen, but I kept falling asleep and eventually gave up on it. At the time, I wasn’t really into classics. I’d only read Jane Austen novels and To Kill a Mockingbird.
I read it again last year when I was twenty, and I completely fell in love with it. I didn’t have the patience to appreciate it at eighteen. When I read it last year, I had already started blogging about classics, and had read more classics than I could count on both fingers. I realized how great Rebecca was, because I’d already gain the experience and the patience to fully appreciate it.
On a different note, I just want to say that, yes, there are definitely some craptastic books out there. I recently bought a novel which shall remain nameless in this post, and it drove me insane. Bad writing and paper-thin characters. I want to say that it’s possible I might not be ready to fully appreciate it yet, but I don’t think I ever will be.
What about you? What are your thoughts on NOT FINISHING?