Unfinished Tales;Books I’ve Put Down


Inspiration for this post is brought to you by Tea, cakes and Dreams. Isn’t that lovely.
Why on earth I feel so intensely sinful for casting aside an unfinished book, I will never know. I think perhaps it feels disrespectful to the author, or to the editor, or publisher, or the reviewer or all the other people persons and bodies responsible for bringing this book to my attention, and assuring me that all the wonder and magic of the world of literature where contained betwixt it’s pages. I think it feels big headed to think of all these people, and of all those who have gleaned joy from the book in your fingers, and of how the author slogged, and there is no other word for it because writing, we all agree, is hard work, but yes SLOGGED at the work of fiction you are endeavouring to read. And then you turn around, look all these people in the eye, place, perhaps, your hand on your hip and assert loudly; “Well I think it’s BORING!”
Yes, a big-headed, indeed pigheaded also as my spellchecker thought I meant, child is all you can feel whenever kind of sentiment is running through you.
And yet, in all rational and sensibleness, we must admit that fiction writing is, like all art, not a one-size-fits-all product. If art was like this, I would be wearing a Lady Gaga style meat dress now, sitting beneath a massive pink chandelier, I would have no favourites of anything and all reviewers would be either unemployed, or bored with their job.
We must be kind to authors of course, and give their works of art a chance, but we must also be kind to ourselves and admit that sometimes when we are reading we are simply bored. Mind numbingly, eye wateringly, want-to-fall-on-the-floor-and-die-ingly bored. In such cases it is alright to put that book aside, shrug sadly and say ‘this tome is just not for me”. You will not be struck down. And so I give you three books that I have put down in a similar spirit.
Frankenstein by Mary Shelly
I actually got quite far through this book, carried through the first held by some interest in Dr Frankenstein, but when the focus shifted from him to his monster, with drawn out page after drawn out page in a forest with not much happening, I had to call it a day.

Neverwhere By Neil Gaiman
I requested this book after reading The Graveyard Book and enjoying it, but I simply could not get into Neverwhere, however, the book mark remains between the pages and this suggests that someday I might go back to it and have another crack. Perhaps I was in the wrong frame of mind?

The Invisible Man by HG Wells
Oh my giddy aunt it’s dull! So damn dull. A man rapped in bandages moves into a hotel. And that’s it for pages and pages and pages. The characters seem to be skirting around the mystery of the bandaged man and it’s all very thrilling for them, but since the book is called THE INVISIBLE MAN, it’s not to enthralling for the rest of us.

I tag My blogging college Elinor, and anyone else who wants to, to tell us which books you have left unfinished.
Gwen

PS. I am still having problems with wordpress! I’ve managed to get these pictures into my post by copying and pasting from my media library but the Add Media button is still broken. Is anyone else having this problem?I haven’t got a sausage what to do about it.

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About Gwen and Elinor

Two bloging buddies who love tea and biscuits.
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8 Responses to Unfinished Tales;Books I’ve Put Down

  1. I think I still feel guilty about putting down a book, unread because there is part of me that thinks “but it could get better! Maybe I’m missing something!” Also, I feel especially guilty if I can’t get through a book by an author I like, which sometimes happens. Because I have to read so many books all of the time (for reviews and such), in the past couple of years, I have to stop reading books if they don’t interest me instead of forcing myself to march on. Life’s too short for boring books.

  2. Too right! But I still sometimes wonder if Frankenstein got a bit spicier towards the end, not enough to pick it up again though.
    Gwen

  3. kimekerley says:

    I never finished Tale of Two Cities or Oliver Twist so I can understand. I feel bad and that there must be something wrong with me but I just couldn’t do it. P.S. I finished Neverwhere, and I don’t feel that you’re missing out on much.

  4. Aman says:

    I do sometimes feel guilty of putting a book down in between, once I also suffered from this fear that if I put down a book, I might develop a habit of not finishing anything but then I overcame it beautifully. In the nutshell, I guess it’s upon a reader to what to read, when to read, after all we read to experience an enigma an author creates, and if that essence satisfies us, we should read on!

  5. Pingback: Books I Would (or have) Read Again | Life, the Universe and would you pass the custard creams?

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