[Belle’s Bookish Tales] WHY DNF’ing A BOOK MIGHT BE GOOD FOR YOU

Isn’t it funny how we feel worse for a book than ourselves?

Ask a bookworm why they don’t just leave an unlikable book and their answers will be thick with guilt.

BUT EVERYONE LOVES THIS BOOK!

BUT I SPENT MONEY ON THIS!

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I’M BETRAYING THE AUTHOR!

I AM A BOOKWORM, NO BOOK GOES UNFINISHED!

In short, they’re pressured to read a book.

As a bookworm sometimes we tend to believe we need to love EVERY SINGLE BOOK otherwise we’re a dishonour to the community.

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A relationship with a book is probably the worst relationship one can have. Even if you did have the strength to leave the book there’s going to be a lot of “what if”

WHAT IF IT GETS BETTER?

WHAT IF I MISS OUT?

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WHAT IF I GET PLAGUED BY NIGHTMARES OF UNFINISHED BOOKS?

WHAT IF THE AUTHOR FINDS OUT?

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Unlikely chance of that happening, unless YOU decide to tell the author that.

So going against every logic, I’m here to tell you that IT’S COMPLETELY OKAY TO LEAVE A BOOK UNFINISHED!

First of all, plowing through a book you don’t enjoy leads you directly into a reading slump. You may even end up convinced that there’s no more hope for the genre! You’ll be more hesitant to pick other books because you fear that they will all turn out like the last book. Your TBR is already massive enough are you really ready to sacrifice glorious books for one you don’t even enjoy?

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Do you know that your sour reading experience can even affect other activities. I’m not sure about you but I find that what I read can sometimes affect other aspects of my life. If I don’t like a book I’m reading I tend to be more sluggish and anxious about picking up the book. So I put off reading the book or reading in general! It’s a whole cycle of unnecessary anxious thoughts.

The whole point of reading is to calm one’s emotions and to feel happy. It’s our escape; but when your sanctuary is infected with bitterness and exhaustion, is it truly worth finishing the book? You’re wasting time reading a book you don’t like when you could be reading one you love!

Even if you bought the book or received it as a gift there is no obligation to love it! This isn’t a quandary, trust me.

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Personally, I usually give myself a limit. If by the end of around 50 pages I don’t like the book I let it go. Actually there are even some books which I can tell from the first chapter itself whether I’ll like it or not. Although it may seem like giving up on a book, I take it more as a learning experience. By putting down certain books I come to understand the kind of books I enjoy thereby making me more thoughtful when picking my next read. Understanding what elements in a story are unpleasant to you keeps you from buying books on the whim.

So if you’ve been having trouble reading a certain book – and I’m pretty sure one might have already come to mind – take some time out and consider…not.

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Do you have difficulty putting down a book you don’t enjoy? Do you set a limit for DNF-ing a book? What’s one book you had trouble finishing?

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23 thoughts on “[Belle’s Bookish Tales] WHY DNF’ing A BOOK MIGHT BE GOOD FOR YOU

  1. I don’t usually put down the book I don’t like (still giving it a try even halfway) but if it gets worse I’ll just stop reading it because it’s so depressing to force something I don’t really like and like you said, it leads to reading slump. That’s why I only stick with genres that I like and afraid to try new genres as the thought of DNF’ing books scared me sometimes.

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    1. Aaaw…I used to stay away from other genres because of that. I have this thing where I buy an ebook first if I really want to read a book so if I don’t like it at least I won’t have spent too much. I guess, it’s good to be really picky with books.

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  2. I usually give something my best effort because I hate not finishing things. But if I’m at a point where I’ve given it a very fair chance and it’s still a slog, I will try to put it down. Sometimes it’s just that I’m not in the right mood for it at the time and I’ll come back to it later. Other times it’s just not for me and my time is better spent elsewhere. I’ve learned not to feel too guilty about that!

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  3. I have no problems DNFing books. Like you said, I don’t want to get dragged down by a book I’m not enjoying. Usually I can tell within the first chapter or two if I’m really not going to like a book, but I’ve gotten as far as halfway through before putting it down.

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  4. This is so true! I feel myself often in a position where I can’t understand if DNF-ing a book is right or wrong. Especially when I’ve gotten around 50% of it, then it’s like giving up on something I’ve read for so long. And let’s just not talk about DNF-ing ARCs; that’s like the question of ‘did you even see before requesting or taking up one?’. But yes, it’s no big deal and I think even as book bloggers, we can not like a book at some times and not like it so much that we’ve to give up on it. Loved the post! ❤

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  5. I agree with you 100%. However, it feels like just as I think I’m ready to DNF, I hit that one book (out like 50) that WAS spectacular after page 200. I always think about Monstrumologist, which I almost quit at 40% but then fell in love with the story at 50%. It’s rare, but it’s the little devil on my shoulder.

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  6. HahahahHAHAHAHAHAHHA that GIF is on point! XD

    For me it’s usually more like “but I started this book and put so much time into this” xD

    But other than that, I’m a mean reviewer. If I don’t like a book, I’m not going to sugarcoat it. I give 2 stars freely. But I also feel like I should finish the book to confidently say that it’s a 2 star. I have once read one book which basically turned around after AN. ENTIRE. HALF. So that’s a lot! Had I dropped, I wouldn’t have known… It was such an amazing book as well, a 5 star. I wouldn’t have known!

    But some books just have to be DNFed. I don’t have the whole time in the world xD life is finite…

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  7. I DNF all the time it seems. It truly stems for my hatred of reading books I don’t enjoy, which started in school really. Those mandatory lit class reads were boring 90% of the time, but if you want to pass the class you must absolutely read them. Why that is the case I do not know, because forcing someone to read something they don’t like probably won’t teach them any lessons, but it’s the thing almost every lit teacher does. So I basically made a promise to myself to never read a book that I don’t enjoy, to not force myself to read it. I have been surprised a few times (that’s like…5% of the books I DNFed) but those weren’t books I HATED, more that I had an issue with, which isn’t the same thing. But you’re right, reading something I don’t enjoy truly does influence my day and the way I do other stuff. Great post!

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  8. Great post – I needed this today! I’m halfway through a book I spent a dollar on and now I’m just going “meh.” I have every reason to DNF it – I mean, the two hours I’ve put into it have been a good use of $1.00. And I usually don’t even both writing reviews of books I didn’t like (all about keeping it positive.) You’re totally right that our reluctance to DNF something is a totally bizarre phenom 🙂

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  9. Ever since I set my Goodreads Challenge to 1, I’ve been much more intolerant, in that I definitely DNF more than I have in the past. Though now that I think of it, I don’t think I have ever not finished a book I bought for myself (maybe because I spent money on it?) But also probably because of the fact that I’m really good at choosing books I think I’ll like! But when it comes to library books or ebooks, I’m more likely to DNF.

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