I think I can, I think I can…I can’t: five books left unfinished

Photo: We Read Better

We’ve all been there. Reading a book you just can’t get into for a multitude of reasons. It’s boring, the narrator is a little shit, the book itself is shit, the story doesn’t work, you can’t relate, the writing style doesn’t sit well, the list goes on and on.

I have always been the type of who hates leaving books unread. Once I have started a book I feel 100% committed to finishing it, but when I dislike the book my little book OCD becomes an issue. I get put off reading (‘why read this book I’m not enjoying when I can binge watch Scandal?’), I don’t touch the book for ages – I will avoid reading at all costs.

When it gets to the point of no return and I really miss reading, but I do not want to read something I don’t like I finally give it up, move on to the next one and – usually – finish it within a couple of days. There haven’t been many books that have forced me to move on, but there definitely are a few. So here we go:

Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens

I tried liking this book, I really did. I loved the musical so much that I really wanted to like the book…I just didn’t. The same issue arose when I was younger and reading A Christmas Carol – I love the story, I love watching the story, but reading it was a drag. In this instance the only thing I can think of is that I just don’t enjoy Dickens’ writing style – which is totally plausible. As someone who has, more often than not, found herself drawn to more contemporary pieces of work maybe Dickens is too old school? Too Victorian? Too..something. I honestly am not sure what it is about Dickens that I find so difficult to read, but I can sure tell you that I definitely did not want some more.
Will I ever attempt again: I remain hopeful though as it is still listed on my Goodreads account as currently reading, but I seriously doubt that is going to happen.

The Luck of Barry Lyndon by William Makepeace Thackeray

I think the most I read of this book was 20 pages before I gave up – it might be a record on how fast I’ve given up reading a book. I hated the main character. HATED HIM SO MUCH. You are definitely supposed to hate this character – he is supposed to be vile – but his narrator voice is one that I could never get behind. Arrogant, definitely not trustworthy, and just so egotistical. I think Barry Lyndon is my least favourite character ever…after Professor Umbridge.
Will I ever attempt again: No. Not even in movie form. Never.

Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West by Gregory Maguire

It physically pained me to put this book on the list, but if I’m being truthful the only part I liked in the book was Elphaba’s relationship with Fiyero – I flew through that part. The rest was just kind of blah…for me anyway. It sucks because I really did want to like the book, especially because I love the music from the musical (I haven’t seen it yet, unfortunately) but the book just wasn’t what I expected it to be.
Will I ever attempt again: Yes, I probably will. I think I only had a quarter of the book left to read, so maybe after I finally watch the musical – whenever that may be – I will pick up my copy and try again.

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

There is only one reason why I never finished this book: it was SO BORING. Hello snoozefest. There are some bits that are better than others, but I’ve definitely read better. I do commend the fact that it is one of the earliest examples of science fiction AND it was written by a woman in Mary Shelley, but I think I might actually stick to the movies for this one.
Will I ever attempt again: Hard to tell, I may pick it up randomly and try to finish it as I was more than half way through…but the doubt is real.

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

I was honestly shocked at this one. It fits with YA series that I generally enjoy, and yet I felt nothing. No attachment to the characters, no need to find out what happens to them, nothing. I was also annoyed with the main character Clary because she just didn’t seem like a real person, and I know that it is YA fantasy but if a character who is supposed to be human (ish) doesn’t have any human qualities I have issues (also when they act about 3x their actual age. Just no). I think I only got about 30% through this book before I finally came to terms with the fact that I wasn’t enjoying it and didn’t care enough to continue. And as a side note: the book cover is just not good, so not good.
Will I ever attempt again: Probably. Just because it is going to annoy me so much that I couldn’t get through such an easy read. Also the fact that so many people are obsessed and love it will probably make me give it another chance. I doubt my feelings will change though to be honest.

Well those are five books I have not finished (there are probably more, but I can’t think of them at the moment). What about you? What books have you just had to put down? Let me know in the comments below or on Twitter (follow me here).

Ta ta for now!


5 thoughts on “I think I can, I think I can…I can’t: five books left unfinished

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  2. Pingback: Audiobook First Impression: City of Bones | Journey Through the Pages

  3. Pingback: #BookBlogWriMo Day 11: #Top10Tuesday – Most Popular Posts | Journey Through the Pages

  4. Pingback: Unfinished Books on My Bookshelf | Journey Through the Pages

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