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Topic: New thread......What book have you had the hardest time finishing??

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Subject: New thread......What book have you had the hardest time finishing??
Date Posted: 10/20/2008 7:45 PM ET
Member Since: 3/25/2007
Posts: 1,599
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Have you ever started a book that you just couldn't seem to get into or finish? You've plodded along trying to finish it, wondering all along why you're even bothering.

Thought it might be interesting to see if anyone else has the same problem I have. Somehow I hate to give up on a book, even though I'm not really enjoying it. Maybe thinking it's going to get better or just too stubborn to admit I've wasted my time.

I've been reading The Southern Belles of Honeysuckle Way for several weeks and I haven't been able to finish it!! In fact I've read at least 5 other books in the same time period. I keep putting this one back, thinking it's bound to get better if I just give it a little more time....but it hasn't!! I think it's time to give up on it and pass it on to someone else who might love it.

Have you had the same problem??

Date Posted: 10/20/2008 9:58 PM ET
Member Since: 7/23/2008
Posts: 279
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I went so long without reading a bad book - have loved them all until recently.  I have had about 3 recently that I couldn't get into.  The latest I'm trying to get through right now is The Hunting Season by Nevada Barr.  The story seems ok but it is so slow going and the characters are annoying.  I don't think there is one I like or care about but I am just determined to finish this one since I put the other 2 down. 

Date Posted: 10/20/2008 9:59 PM ET
Member Since: 8/13/2008
Posts: 13,147
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I don't read bad books. If they don't catch my attention within the first 50 pages, I post them on my bookshelf here.

Date Posted: 10/20/2008 10:33 PM ET
Member Since: 2/23/2008
Posts: 285
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I forced myself to finish The Cry of the Dove and I hated it.  After that, I decided if I'm not really into the book by 40 or 50 pages, I'm moving on.  I know how good it feels to be reading a book that I really enjoy, and I know how it is to feel like I'm suffering through a book too.  I don't want to force myself to finish a book I'm hating when I know I could be reading one I'm loving instead!

Date Posted: 10/20/2008 11:02 PM ET
Member Since: 2/1/2007
Posts: 208
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The Time Traveler's Wife, I found it hard to follow maybe because I was reading it at night when I was probably tired.  I finally gave up .


Date Posted: 10/20/2008 11:07 PM ET
Member Since: 6/15/2008
Posts: 340
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Although I have thoroughly enjoyed the Stephanie Plum series, I am having a hard time getting into the 7th book, Seven Up.  I took a break from the series and read The Secret Life Of Bees and The Five People You Meet In Heaven.  Loved both of those.  Now maybe I can get back into the Plum series.

Date Posted: 10/20/2008 11:07 PM ET
Member Since: 9/20/2005
Posts: 344
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Last Edited on: 3/27/11 5:03 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/21/2008 8:12 AM ET
Member Since: 7/31/2008
Posts: 290
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I agree with Ashley and Susan , if the first 50 pages don't catch me , I put the book aside.. Unfortunatley , I have ALOT of books sitting on my shelf that have only partially been read.. I feel so guilty because I paid for them and I can't finish them. I am reading Take no Prisoners by Cindy Gerard right now and I love all her books , but this one is making me SLEEPY...



Date Posted: 10/21/2008 9:46 AM ET
Member Since: 4/21/2008
Posts: 13,358
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I agree, I also have a 50 page rule,(sometimes less), and Cornwell's Ripper was one of those.

Date Posted: 10/21/2008 9:50 AM ET
Member Since: 6/29/2007
Posts: 526
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To be honest, I had a hard time with Life of Pi. My friend raved about the book and gave me her copy to read. It took me months to work my way through it, and it left me feeling as though I really wasted a lot of my time. :0(

I kept waiting for the miraculous revelation I would receive from the book, but it just didn't deliver for me....


On the other hand, Patricia Cromwell's Jack the Ripper Case Closed was thrilling for me. I love true crime and trying to figure out "what really happened". I didn't find it laborious at all. I found it quite intriguing...

Date Posted: 10/21/2008 9:59 AM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2008
Posts: 662
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Right now, I'm plodding through Patriot Pirates by Robert H. Patton.  I find the material interesting--it's a non-fiction book about how privateers helped America win the Revolutionary War.  Unfortunately, I'm finding Patton's prose dry and his organization rough.  However, since I grew up near the harbor towns he talks about in the book, I have just enough interest to keep plodding.  (And I can keep hoping it will get better...)

(Besides--I never know where I should shelf a half-read book...)  :)

Subject: Have same rule 50 pages!!
Date Posted: 10/21/2008 10:02 AM ET
Member Since: 5/4/2008
Posts: 644
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I have that same rule about 50 pages I can not get into I am done it gets posted up untill recently I tried to force my way through 2 books made it through Becoming Anna I had heard such great things and then I just felt like I was watching a bad moving. But I finished it and feel as though I wasted my time. Also could not get through On Our Way To Beutiful was supposed to be the best book and I put it down after the second chapter or so.


Date Posted: 10/21/2008 1:42 PM ET
Member Since: 8/3/2007
Posts: 375
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I tried to get through Sushi for Begginers by Marian Keyes. I quit after 100 pages. I thought the characters were unlikeable, and the plot was slow and dull. Ugh, I get bored just thinking about it!

Date Posted: 10/21/2008 1:49 PM ET
Member Since: 4/15/2008
Posts: 880
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"The Birth of Venus" by Sarah Dunant seemed extemely dry and boring to me.  I really wanted to finish because i was convinced it had to get better.  Sometimes books start out slow and pick up later on.  The more I pushed myself to finish, the worse it got.  For some reason I was determined to finish that book.  From now on I'll read 50 or 100 pages (depending on the size of the book) and if I'm not interested, I move on.  My TBR is way to big to waste that much time! 

Date Posted: 10/21/2008 1:52 PM ET
Member Since: 1/5/2008
Posts: 3,383
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i couldn't post _love in the time of cholera_ quickly enough.  i gave it 100 excrutiating pages and gave up, because life is too short to waste on reading blah books.  :D

i am also having a difficult time with _robinson crusoe_, but that's more because of the antiquity of the language than not liking the story/characters.

Date Posted: 10/21/2008 2:14 PM ET
Member Since: 12/22/2007
Posts: 589
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I don't have any problems putting down a book I hate. Sometimes I've held on because of a wicked sense of humor of wanting to know just exactly how bad it would get. I'd make predictions and then see if I was right, giggling through a book that I knew the poor author never intended a person to find humorous.

The books I have the most problems with are ones where I feel ambivalent about the book. I don't like it but I don't hate it either, I really have no emotions about the book. I finish reading them and am left feeling unsatisified. I even kind of wish I hated the book because then I would've moved on with no 'guilt' about quitting.  

Subject: got thru the lst 2 or 3 sookie stackhouse books
Date Posted: 10/21/2008 2:49 PM ET
Member Since: 6/24/2008
Posts: 18
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stopped reading midway thru the next one. They are too strange and somewhat depressing. 

Date Posted: 10/21/2008 3:26 PM ET
Member Since: 6/7/2008
Posts: 74
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I have tried, repeatedly, to read Joseph Heller's "Catch 22" and never could get past the first 50 pages.  I know it is considered a classic, and I am a person who normally can read just about anything, but with Heller I just surrender.  I even tried to read Heller's "Something Happened" to see if I could get past my Catch 22 over "Catch 22"--nothing happened.

Date Posted: 10/21/2008 3:26 PM ET
Member Since: 6/18/2008
Posts: 1,050
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The last book I gave up on was Going Down by Jennifer Belle. The premise sounded so interesting, but it just flopped.

My problem, currently, is that I have a whole bookshelf full and am having a hard time picking one to start.

Date Posted: 10/21/2008 3:59 PM ET
Member Since: 8/13/2008
Posts: 13,147
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I am really sorry I sent you a book you didn't like Brandi! :P Though I gave up on it halfway too. You never know who will enjoy what!

I agree completely about not being able to pick from so many good looking books!! AHHH!

niffir - ,
Date Posted: 10/21/2008 4:22 PM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2008
Posts: 495
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It took me ages to get through A Confederacy of Dunces.  Everyone said it was great...I lived in New Orleans while reading it...I was suppose to adore it and find it terribly witty.  I just found it terrible.  It took me 3 tries over about 5 years to finish the thing, and I wish I'd never bothered.

Date Posted: 10/21/2008 4:50 PM ET
Member Since: 9/25/2007
Posts: 357
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I am pretty stubborn and usually try to make it through books, but since I've been on PBS, I have so many to read that it just doesn't seem worth it to me if the book isn't compelling.  Life is too short, and I left school years ago, so who's going to care if I don't finish a book?  I'm not being graded on it or anything.

There have been two books in the last couple of months that come to mind.  One was The Welsh Girl.  I normally love WWII stories, but the characters just didn't interest me enough to keep going.  The second was Ten Days in the Hills by Jane Smiley.  I normally love her stuff, but she started bitchin' about politics in the beginning of the book, and I had just come off a very exhausting and distressing stint volunteering for a candidate who did not win her party's nomination, and I just had to put that one down for good.  I was just not in the mood.  I've decided that I would rather escape into a book to get away from real life, not be dragged down by it.   Like I said, life is too short and I have too many books to read!

But they were snatched up right away, so I hope the next owners enjoyed them.

Date Posted: 10/21/2008 5:07 PM ET
Member Since: 5/19/2008
Posts: 2
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War and Peace.  I'm really enjoying the book, but looking forward to finishing the 1455 pg. novel. 

Date Posted: 10/21/2008 5:33 PM ET
Member Since: 3/15/2008
Posts: 389
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I recently quit on White Devils, by Paul Macauley...couldn't decide if the author wanted to concentrate on the evils of gene manipulation or corporate bad guys or what.  But here's one I had to force myself to finish and was glad I did: An Instance of the Fingerpost by Ian Pears. I realized that the book was broken up into sections, each telling the same story from a different viewpoint, and I hate that kind of thing. But I was on an airplane and had nothing else. I'm so glad I finished it, I read the entire last section at a furious pace, it was great.

Date Posted: 10/21/2008 6:23 PM ET
Member Since: 5/17/2006
Posts: 25
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Right now I am not having that trouble. But in the past if I give a book a chance and it doesn't grab me, then I set it aside and move on. Come back to it later. I have been reading Sherlock Holmes for years (complete works) and then there it the Lord of the Rings...just cannot get into it. Loved the movie and LOVED the Hobbit...have read it a handful of times...those I have kept.  Sometimes when I pick a book up, after setting it aside for months, I read it, and think it was the best story I have read in a long time...I guess it all depends on my frame of mind at the time.

I just discovered Susan Wiggs and Robyn Carr, the only problem I have it putting down their books.