Thursday, August 20, 2009

On Books and Reading

Of all the diversions of life, there is none so proper to fill up its empty spaces as the reading of useful and entertaining authors. - Joseph Addison

So... I was going to do Booking Through Thursday today. I haven't done it in awhile, and thought it might be fun. But...

But it asked what the worst book was that I've read recently and I don't like to talk about those, at least not by name. Some author somewhere worked very hard on that book, and it may be loved by many, even if it wasn't something that excited me. I'm not into being snarky like that. Here's the thing: Of the last, oh, ten books I've started, I've probably finished two. I have VERY VERY little time to read anymore, so I refuse to waste that precious time on something that doesn't grab me right off the bat. I'll give it a couple of chapters, but if I still feel a little *meh* about it, I'll quit.

One book I actually "finished" was "Burn" by Linda Howard, and even that one didn't grab me like I'd hoped. There was a hook at the beginning, but then she flashed back for a few chapters, and those chapters bored me. I almost put it down, but I thought "Linda Howard... come on, you always like her." and kept moving forward, albeit skimming now and then.

Truthfully, this was probably a stellar book. Everyone else that I've seen mention they've read it thought it rocked. I suspect my problem was my limited attention span. Also, I've discovered I really hate flashbacks.

I just started a new cozy series (not the scrapbooking one I talked about a few days back, a different one that shall remain nameless at this time) and it starts with a friend/co-worker of the heroine's getting injured and then... you guessed it... flashed back in time to why the heroine took that job in the first place and WORSE, in her flashback there were flashbacks!!

I think the story shows potential, so I'm giving it another chapter to get to the present and prove to me why I should read it (and future books), but it needs to get that business done quickly.

I did finish a Rachel Gibson book the other day, "Tangled Up in You", and thoroughly enjoyed it, but that was sort of cheating: it was a re-read from my keeper shelf. However, I promptly requested all of her other books from my library to read. I hope she keeps up the momentum. I could really get into finding several books in a row that I enjoy!

What about you? What do you like and not like about books? Is there something that completely annoys you or turns you off?


In other news, it looks like our humidity has broken!! I woke up this morning and didn't feel as though I was swimming in the air. Woot! Just in time for Hurricane Bill to come visit us this weekend. Fingers crossed that he doesn't smack us and/or that we don't lose power. Right now, he's scheduled to hit the Cape in Massachusetts and Down East Maine (that's not you, is it, Groovy?).

My DD said, "It's awful the damage that tornadoes and hurricanes and earthquakes do." And I, in a effort to teach her sarcasm (I said sarcastically), responded, "That's why they're called natural DISASTERS. If they didn't do bad things, they be called flowers or cookies."

At least she giggled.



sue said...

I think I would welcome a storm of Chocolate Chip Cookies or a Lilac Breeze hitting Hooksett:)

MomJane said...

I still remember the hurricane that hit Connecticut when I was living there. It was awful, lots of damage. I hope "Bill" stays out to sea.

I haven't found any really good books to read lately. I find myself going back and re-reading some of my favorites.

I think it is a shame that so many really good authors are having trouble getting printed. I would welcome new books.

Dru said...

Reading is so subjective. One person may "love a book", while another "likes it" and another "loathe it". It is hit or miss with every reader.

If the book doesn't capture my attention by the second chapter and I find myself skimming after that, I'll go to the last chapter to see the conclusion and now this book is history.

If it's a favorite author and I've read plenty when their books are not up to par - I'll try to finish it and hope they get back on track with their next book.

The one thing I dislike in a book is when authors are too descriptive. If I read 2 straight pages of description with little or no dialogue, you have lost me as a reader.

Your humidity broke, lucky you. I think ours is getting worse. Today sweat was pouring off my face while walking to the subway.

Have a good Thursday.

Jennifer Shirk said...

I couldn't finish a book I recently bought. I gave it 5 chapters and really had super high hopes for it. But all the female characters had the same personality and I didn't "get" what it really was about.

Anne-Kathrine said...

Hope Hurrican Bill stays away. Last year we got hit by hurrican Ike and I didn't have power for 16 days. Hope we don't get hit again this year.

Not a big fan of flashbacks too. If a book doesn't keep me interested by the first few chapters then I put it down. Don't have the time to read books that don't keep me entertained lol.

Tori Lennox said...

Flashbacks in a flashback? Okay, that's a new one.

Hope Bill behaves and stays out to sea.

Brandy said...

We rode out a hurricane in MS when hubs was stationed there. We had to shelter and hubs slept through the hurricane making land fall. Still not sure how he did that!
I am not a fan of flashbacks. And if a book doesn't grab me by the end of the second chapter then it's not going to, I've found. Like Dru I'll skip to the end and read that, if it's interesting enough, I may go back and try again to read the book.

I hope Bill leaves y'all alone!
I also hope you have a good day now that the humidity has broken! *G*