Not finishing books, or DNFing as we in the book community would commonly say, is something that has been at the top of my mind recently.
I thought that I wasn’t usually one to DNF books unless I had a valid reason like having to read a certain number of books over a short time scale for college, university etc, needing a temporary break from a a chunky book, I’m not in the right mood for it… that kind of thing.
But when I was sorting out my new book journal (something I’ve been wanting to do for a while) I’ve discovered that I have been DNFing a lot of books since the start of the year. I have at least two a month and I don’t know if I just started being really picky or I’ve come to the conclusion that life is too short to continue reading books I’m not a fan of.
If that is the case, then why did I finish books like Dark Days Club by Alison Goodman, Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell, An Abundance of Katherines by John Green when they were clearly not books that I enjoyed?
Maybe it’s because they are popular books? That I personally needed to see what the hype was about? And maybe because I thought that I would come to like them the more I read and understood the stories.
It obviously didn’t work like that because I still don’t like them.
So what makes me decide whether I DNF or continue a book?
The only response I can think of is my own stubbornness and curiosity. If I know that my friends like a particular book, I want to be able to join in our group chats instead of feeling left out because I didn’t finish it. Though, I wouldn’t feel bad that I didn’t like it because I know that my opinions would be valid and taken into consideration. What it then does is create a balanced discussion, even if I was the only person to not like it. It would tell me that whilst our book tastes might be similar, we each still do have our own personal preferences.
On the other hand, when I do DNF a book, especially if it is a popular and well-loved book, I feel annoyed with myself because I should be able to finish it regardless of my personal feelings. But then the other side of the coin is that I finish a book I don’t like and get annoyed with myself because I know I should have stopped reading it.
For me, DNFing a book doesn’t seem so straightforward as it ought to be.
And for that I’m opening this up to all of you.
What is your stance on DNFing books?
Do you get to a point during any book, when you think this isn’t for me?
Thanks for reading and have a good day!