Sunday 2 August 2009

Sunday Salon - how many pages do you give a book?

Good morning Sunday Saloners,

This week seems to have been so busy that my reading has definitely suffered. The girls have been at Fun camp all week, which has lasted from 10am to 1pm every day and I have been rushing to get all my jobs done in that time, then afternoons have either been spent with other children visiting for tea or taking the girls out shoe shopping as they seem to have no shoes for the summer. Thursday was the worst day as I had to create two cat costumes overnight. Now I am so not a seamstress and I now understand why 'stress' appears in that word. I got my knickers in a right twist, trying to make something presentable.
So with all that rushing around, something had to give and unfortunately it seemed to be reading. I spent most evenings blogging and catching up on other blogs, then eventually went to bed to read, only to find I was too tired.
I also found I needed to preschedule a few blogs as I am a little weary that swine flu is headed our way. More and more people I know have caught it and I need to be prepared. So in order of importance to prepare, blog, food in the house, children, animals and hubby. Only joking, darling hubby, you would be a the top of my list ( is he reading this?).

So this week I finished one book and it only had 171 pages in it. I finished Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit by Jeanette Winterson, which I hope to review later this week. The rest of the week was spent flitting between The Lace Reader and Mr Toppit. I am finding The Lace Reader quite difficult to get into and I can't understand why. The story is easy enough to read and there is no confusion in it,but still I struggle. This does upset me, as I have been wanting to read this book since January and now I just can't get into it. I refuse to give up on it, as I have waited so long for it.

How long will you struggle on with a book? If you are not really enjoying it, how many pages will you read before you give up? Or do you read it until the end rather than admit defeat? Personally, I really hate to give up on a book, as I am always optimistic it will get better. I always think that if someone has gone to such great lengths and sweat blood and tears to write it, then really I should make the effort to finish it. That is my caring side, peeking out from my usually hard exterior! So folks, how is it for you? How ruthless are you when reading books that are waning in interest?
So off I trot now for a good old British Sunday roast. Have a good Sunday Salon. Toodle pip!


  1. Wow it sounds hectic there. Our area has been quite lucky Swine flu wise... touch wood.

    Well, I am still struggling with The Ressurrectionist. I think it's the longest time this year it's taken me to read a book but I'm so near the end now I absolutely refuse to give up. It had a few great pages in the middle and I thought it was going to continue on to be great but no. This was one I really wanted to read too and I hate it when you look forward to something only for it to be tat. Problem I think is there are absolutely no likeable characters. you want them all to end up dead at the end LOL!

    I've only ever given up on one book and that was The Ghosts Of Sleath by James Herbert. There was a scene that was really very graphic and quite upsetting and even now if I think about it I feel queasy and I thought, nope, can't read any more. Which surprised me as Magic Cottage and Once I absolutely loved and have read both a couple of times.

  2. I tend to give up on books really easily since I read A thousand splendid suns and Kite Runner. They kind of knocked my socks off and I am finding it hard to get into anything new. Having said that I am reading Peter James at the moment a book called Looking Good Dead its brilliamt.

  3. 'The Lace Reader' is just a couple of books down in my TBR pile and I've been really looking forward to it so I hope you find your way into it soon and I can read how great it is.

  4. I rarely give up on a book. I do find that things that are going on in my life can affect my reading enjoyment and maybe that's what's happening to you now.

  5. Some books are slow starters but if the first quarter hasn't grabbed me, I am reluctant to plow on. I used to finish every book I started no matter what. My daughter said why are you bothering if you don't like it? I used to feel like a quitter if I gave up but no more. Heck, I'm old and there are too many good books out there to waste time on drivel. Although I did manage to finish Girls in Trucks but could not even comtemplate finishing Blonde Roots.

  6. I managed to avois swine flu when it came to our school but it got a lot of people. Hope you and your family manage to avoid it, it doesn't sound like a pleasant 4 days.

    I give books about 50 pages, if i think it is just my mood I move them back to mount tbr if it is the book I bookcross it and hope someone else enjoys it.
    I enjoyed Mr Toppit, although I heard it had received some bad reviews

  7. Fingers crossed that you and your family manage to avoid the swine flu!

    I'm quite a stubborn's very rare for me to give up on a book, even when I know I should. Sometimes I hope they'll get better if I persist, while other times it's sort of like watching a train wreck: I know I ought to avert my eyes, but I can't :P

  8. Oh no, I hope you don't have swine flu problems!

    To me, it depends on the books. If I start a book and I can tell in the first couple pages it's going to be offensive to me (ideas I'm opposed to, that sort of thing), I'll put it down without ever reading it. However, I've picked up classics by authors I really loved and struggled through 200+ pages before finally giving up.

  9. Wow, you've been busy! I hope you and your family manage to avoid the swine flu!

    As for giving up on books, it depends for me. I usually will try to persevere through the entire thing, unless it's something I can tell will be offensive to me early on. Other times I might still try to persevere and just do more skimming along the way. Normally, if I've already made it through 100-200 pages, I will choose to keep plugging away, even if I can't get into the book.

  10. What's going on in your life(and your body) will affect your reading mood. I give a book 100 pages, because some stories require a longer set up and I'm usually glad I continued. But if I'm really not having fun reading it at any point, I just put it aside and try again in a month or even after several months. That sometimes makes all the difference.
    Enjoy the rest of your Sunday.

  11. I don’t like to give up on books, but I must admit that I sometimes do. I didn’t finish Ex -Libris by Ross King. The beginning was so promising, but the rest was bad. I just couldn’t finish it. I didn’t like it at all. The Lace Reader is on my reading list, so I am looking forward to your review!

  12. I usually give books the 50 page test, but i feel guilty about not finishing a book when I do give up on it.

  13. It sure does sound like you've been going crazy there. Busy, busy. Swine flu is still here. Very scary.

    With The Lace Reader I seem to remember it being slow to get into but then it gets quite good. I usually give a book a good 50 pages but with some I know right off they aren't going to be for me and I'll stop reading but if there's even the slightest thing I'm interested in I keep reading. I usually feel guilty but there's so many good books out there that I just can't see trying to keep on reading something that isn't interesting to me. How far into The Lace Reader are you?

  14. I'd generally say 50 pages is my cut-off point, but sometimes that seems unfair and it will stretch to about 100 pages. I do give up on books fairly easily as there are just too many good books out there to waste my time on a bad one. If it's a book I'd been really interested in or an author I respected than I'll more than likely return to it. Timing is such a huge thing when reading.

    I do hope things start to settle down around for you, it does sound chaotic, especially with the cat costumes! Do we get to see the finished products? :)

    Does your husband read your blog? Mine does so very rarely. I often wonder if that's because I waited nearly a year after I started writing it to tell him?

  15. I feel sooo guilty when I stop reading a book. But then, I feel guilty when I continue with a book I'm not enjoying either because I know there are so many other books unread out there.


    It's a double-edged sword. I think I'm just too much of a spazz.

  16. When you think you'll have lots of time to read with the girls away is when you find yourself the busiest! Isn't that life, ugh!

    I don't like to give up on books either but sometimes it's just not the right time for a particular book. I will put it aside, back to the TBR pile and will pick it up again another day. Most of the time when I can't connect with a book it's because I have too much going on either in life or just in my head and a particular book requires my mind to be totally focused on it (some don't require complete focus. I just put that book aside until I have a little more time for it or a clearer head.


  17. Wow Vivienne...what a week. Please do everything to avoid that Swine Flu. You have been so great about visiting my blog even though you have been busy. Thanks!
    AS far as reading...I am pretty tenacious about a book and hang on for dear life. It has to be really horrible to put it down.
    I have Lace Reader also and have been waiting to read it. I hope to soon. I'll let you know what I think then.
    Hang in there this week..... one day at a time. Rest!!!

  18. Hi Viv, I give it a chapter or two before I give up. Sometimes I revisit the book and discover that I actually like it. I think it depends on the timing as well...

  19. Good question! I'm not sure when I "throw in the towel" on any book. Usually I finish what I start, but sometimes I will stop reading a book if it fails to engage me, with the thought that I may pick it up again to finish it in the unspecified future.

  20. Ooo that depends. Usually I'll give it 50-75 pages. Or I find that I'm not really into a book NOW and I might be later. Sometimes I find that just a chapter or two into and and will put it down for a different day. There was one book, Slammerkin, that I had only fifty pages left and was so disgusted that I just quit. Good luck!

  21. "I got my knickers in a right twist..." I swear I could read your posts all day just to read your lovely expressions! I really wish you'd do a vlog...I bet I'd listen to it over and over and over. I swear our "English" just sounds so dull compared to your "English"!

    I used to make myself finish every book I started. The last few years I've turned into one ruthless, heartless woman though. Maybe it's the aging factor...I figure I don't have time to waste anymore on books that aren't cutting it. ;)

  22. sounds like you are busy! If I'm struggling with a book, I'll give it a few more chapters, then give it up.


Hiya, thanks for stopping by, it is always nice to hear what you have to say, so do leave a comment if you have time.