I have a problem when I read books. I get involved in the story and if I don’t like where it’s going… I stop reading. It’s rare that I actually refuse to finish reading a book, but it has happened. I absolutely love to read so when I can’t bring myself to finish a book it makes me sad. But it happens.
I know that I just posted about books, but I feel the need to post about my latest issue with a book. Before I go to bed I like to read one of the books on my Kindle Fire. I absolutely LOVE my Kindle. I will never stop buying and collecting regular books, but I like my Kindle for the books that I want to read, but I don’t want them taking up space on my bookshelf. Also, it makes borrowing books from my local library very easy!
This is the book that has, most recently, caused me some issues. I downloaded it for free and thought that it would be an entertaining read. It was about the author’s time working as a manager at the famous retail store. I worked in retail when I was in high school and college so I thought it would be entertaining for me since I’ve been on the other side of the counter. The first half of the book was very enjoyable. I liked reading about how he went about solving some problems and the various issues that he had to deal with in his department. Why did I have to stop reading this? Well, he was giving hints that things are about to go very wrong and he was making some bad choices. Perhaps nothing came of it, but he was giving hints that he had an inappropriate relationship with one of his coworkers who also happened to be married. He makes it sound like she was doing it to set him up in some fashion, but since I haven’t finished reading it I’m not sure if that’s true. This guy knows that what he was about to do was wrong, but he couldn’t resist the woman’s smile. GRRRR. Give me a break! She was nasty to him for a good part of the book and then suddenly she becomes vulnerable and opens up to him? Okay, so he can talk to her, but that doesn’t mean that he should let his guard down. It really frustrates me that he would do something to jeopardize his job when he KNEW that it was wrong. My disgust with him is keeping me from finishing this book. I might finish it at some point, but right now I don’t like him so I don’t want to waste my time reading about how stupid he is about to be.
This isn’t the first time that I’ve allowed a character’s behavior to keep me from finishing the book. “Cold Mountain” had me cursing at the main character, Ada, and almost literally throwing the book across the room. Yes, Ada made me that angry. I have very little tolerance for a character who is unable to help herself or even ATTEMPT to help herself. My poor friend, Jamie, had to read various e-mails from me where I would go on and on about this character’s idiocy. I realize that an author will create a helpless character in order to make a point or give them room to develop. I realize that happens, but I just can’t stand it. I tried to read this book, I really did, but I just couldn’t get past Ada’s character. I’ve never seen the movie, either, but that’s a completely different discussion. lol
I don’t know if you’ve ever read this book, or watched the movie. The only actor whom I can remember being in the movie was Billy Bob Thornton. I never actually saw the movie, but it interested me enough that I thought I would read the book first. Luckily I only paid $.25 for it at a book sale somewhere so I wasn’t out much money when I gave it away. I started to read it, but then I really ran into the problem that I couldn’t believe what they were doing. I honestly can’t remember the exact story line or what they were doing that had me so outraged. I think that it was something with finding a plane crash and keeping the money that they found. I think that the people in the crash had died, or maybe they left them there to die. I can’t recall. I just remember that they had all of that money and were keeping it for themselves. That led to a lot of other really bad and immoral choices, and I had to stop reading it. There was so much evil and bad things happening that I couldn’t stand reading it.
There have been many more that I’ve either refused to read, or I didn’t go back to reading them for a while because I was upset with one of the character’s behavior. The second time that I read “Gone With the Wind” I actually stopped reading it for two weeks before I could bring myself to pick it up again. I was getting to the part where Rhett was going to leave Scarlet and I just couldn’t bring myself to read that again. I knew that he had to do what was right for him, but I also knew that Scarlet really did love him and I didn’t want to see either of them hurt.
Am I the only one who does this? Is this normal behavior? Have you ever stopped reading a book and refused to go on for any reason?
Once upon a time I felt guilty for not finishing books once I’d started them. Then, in high school, I picked up a terrible book – the characters were asinine, the plot dragged and I wanted them all to die already so the book could be over. I decided right there that life is too short to read bad books! Now if I don’t like it I feel no compunction to finish it (most of the time) and move on to something better.
The only ones that make me sad are the books/series that are creative and well written but so loaded with objectionable content that I have to stop reading I don’t want that stuff in my head. (George R.R. Martin anyone?)