And I feel no guilt for that whatsoever. None.
And this is obviously not the first time that I've openly admitted to quitting books based on the covers, the blurbs, the first chapter, sometimes even the first few sentences. Other people have shaken their virtual heads at me in disappointment and quoted their own rules, like giving a book a 'chance' by sticking with it for 50 pages or 100 pages or a number of chapters. Some people keep with a book for the entire journey just for the sake of completion and I do not fully understand any of these thought processes.
And I think the the thing that I find the most baffling with this train of thought, these seemingly bizarre rules for reading ... is that it seems to be the only form of entertainment that is being held to this line of 'giving it a chance' You never hear of people needing to finish 25% of their meal to see how they feel about a new food option? Or watching an hour of a movie to give it a chance? Listening to an entire song in order to respect the amount of work put into the finished product? No. To all of the above.
If I hear a song on the radio and hate it, I'll turn the radio off or to a different station.
If I watch a TV programme and something about the first episode drives me crazy (laugh tracks, for instance) I won't sit through any more episodes to see how I feel.
I won't watch more than a few minutes of a movie if I know in those first few minutes that I don't enjoy it.
I know how I feel about stuff, I know the reactions that I have for when I'm enjoying something and when I'm not. So if I pick up a book, and I'm not enjoying it, why wouldn't I stop? I absolutely trust my own judgement. I cannot think of many (if any?) books that I abandoned too quickly, went back to give the book a second chance and found that initial reaction was too hasty.
Also, I'm aware that there is a lot of input into going into making a book the best it can be. So much work by the authors, obviously, but agents, editors, cover designers etc. And they're all working so hard because they believe in the appeal of this particular story for whatever reason and they work in their separate or overlapping areas in order to give this book the absolute best start in life to find the right audience.
So I figure besides the cover design and blurb, the start of the book has to be it, right? That first sentence is crucial. The start of the book. That first chapter. And I think as a reader, a lot has to be conveyed right from the start. The tone of the book, the style of writing, something of the characters. And something in all of that, needs to grab me as a reader. And if it doesn't do that straight away? Then that's a whole team of people who did their best. But I am not the right reader for this book. And I'm okay with that.
There's a whole lifetime of other books in which to devote to my time and energy towards.
Do you have any 'reading rules' ??