Thursday, April 9, 2015

Thoughts for Thursday: DNF Books

Thoughts for Thursday is a discussion post mainly about book related things. It isn't every week, but we try to do it as often as possible.


As a full time student with a job, sports, and extracurricular activities my time for reading has been shortened drastically. There was time when I never even dreamed of putting a book down without finishing. I would finish that book no matter how bad. However, I've realized that I don't see the point in finishing a book I don't enjoy. Why was I wasting my time on something that seemed like a chore? I would avoid the book for as long as possible, but I would never actually put it away. I guess I felt obligated to finish it because I had this secret hope that the end would somehow make up for the other 90% of the book and I felt obligated to finish books that I received through review requests.

The important thing is that you should never feel obligated to finish a book that you dread reading or that just isn't your thing. Honestly, putting down some books that I just didn't want to read felt great because I was free to read something I would enjoy more and I would also get to avoid writing an extremely negative review that would probably end up turning into more of a rant.

I know some people write reviews for the books they don't finish, but I don't think that I'll ever do that. I might write a little paragraph about why I stopped reading, but it's not really a review and I don't rate the book. Mostly because I feel that if I haven't read the entire book I can't give a review it because I don't know anything about what happens after the part that I stopped it. I'm not saying that you shouldn't write DNF reviews because occasionally I actually like reading DNF reviews, I'm only saying that I don't like to.


I am actually in the middle of this debate myself with review requests. Being in the same boat as Erika, I just don't have all of the reading time that I used to. When I miraculously find time between school, projects, skiing, softball, and a different club each day of the week, I want to sit down with a book I will thoroughly enjoy. Some books I get through really quickly, especially printed copies. Print is just so much easier to read visually, plus I can take it out during class where electronics are banned.  It's one think if it was a pleasure book, I would feel a a bit guilty but I could manage abandoning it. However, what do I do when an author asks for a review of their book and here I am 2 months later not even halfway through? I feel obligated to finish and write a review but at the same time I just can't force myself to do it.

I recently pushed all of my requests aside in order to start reading The Ring of Solomon (Bartimaeus 0.5) by Jonathan Stroud. Let me tell you, it feels sooooooo good. This book has been in my possession since I met him at an event almost a year ago and I'm just now getting to it. It was just euphoric to be in control again and calling my own shots. In conclusion I guess I'm basically agreeing with Erika. You do you and avoid all of the negative emotions coming from a book you just can't get through.

On the topic of DNF reviews, I would never be able to do that. Sure I didn't like it and might want to share that, but at the same time I don't feel like it's my place to write about a book I haven't fully read. I know I personally hate when people do the same thing in real life. It's just really annoying to hear/read something when the creator obviously doesn't know what they're talking about. I wouldn't want to contribute to that problem. Not saying there is anything really wrong with the concept, but I personally would never do that. This pretty much brings me full circle to the guilt when I haven't reviewed a requested book that I didn't finish >.<

Do you feel obligated to finish a book or write DNF reviews?


  1. I write DNF reviews, but I base it solely on what I read. I specify in my review why I DNFed and where I can keep talking about certain topics within the story because I had a good grasping before I DNFed or I don't have a good enough grasping.

  2. I'm pretty much in the same boat as you two. I'm a full time student with a fully time job when I'm out of school along with all the extra life stuff so I really don't have a whole lot of time to read anymore. I never DNF books though because I'm one of those people who has to finish everything. I just can't stop without knowing how it ends! This has just resulted in a decreased amount of books I'm able to read during the year which is sad but something I can live with.

    Laura @BlueEyeBooks

  3. I kind of wish I still felt that way because I have a little stack of books that I just couldn't get into. I'm pretty sure I stopped almost at the end of one of those books too. Sometimes I think about going back just to finish them but I doubt I ever will.


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