Weekend Links, Latest Reads and My Bad Habit of Not Finishing Books

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I loved this post on Modern Mrs. Darcy of book recommendations for writers from Shauna Niequist.  Shauna is the author of Bread and Wine, which I recently finished and highly recommend.

The list of books she recommended was interesting for several reasons.  I’ve read a couple of them.  Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott is one of my favorites.  Traveling Mercies, also by Lamott, has been on my to-read list for a while now.

I’m in the midst of reading another of Shauna’s recommendations – Gone Girl.  I have to admit, I’m not finding it to be as much of a page turner as I’d hoped.  In fact, I could probably just abandon it and not look back.  I’m going to stick it out and finish this book though for several reasons.

First, it made the list on Modern Mrs. Darcy for its interesting structure.  So far, I haven’t seen anything  too unusual so that must still be coming (I’m about 40% of the way through it).

Second, almost everyone seems to love this book.  They get wrapped up in it and can’t put it down.  There must be something too that.

And finally, I’ve recently (like yesterday) realized that I have a habit of quitting books.  Another book on the list, The Language of Flowers, was one that I quit after a few chapters.  And last night at book club, we were discussing all kinds of books and there were three or four that I had only read part of.

Modern Mrs. Darcy has a post on not finishing books.  I even commented that I have no problem abandoning books part way through, even read-alouds for homeschool.  Otto of the Silver Hand comes immediately to mind.  We hated that book!

But now I’m wondering if I’m too quick to abandon.  Maybe I need to give books a chance to finish out.  It’s possible that it’s unfair to judge a book on the first 30%.

What do you think?

In other bookish news, this came for me in the mail:


Jessica Fisher is a friend of mine and I’m so excited about her latest cookbook.  Mia actually jumped up and down when she saw Best 100 Juices for Kids.  She loves juice and smoothies!  The book will be available April 15.

One of my friends had a brilliant idea that we should go to Becoming Conference in August.  I’m very excited about this upcoming trip.  Most of the conferences I’ve gone to the last few years have been times of intense learning.  I’ve come away with long to-do lists.  But Becoming looks like a refreshing type conference.  Just what I need!

McCormick Spice has a Pin-Spiration Sweepstakes going on right now.  They’re giving prize packs out every week.  Click here to enter.

Disclosure: I am working with McCormick this year.




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  1. I read all the time, much to the detriment of my housekeeping! In my experience, if a book hasn’t “grabbed” you by about 30 pages into it, it isn’t for you. Time is too precious to waste it plowing through some book that doesn’t do anything for you. Don’t feel guilty about abandoning a book. Just leave it and go on to something else that you might enjoy a whole lot more!

  2. Milton H says:

    I’m impressed you have the patience to get into 30% of the book before dropping it. For me it is probably less than 10% before I’m on to something else. I’ve also become spoiled by having given myself the gift of a Kindle PaperWhite E-Reader so I would quit sneezing picking up dusty ol’ books (that’s my excuse and I’m sticking with it). I now read 2-3 books a week with no weariness or eyestrain.

  3. I’m a teacher, and I always tell my students that there are too many amazing books in the world to spend time reading one they don’t like. I say that if the book can’t hold your attention, abandon it!

  4. You need to finish The Language of Flowers. One of my favorites! 🙂

  5. I also start way more books than I finish. Our local library book discussion read Gone Girl a couple months ago. I only lasted a while before I quit reading it. I have found over the last several years that fiction isn’t near as interesting to me as nonfiction. I have read a few good fiction though. If a book isn’t interesting, or for me many times, the content/storyline isn’t one I care to keep reading, then quit and move onto another. There are so many good books,, why force yourself to read something that you don’t believe will be of benefit? I use Sonlight in our homeschool for a couple of children, and there are usually a couple books throughout the year that they personally don’t like, so I usually let them quit reading them and move on.

    A couple I’ve read lately:

    Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See
    Cell by Robin Cook
    Farishta by Patricia McArdle ( I have just started this one, but it has gotten by attention already)


    • Kelly, I loved Snow Flower and the Secret Fan. I’ll have to look for the others. I like to mix fiction and non-fiction. Either reading one of each at the same time or going back and forth. I’m planning to update my take on Gone Girl in Saturday’s post.

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