The older I get, the more okay I am with the idea that I don’t have to finish every book I start. If it’s not something I’m going to enjoy, why spend the time reading it? I know this doesn’t sound like something I would normally say, and there are a few exceptions to this–classic books and other difficult texts that are hard to read can be worth the struggle. No, I’m talking about books you just don’t like, books that don’t spark your interest or keep you captivating.
So here I present, without shame, four books I put down and will probably never pick up again. It’s the #DNF (Did Not Finish) list.
I’d also like to say that I have a “have not finished but definitely want to finish in the near future” pile of books that I did not feature here. These are just books I’m done with. I’ll probably go sell them or donate them to clear up space on the shelf.
Up first: The Trials of Apollo by Rick Riordan. I picked this up because I absolutely loved the Percy Jackson books, but this one was not as good, in my opinion. I didn’t care for the main character, the action didn’t seem too exciting, and it was oddly political for a fun story about mythology. I’ll take my YAL without the hidden agendas, thank you very much.
This one also looks like a great read–right up my alley with the pointe shoe on the cover and the mention of the Nutcracker. Well, I put this one right back down when I got tired of the author’s tone. Too much pop psychology, not enough ballet.
Third, we have Americanah by Chimimanda Adichie. Of all of the four DNF books I’m sharing with you, this was the one I wanted to like the most. Adichie makes some great points about racism and privilege, but I couldn’t connect with the main characters and the story moved really, really slowly.
Cold Mountain is an award winning book that has been made into a motion picture, but I still couldn’t get involved. I didn’t see the main character as an interesting enough person right off the bat. That’s actually a common theme I’ve noticed with all four of these books–if the main character doesn’t catch my attention right away, it’s probably not a book I’ll finish reading.
Have you read any of these books with different results? What’s the key that I’m missing to enjoying these four texts? Let me know in the comments, and maybe I’ll pick one of them back up and try again.
Or maybe not.