Digital librarian

Books forgive us

Classics, masterpieces, books that may change our lives, authors recognized all over the world… If I should like it so much, why can’t I stand the reading of this book? Could this reading be for someone else? Is there a universal way to catalog the suitability of a work for each person? It is possible that, after raising these questions, we all have wondered whether it is lawful or not to leave a book in the middle: Will this book ever forgive me?

The literary portal Goodreads[1] published in 2013 a list of the most abandoned books by its users and, according to the results of the survey, the five books that its users had most frequently left in the middle are regarded as classics all over the world. The same page also listed the most common reasons why people often give up the reading of a book. The main one was considering a book slow or boring; the second was the deficient writing, followed by users who abandoned a reading because they considered it stupid. But Goodreads also published, along with the previous ones, the reasons that make the reading continue. Among them, finishing things as a rule is the first one; the following one is the need to know what will happen next and, thirdly, the obsession. On the other hand, the portal also cleared up the point at which a book is usually abandoned: the majority result was that a book that is not enjoyed is normally left between the pages 50 and 100.

And yet, the answer is yes, that book forgives us. In this post we wanted to provide clues that can help us both to give a chance to a work that is hard for us to read and not to feel guilty for leaving it in the middle when we see that we do not like it anyway.

Firstly, Forbes[2] advises us not to worry about the idea that if we leave the reading of a book we lose, since there are countless titles to read, we are not wasting our time if we leave one that we do not enjoy and we pass to another. The magazine also encourages us to alternate one reading with others in order to rest from the book that is being so difficult for us and then continue it. In addition, we must accept that there is something for every taste, so preferences may vary a lot from one person to another. At the same time, we cannot forget that reading should be pleasant at all times, therefore getting frustrated does not make sense: as long as we enjoy, everything else is in the background. In addition, we can ask ourselves why we are reading the book that we do not like[3]. If we find flashes of pride, hypocrisy, etc. among the reasons, it is time to leave it.

If we also believe that we need help to avoid abandoning a reading at the first try, we have found some keys[4] that we can follow. Among them, avoiding going to bookstores too often if they make us accumulate books; setting a realistic and personalized reading routine; and avoiding buying books just because they are trendy, which we do not even begin to read. Anyway, as we have mentioned before, if we do not like the book at all, it is advisable to leave it, insisting on finishing a work that we do not like is never a solution.

[1] https://www.goodreads.com/blog/show/424-what-makes-you-put-down-a-book

[2] https://www.forbes.com.mx/no-terminar-de-leer-un-libro-nos-hara-libres/

[3] https://medium.com/ana-tambi%C3%A9n-lee/3-razones-para-no-terminar-un-libro-que-no-te-gusta-e888b316e6bf

[4] https://www.salud180.com/salud-dia-dia/dejas-tu-libro-medias

So, when that book comes to our minds with the bookmark in the middle, remember that it is worthless to feel guilty because literature is generous and, above all, it does not hold a grudge.

C. Ródenas

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