When to burn the book

Ever been a victim to a pretty cover and read a book that is just awful? I personally almost make it a point to finish books because I know once I put the book down and start another there are almost no chance of me returning. Not completing a book can feel as a failure and finishing is more of a task than anything.


Nevertheless, the simple fact is that you are not going to enjoy most books out there. We all have our desired genres and protect ourselves from reading books we do not enjoy. Very occasionally we step out of our comfort and pick up a book that may be a challenge. However, this is not about our book decisions but rather when it’s time to let go and here are some of my deal breakers.

1) There are zero intricate characters
I would say all books in a fiction realm involve characters, right? Even with the most boring story, a character who has life can make a book okay and sometimes great. How does a character have life? Well they have flaws, real problems like we all do and most importantly are believable.You may even connect with them because lets face it, we all have very similar issues. You can witness the lack of this in most J.Lo movies, especially my favorite: Maid in Manhattan. Ultra poor hotel maid with a life of hardship accidentally has to pretend to be upper class, oh and looks like freaking J.Lo, seriously believable…


2) Fluff and stuff
Ever read fifty to a hundred pages and there is no development of the story? The author is still discussing the tree in the front yard and how it makes him feel. The tree reminds him of tree from his childhood that he use to climb on. He only wishes that the tree would understand him and wonders if the trees are connected somehow. Blah, blah, blah, stop talking about the damn tree, book is about a murder!  Sorry but I’m out!


3) Roller coaster story
Somewhat opposite of number two above, the story adds so much to the story just to seemingly just make it longer. There is no real point to the date that didn’t pay or the shower that broke before the interview. I certainly have a preference for focuses books that get straight to the point. I understand books have some extra crud added but some can really over do it making the book overly confusing. A six hundred page book on a young girl making it on her own as a single female in NYC is probably a bit overkill.


4) Provides zero insight or connection

Fiction is not always my book of choice, I do dabble in some science and memoir books from time to time. Beauty of these books is the feed the inner nerd and provide insights that fiction can sometimes miss out on. Memoirs especially provide a deep connection with author, it’s like reading their diary. Not sure I’d be an resemblance to who I am today without reading Augusten Burroughs Running with Scissors memoir. So if you are reading any nonfiction book and they are rambling on about nada and havent learned a thing a quarter in then drop that book off at the pool.



5) You begin to not paying attention

Ever read a chapter and go “oh crap, what did I just read?” Now through college I did that often through textbooks but I hope most of you are reading books for the shear joy of reading. But many books I’ve gotten through a few chapters and I lose track of characters or key story elements because I stopped caring. Read to enjoy, so if you are not then move on!


These are some of my reasons, what are yours?

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