3 Books I Accidentally DNF… Oops.

East of Eden

by John Steinbeck

Oops. You know I love Steinbeck. I really, really do. I just got… distracted. I want to finish this. There is so much I want to see happen – particularly, I want to see the villain get what is coming to her – and so there’s no doubt I’ll finish this relatively soon. But like most classics, the length is very intimidating and makes me hesitate to start again. Please Steinbeck, don’t be mad.

David Copperfield

by Charles Dickens

Let the shame spiral continue, here’s the second book I’ve put a pause on reading… a four year pause.
Yes. You read that correctly. I’ve been working on David Copperfield for four years. Four.
I don’t know if I count this as a true pause, because it kind of feels like I never stopped reading it. In fact, it doesn’t feel like a book at all. It feels instead like an old friend that I check in with now and again. I’ll think to myself, hmmm I wonder how David is doing these days… and there I go, reading a few pages to check in on an old pal.
It will be interesting to see how many years this one takes me…

Anna Karenina

by Leo Tolstoy

Tolstoy, you long-winded son of a gun. If you know how to do anything well, it’s writing ridiculously long books. I repeat: ridiculously.
Can we get really real for a second? What is it with people spoiling plot points for classics? Uhhh. Rude. Just because the title is well known doesn’t mean I know the plot twist, okay?! Quit being a fun ruiner. Maybe I’m just not as cultured as you. I don’t know. Whatever. Let me read my classic in peace without fear of some jerk on the Internet ruining it for me.
That said… thanks internet, for ruining Anna Karenina for me. KEEP YOUR SPOILERS TO YOURSELF. Needless to say, it kind of made the effort of reading this ginormous book not as worth it? I’m hoping I can forget so I can start reading it again.

What books have you put a pause on reading?

There are 8 comments

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  1. Bex

    hahaha! I like the “maybe.” – just wait for it to call to you again! Thank you so much, I’m so glad you like it!

  2. Jane

    I feel like I can come out of the closet now and admit I’ve been reading Catch-22 for about 30 years, Since so much of the book is repetition of the same events from different perspectives, I figure there’s no rush.

  3. Bex

    Haha!!! Jane! That’s hilarious! No judging. Some books take us forever! I’m thinking of starting Anna K. by Tolstoy again but via audiobook. Now I’m not sure if I should pick up where I left off or if I should just start over. Hmmm…

  4. Chauncey Rogers

    Oh goodness. I think I put books on pause all the time–sometimes indefinitely. Right now, I’ve put The Lord of the Rings on pause. I’m in the final half of Return of the King, but it’s a long final half, and I’m reading it aloud to the family, and it’s my second time through, and…. yeah. Started with the Hobbit when my daughter was a couple months old. She’s three now, so I guess you could say it’s taking a while.
    But a book I truly DNF was The Chronicles of Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader. I was trying to read through the series, and just couldn’t get into it. Made it that far, got like three chapters into VofDT, and then set it aside. C.S.Lewis–your reputation is well-earned, good sir, but your stories don’t captivate me at all.
    But who knows? Maybe I’ll go back and finish it one day. Great idea for a post!

  5. Bex

    I love that you are reading LOTR with your family! My Dad read the Hobbit to me when I was a tiny person too. She’ll remember those moments! I remember that it was yellow edition and that it took us so long we had to keep extending the loan out from the library. I think Tolkien is even better read out loud, I read the full series the first time via audiobook.
    I’ll be honest and say that while I love C.S. Lewis it’s really The Magician’s Nephew and The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe that matter most. It’s so hard to get through the rest! I only did it once as a kid and I remember thinking how slow some of them seemed. The Magician’s Nephew is my favorite though.
    Thanks for reading and taking the time to comment!

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