Books I Recently Didn’t Finish

Life is too short to force ourselves to read books we’re not enjoying at all until the very end. Although I sometimes persevere to the last page of a book I’m not really liking as much as I was expecting to, I only do so when I sincerely hope that it will get better or the ending will surprise me. I hadn’t DNFed a book in quite some time, probably years. But this month I already didn’t finish two: The Road to Wigan Pier by George Orwell and The Castle of Crossed Destinies by Italo Calvino.

I’d had The Road to Wigan Pier (more precisely the Portuguese translation titled O Caminho para Wigan Pier) on my shelves for quite some time, and to be honest I was not that excited about it. I didn’t choose it myself. It was an offer from a bookshop for buying a certain number of books there. As I was trying to read more non-fiction in November, I decided to finally pick it up. But the writing style was not grabbing my attention, and I wasn’t that interested in the subject being covered either. The book delves into the life of the English working class in the 1930s, which could be a fascinating topic if the first pages focused on just a couple of specific people and were more insightful.

The other book I didn’t finish this month, The Castle of the Crossed Destinies, is a collection of short stories based on interpretations of tarot cards. I was expecting the stories to feature characters based on the cards’ drawings, but I thought the plot would be taken a bit further. However, after reading the first two stories and flicking through the others, it felt like we were just being presented with possible meanings for the cards being picked up by random people at a hostel, which used to be a castle, instead of being told a proper story.

These were two of the books I planned to read until the end of the year, but I didn’t even get to 1/3 of the total number of pages. So, I’m not reviewing nor rating them, as I don’t think I could write a comprehensive assessment after reading just a few pages. I only tend to rate (with 1 star) books that I didn’t finish when I read at least 2/3 of the pages, as after that I think I’m able to put forward my opinions on them coherently and reasonably.

Do you usually DNF books or force yourself to read them until the end? Tell me in the comments!


5 thoughts on “Books I Recently Didn’t Finish

  1. Café Society says:

    I also left a book unfinished this month, or more to the point made a definite decision to stop reading. And, it was a real disappointment because it was by one of my favourite authors, Laura Wilson, but I got about a third of the way in and just stopped believing in the truth of the storyline. When that happens there’s just no point in going on.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Susana_S_F says:

      It must be an even worse feeling when it’s a book by a favourite author. But if we’re not getting any enjoyment from reading, there is no point carrying on.


  2. Emma says:

    Life is too short and there are too many books out there: I abandon books if I don’t like them enough.
    I write about them anyway and I’ve discovered it’s a great way to understand why I couldn’t read this particular book.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Susana_S_F says:

      True! 🙂
      I didn’t feel like I could write a proper review about these two books, but decided to mention not being able to finish them anyway, and managed to understand why better.


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