Or maybe I should have said, the TBR pile has way too many books to punish yourself with one that’s not working out for you. I haven’t put up a discussion post for a while now and I’ve been thinking of what I could write about when I was inspired by the book that I’m currently reading: The Cry of the Icemark by Stuart Hill. Hmm inspired doesn’t seem like the right word, more like driven by my frustration to write about it? You see, I’ve been struggling to read this book ever since I started it. It has a decent premise (click on the title to check it out) and I’m a big fan of strong female protagonists in epic fantasy. However, I couldn’t connect with any of the characters and the writing just bugs me. The descriptions can be cut in half and when the author wants to make a point (e.g. emphasize that the main character is brave and strong in spite of her age), it gets repeated several times that I feel like I’m getting hit over the head with it. If you’re wondering why I’m still reading this book, it’s because I got review copies of the whole trilogy and if I can’t finish the first book, I won’t be able to read the sequels.
Anywho, before this post evolves to become a review of that book, I just wanted to make a point – I don’t have DNF (did not finish) books. Or rather, I never post about them. One reason that I rarely encounter DNF books is because I’m picky with the books that I read. Most of what I read are books that I buy or borrow so it’s easy to be choosy with those. Even on NetGalley or GalleyGrab, I only request for books that I’m really interested in. Whenever I start a book, I do the best that I can to finish it even if I’m not enjoying the reading experience. I can always post a lukewarm review when I’m done. And as I usually say in my not-so-positive reviews, I encourage other people to still read the books that I don’t end up loving because my reviews are subjective. If you haven’t noticed by now, I post about how the books that I read make me feel or how I connect with the characters. So in my opinion, it’s all a matter of taste. I can definitely understand why other people would love a book that didn’t work out for me and vice versa. I have no problems with that. What I’m trying to decide now is this: should I ignore the feeling of being pressured to finish a book when there are so many others on Mount TBR that are begging to be read? It has been my primary goal this year to bring down the number of books in my TBR pile to a more reasonable count (like less than a hundred). I don’t want to look at my bookshelf and feel overwhelmed with the number of books that I have. I also don’t want to feel guilty whenever I buy a new book. I feel like there are so many other books out there that I will like or love for me to waste my time on something that seems hopeless.
So, so, so. I want to get an idea of when I should quit, on whether I should continue and give it a chance or give up and move on to something better. Some questions for the rest of you: do you give the books that you read a certain page limit (like a hundred pages) and then you stop when you feel like it’s not a book that you’ll enjoy reading? Do you review DNF books on your blog? Do you feel guilty for not finishing books, especially the ones that you got for review? Have you encountered books that have irritated or annoyed you in the beginning but eventually redeemed itself in the latter chapters?