Giving Books A Second Chance

Invested_Ivana 50

Nell, do you ever give books a second chance?Nervous_Nell 50

What do you mean?

Invested_Ivana 50Well, when you’ve tried a book and just couldn’t finish it, or finished it but didn’t really like it, do you ever try to read it again later to see if maybe you were mistaken in your first impression? 

 Nervous_Nell 50There are a lot of books that I say I’m going to give a second chance to, but then never get around to it.  I don’t know why some books just don’t work for me. If I’m reading a book and can’t finish it or don’t like it, I believe it has to do partially with my state of mind.  Sick or having a difficult time in real life will always make a difference, I think.

Invested_Ivana 50That’s what I think, too – that I’m just not paying attention very well.  Either I’m sick or distracted or just not able to focus.  I do this especially with those books that are really popular.  I think surely I’m missing something because I seem to be the only one who doesn’t like it.  But when I think back on it, when I have given a book a second chance, I still don’t get into it very much.  The Kate Daniels series by Illona Andrews is a perfect example.  I really wanted to like that series; everyone else seems to.  I read the first book, and then I listened to it in audio and I just couldn’t get into it.  I tried a couple of the short stories in the series, and liked one of those, but I just didn’t get hooked.

Nervous_Nell 50I did try Carrie Vaughn’s Kitty series because you told me over and over again to “try it, you’ll like it” and I still can’t say I love it.  It’s okay, no offense, but *shrug*.  I also tried Kim Harrison’s books, the Hallows Series with Rachel Morgan and I can’t propel myself to pick it up after starting it.  I don’t know what qualifies as a “favorite” book to me and why some books just fall flat. 

Invested_Ivana 50And those are two of my favorite series.  It’s just interesting how two people who usually have similar tastes can still vary so widely in what they like at times.  I always feel like I’m doing a disservice to a book when I just can’t like it even though there is nothing wrong with it—like I’m maligning its character for no particular reason.  It makes me sad.

Nervous_Nell 50It does make me sad too.  It’s like this little voice in my head saying “la la la ….. this is boring…..find a new book….find a new book…..find a new book” and then I give up and find a new book.

Invested_Ivana 50Sometimes you just jump over a book in a series that you don’t like, though, don’t you?  Or start with a later book if you heard the first book wasn’t good.  That seems to work for you.

Nervous_Nell 50Yeah….sometimes it does work.  I skip the stuff I can’t get through to a couple chapters down the line or to ending to see if it gets more interesting.  Sometimes I troll the internet looking for people like you who are invested in the story and maybe can relate to the story better.  Gives me a better understanding about some underlying story arc I might have missed. 

Invested_Ivana 50Maybe I should get better at that.  I find it really hard to skip over a book.  Have to read the whole series in order, you know, including the novellas and short stories!  But maybe if I read the second Kate Daniels book, I’d get into it more, ya’ think?

Nervous_Nell 50I think it’s an individual thing.  I think if you were to skip a book in a series, your brain would implode.  Sometimes skipping doesn’t work. I just can’t continue reading that particular story…’s like the gerbil fell off the wheel in my mind.

Invested_Ivana 50Well, bummer.  I guess if we can’t connect with a book, we should just apologize and move on, huh?  It’s not like there aren’t a few thousand other books out there to love and adore.

Nervous_Nell 50That’s how I feel, though I want the author to be aware that it’s not their fault I didn’t like the book – it’s just my opinion.

What about you, our dear readers?  Do you give books a second chance? Leave us a comment and let us know!


About Invested Ivana

I'm currently a freelance line editor, a book blogger at One Book Two, and lifetime reader. I like geeky things. All opinions expressed on this site are my own and do not reflect the opinions of Red Adept Editing or any of my clients, the other reviewers on this site, or this site as a whole.

Posted on June 10, 2015, in Book Chat. Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. digitaltempest

    Sometimes, I will give books a second chance, especially if I think I’ve been unfair to them. Maybe I was in a bad mood or distracted or not in the mood for what it had to offer or 1000 other things. The only books that might never get a second chance from me some time or another are books I DNF’d for problematic reasons. Great discussion.

    Liked by 1 person

    • How often does your opinion of a book actually change? I’m curious.


      • digitaltempest

        That’s actually a good question. I guess it has a 50/50 chance of going either way. For example, I hated Awakening by Kate Chopin when I was in college. Years later, now that I’m a mother, I’ve come to appreciate it more after giving it a second chance. That’s also happened in reverse where I thought I loved a novel and after a second reading, I found I actually hate it. If I don’t decide that I actually do like it, I think I’ve grown as a reader (I like to think I’m a more thoughtful reader now) and can at least find some merit in it somewhere where I would’ve just shrugged it off before.

        Liked by 2 people

  2. Tiara (digitaltempest) just directed me to your site and I am so glad she did! I love your conversations. Great topic!

    I don’t think I’ve ever considered giving a completed book that I didn’t like another chance, though I definitely feel guilty about books I did not finish because they weren’t enjoyable.

    Usually, when I review a book that I don’t like but can at least see why others might, I try to acknowledge that in my review. But ultimately, I just don’t have to time to go back and reread something I didn’t enjoy the first time around.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I agree about the time issue! It can be hard to WANT to give a book a second chance when there are so many others on my TBR pile I need to make time for. Welcome to the site! We’re glad to have you here. 🙂


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