Last time, I did a post on how to have the perfect first date with a book. This
time, I thought it would be good to address what happens when, after that date
or several, things just arenâ€™t working out. No book will please every reader
because not every reader is meant for a certain book. Here are some thoughts on
how to get through that break up.
1. Ask yourself if you have given the book a fair chance. I am a terrible mood
reader, so if I pick up a NA romance when I really want a YA fantasy, thereâ€™s a
good possibility Iâ€™ll end up putting it down. This might not be because the NA
is a bad fit for me, but rather because my stubborn mind wants what it wants and
will reject absolutely everything else.
2. Try to focus on the specific reason the book isnâ€™t working for you. This
isnâ€™t because you have to defend your choice (a readerâ€™s choice is his or her
own), but because knowing what doesnâ€™t work might help you learn more about your
reading likes and dislikes. I once read a book with a very passive protagonist,
and I ended up putting it aside. I found that the best books for me have active
protagonists, even if they are more thoughtful or less action oriented. I still
need to see the main character making a serious effort for something.
3. Decide if this is a book you might want to come back to another time. I do
this often if I put aside a book because Iâ€™m in the mood for something else.
Sometimes this also might happen if the book is moving a little slower, and you
find your mind wandering too much. You might still want to be friends with the
book, but not desire to pursue any further bonding until later down the road
when a slow book might just be what you need.
4. If the break up is a bad one (you believe the writing is terrible; you find
something personally offensive, etc.), calm down before you hit social media or
a book review site. Your personal feelings need no justification beyond your
own, but acting rashly will likely do no good. The best step is to take a few
deep breaths, go for a walk, etc. and then write a thoughtful, non-bashing
review (if you want) that expresses your feelings while being fair.
5. Donâ€™t immediately write off the bookâ€™s â€śfriendsâ€ť if you didnâ€™t like it.
There are times when I know the story is what I didnâ€™t like, not the writing. In
this case, I will almost always give another book by the same author a chance,
especially if itâ€™s in a different genre. If the writing or some other part of
the book is what didnâ€™t work with you, donâ€™t assume that all other books in the
age group or genre are the same. If one romance authorâ€™s works arenâ€™t a good
match for you, donâ€™t assume that all romance books are like that. You might
discover that romance stories arenâ€™t what you enjoy most, but that doesnâ€™t mean
you will hate every single book with romance.
6. Take some time to decide what you want next. Do you want to focus on
something other than reading for a while? Maybe start a new show on Netflix or
try a complicated cooking recipe you couldnâ€™t master before. Are you still sure
of what you want and are ready to dive back in again? Pick up something else! No
matter what, remember that there are thousands of books out there waiting to be
read, so donâ€™t spend your time on something that isnâ€™t good for you.
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