Top Ten Tuesday: The Last Ten Books I Abandoned

Hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl

Person reading a book. I’ve been abandoning books more regularly these past few months. Have any of you noticed the same thing about your reading habits

Here are ten books that I recently started reading but couldn’t finish for reasons I’ll explain below.

1. Nests, Eggs, Birds: An Illustrated Aviary by  Kelsey Oseid

Why I Stopped Reading: I originally thought it was written for adults, but it read like something intended for kids.

2. Cat Out of Hell by Lynne Truss

Why I Stopped Reading: I couldn’t get into the writing style at all.

3. The Last Plague: Spanish Influenza and the Politics of Public Health in Canada
by Mark Osborne Humphries

Why I Stopped Reading: It felt like reading a dry textbook…and I’m one of those delightfully nerdy people who loves history and reads textbooks for fun.

4. Lake Erie Stories by Chad Fraser

Why I Stopped Reading: See also #3.

5. Ingredients: The Strange Chemistry of What We Put in Us and on Us by George Zaidan

Why I Stopped Reading: The author over-explained everything. If the page count has been cut back by 30-50%, I’d be raving about this book instead.

6. The Uninvited by Cat Winters

Why I Stopped Reading: See also #5. Presumably, there are ghosts somewhere in this tale, but I gave up on it before they so much as uttered a peep.

7. Epidemiology: A Very Short Introduction by Rodolfo Saracci

Why I Stopped Reading: This was a good read, but now is not the right time for me to be immersing myself in this particular topic. And I happened to DNF it right after The Last Plague, too.

8. The City We Became (Great Cities #1) by  N.K. Jemisin

Why I Stopped Reading: I loved the short story that spawned this novel, but I couldn’t get into the writing style of the book. This is something I may try reading again in the future.

9. Dracul by J.D. Barker

Why I Stopped Reading: It’s been far too long since I read Dracula. I had no idea what was happening or what any of the references were. My new plan is to reread Dracula and then give this another try.

10. Slammerkin by  Emma Donoghue

Why I Stopped Reading: I strongly disliked the main character. Reading about sexual abuse also isn’t something I’m in the right headspace for right now.

103 Responses to Top Ten Tuesday: The Last Ten Books I Abandoned

  1. I love history too but sometimes I can get into them and sometimes no- I guess it just depends on each author and their style! Some can really bring history alive and I love those!

  2. I rarely ever DNF a book but The City We Became ended up being one. I restarted it a couple of times because it was one of my most anticipated reads, but despite the audiobook being insanely well produced I just couldn’t get into it. I plan to go back to it at some point, probably when I feel like I’m in a better headspace for the sheer scope of it.

  3. I’ve had the same trouble with a lot of N.K Jemisin’s works. I want to love her books so much because the premises all sound incredible, but I just can’t get along with her writing. It makes me really sad. That being said, I did still add this one to my TBR!

    • So glad I’m not the only one. I hope her stuff gets made into TV shows or films soon. I think I’d love seeing them in the small/big screen.

      Hope you have better luck with The City We Became.

  4. I live history books but after reading so many I find that the writing style makes a big difference to me too.

  5. Very diverse list! I loved Dracula in college and would be interested in checking out Dracul, bj ut I would definitely have to re-read Dracula beforehand, too.

  6. I am have also been abandoning books more lately. For me, I’ve more often abandoned them before starting, but I’ve had books on my planned spring reading for months that now… I just don’t want to read. Just one more part of the weird times we’re living in, I think.

    I really enjoyed Jemisin’s short story collection, but I haven’t tried any of her longer work yet. I’m curious now to see if I get on with her full novels, or just stick to her shorts.

  7. I gave up on Dracul, too. And I love Dracula. But Dracul was just reading too slow for me. I was 120 pages in and felt like nothing had really happened. So I quit.

  8. Emma Donoghue writes about some very dark subjects. Room is one of those books you have to be in the right headspace to read (or watch) and given the way thing are right now in the world, I don’t think I’d be able to read it. So I could see how another title by her might not be the best thing for a mood reader like myself right now.

  9. I’m glad I recognized none of these haha. And I totally understand about Emma Donoghue (I have Room unread on my shelf). I haven’t picked her books up only because I’m not in the right mindset.

  10. Feeling like you’re reading a text book is THE WORST. I had that happen to me with a book club pick once. It was for Brilliant: The Evolution of Light. It killed me. I was only able to read one chapter.

  11. I’ve never been able to finish any of Emma Donoghue’s books! I always start them but they’re just not for me.

  12. I haven’t read any of these books, but all of your reasons for DNF-ing them make a lot of sense. I especially hate when something is overly wordy and makes the book a couple hundred pages too long.

  13. I also felt a little lost going into Dracul because it had been ages since I’d read Dracula as well, but I ended up enjoying a lot as sort of a ‘well it’s a prequel so everything will just a surprise for me’ mindset, haha! I’ve been curious about The City We Became, but I’m not sure I’m a huge fan of Jemisin’s writing style so I’ve been hesitant to check it out.

  14. Hi Lydia. Thanks for stopping by our site. Your list is very interesting. Thanks for the tip about Dracul by J. D Barker I think its on my TBR

  15. Your list has reminded me that I have Cat out of Hell on my shelves and when I got it, I was *really* going to start reading it at once:)

    I’ve read a couple of Donoghue but this one is new to me…. but sexual abuse? Nah, not at this moment anyway.

    Thanks for visiting my blog and leaving a link.

  16. Oh SO sad about The Uninvited and The City We Became! I loved The Uninvited but I know it got a lot of mixed reviews. And The City We Became I just bought so I want to hear better stuff hahah. And I definitely understand abandoning the ones that felt like boring textbooks, no one wants that!

  17. I was stunned to see Dracul on here because I’ve heard so many great things and have been dying to read it! I love J.D. Barker. But then I saw the why and that’s great insight! Now I’ll have to read Dracula first as well 🙂
    Here’s to growing TBR lists!

    • Thanks. Yeah, Dracul was really well written in the chapter or so I read of it. It’s just something that needs to be read by people who remember Dracula a LOT better than I currently do.

  18. Sometimes I feel as those books should have been cut by a certain percentage as well, and style is also a big factor in whether or not a book with be 5-stars for me. 🙂

    Thanks so much for visiting Finding Wonderland, Lydia.

  19. Definitely a lot of great reasons to DNF. I also try to leave the door open for some that I may come back to, but that does not happen too often. I also understand the whole not needing to read about epidemiology right now. I have taken the opposite route and recently went through a slew of natural and man-made disasters. I think part of it was a defense mechanism, like saying look at all these horrible things that happened, but people survived and went on and made the best they could from a terrible situation.

  20. Oof, I’m glad to see that you will re-read Dracul once you’ve read Dracula. I have Dracul on my TBR but haven’t read Dracula yet, but I’m hoping to get to them soon(ish)! I see a lot of NF that sounds really good but I know would probably be a struggle for me to finish too. That’s my main issue with NF, I always get too bored 🙈 Great list, Lydia!

    • Thanks.

      I hope you enjoy Dracula. I have a lot of good memories about it, so my fingers are crossed that you’ll like it and that Dracul will be just as good.

  21. Thanks for this. Abandoning books is not something I usually do, but I’ve been struggling with The Luminaries — 340 pages in and I find it plodding, dense, and turgid. Wondering how in the hell it ever won a Man Booker.

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