Here's the dilemma: Once I begin a book, I cannot stop - even if it is REALLY, REALLY bad!
Does anyone else have this problem?
Last night I got all the kiddos to bed and climbed into my bed looking forward to a couple hours of uninterrupted reading before hitting the hay. As I reached for the book on my bedside table (the book I've been reading for a week now and am on a whopping page 150!), I groaned a little. This current book I've committed to has proven to be less than exciting and even less inspiring.
Why don't I just put this book aside (or swap it on my favorite site: paperbackswap.com)? Because I can't. I can't bring myself to stop reading until the very last word has been duly noted and processed. I've made it through many a novel this way, all the while wondering when it would get interesting and begin to captivate me.
Often, I've been bountifully rewarded with a great ending or a story that finally grabs me in the middle. It's how I made it through The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova and Fortune's Rock by Anita Shreve - I hung in there and am ever grateful that I did. But just as often, I struggle through the beginning pages of a book and reach the end only to be thankful that it is over and I can move on - my commitment to the author complete.
And of course there are countless books that I sail through, greedily devouring each word from beginning to end - like the Kite Runner that I read large parts of while stirring macaroni and cheese on the stove because I was so busy reading that I almost forgot to make dinner!
But what irks me is my misguided need to finish every book I pick up. Even now I feel confident that tonight I'll choose a new book and put to rest the current one (which shall remain nameless), but I know that when that fateful time comes, I'll likely be consumed by guilt and fear that on the very next page - the very next one that I'll never get to - there will be the great break through: those awe inspiring words I've been waiting for.
Hmmm...what to do...