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How long do you give a book?

Discussion in 'Book club' started by lanokia, Dec 9, 2017.

  1. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter

    I'm 14 pages into ''Foucault's Pendulum'' by Umberto Eco and...

    It's just reading like a series of museum features... and I'm bored... how long do I give it? I bought it because I wanted to read something a bit more brainy and literate but... has anyone else read it? Does it get better?

    And how long do you give a book before giving up?
     
  2. lindenlea

    lindenlea Star commenter

    I tend to plod on to the end but do skip through very dull parts but I want to know how the books end. There was a Louis de Berniere recently that I flicked through a lot of. (or - a lot of which I flicked through.)
     
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  3. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter

    I found my eyes flicking over sections of this book... and it was only page 10!...

    I didn't even know the narrators name... I know that isn't essential but it seems all so pointless so far...
     
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  4. asnac

    asnac Established commenter

    I think I'd give it beyond p14. Especially a book with a good reputation (not that I've ever read it). Have you got any further?

    I have no sense of literary duty, in that I feel no need to finish books that have become dull or predictable. In our whole lives we are likely to read only a few thousand books; there are plenty of good ones out there so we should not waste time on second-raters.
     
  5. minnie me

    minnie me Star commenter

    Good question ! There is one book I gave up on once ( Anne Tyler ‘A Spool of Blue Thread ‘ ) and returned to it to discover I loved it. I am of the opinion thing that too many books and too little patience so ....if in doubt move on ...
     
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  6. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter

    I got past the big chunk I didn't like and I'm now 190 pages in... it got better...

    It's not a ''good'' book though... lots of expository info dumps, little actual point being made... but readable enough...
     
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  7. Flere-Imsaho

    Flere-Imsaho Star commenter

    Ha ha!
    I think I got about 20-30 pages in to that before giving up.
     
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  8. captain scarlet

    captain scarlet Established commenter

    I read a book once
     
    lanokia likes this.
  9. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter

    I know exactly what you mean....

    I have no idea why what I'm reading matters at all... it's just a string of info dumps... and I'm bored.
     
  10. Flere-Imsaho

    Flere-Imsaho Star commenter

    When I did my degree I couldn't deal with serious fiction at all - it all just seemed worthy and boring and too much like work. I think I read about 200 Mills and Boon I borrowed off my MiL and my granny instead. It took me ages to come back to proper books. I wonder if you're having literature fatigue - all those 19th C extracts can't be much fun!
     
  11. galerider123

    galerider123 Lead commenter

    Sometimes it's worth persevering for a bit. But if it still leaves me yawning after a couple of chapters it is clearly just not to my taste, and no one is testing me on it so who cares, really. I might skip to the end to see how it finishes just to see if that makes it worth slogging through a bit more to get to the good stuff if I feel curious enough, but generally feel that there are so many books out there it is OK to abandon them- it is meant to be my entertainment, after all.
     
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  12. Vince_Ulam

    Vince_Ulam Star commenter

    Foucault's Pendulum is a great read.

    It's big and difficult to navigate but this reflects the experience of the protagonist. Think of its language & description as an optimisation of your brain to enable the story to run to best effect. Lovecraft was excellent at this. If you are unfamiliar with its themes then I recommend you take short notes as you read so you that can investigate various names, factions & currents at the end of each session. It's a highly structured story which rewards knowledge with mystery.
     
  13. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter

    Well I've given up on it for now... 300 pages in and I had no idea what the point of any of it was...

    Might go back to it... doubt it...
     
  14. Vince_Ulam

    Vince_Ulam Star commenter

    Honestly, you historians. If it's not set out on a straight line it's not worth knowing.

    [​IMG]
     
    lanokia likes this.
  15. friedgreentomatoes

    friedgreentomatoes Senior commenter

    When I was younger I used to make myself finish a book once I'd started, but now I feel life is too short. I usually give it fifty pages - if it hasn't grabbed me by then I give up.
     
  16. sparkleghirl

    sparkleghirl Star commenter

    I loved the Life of Pi and a few months back I started to read another by the same author - 'The high mountains of portugal'?

    It took some getting into but I ploughed on. At the end of the first third I was beginning to get a bit more interested then suddenly it switched to another time and place and the tedium started again. i stopped a few pages into that 2nd part.

    I don't like giving up on books but there are too many good books around to waste time on the othrs.
     
    lanokia and galerider123 like this.
  17. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter

    Well I read 140 pages of Wizard and Glass Dark Tower book 4 by Stephen King and then
    .. .
    It switched to a different story. And I couldn't get into it. At all.

    Might just give reading this series. Book 3 was good but that's it.
     
  18. SEBREGIS

    SEBREGIS Lead commenter

    "Green it was."
    (Porridge - that quote always stuck with me,)
     
    lrw22 likes this.
  19. SEBREGIS

    SEBREGIS Lead commenter

    It depends a bit on the book.

    If various people I respect say it's worth sticking with, I'll give it longer. Sometimes I may read a book because I want to know whats in there. So I took a copy of Homer with me on a boat trip around the Greek islands. A week at sea wit nothing else to read was basically what did it.

    If it's just a book I've picked up, I'll dump it as soon as something else more interesting comes along.

    The worst thing is when I have to review a book, because you can't do that honestly until you've the whole thing. I had to read this one recently and it nearly killed me, Utter drivel. Not that you would know it from the Amazon reviews.

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Castle-Cassiopeia-Dead-Enders/dp/1633882314
     
  20. sparkleghirl

    sparkleghirl Star commenter

    In that case the cover does its job, it would have successfully put me off reading the book.
     
    1 person likes this.

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