Coffee and… Why I DNF Books I Don’t Enjoy

Today with my coffee I’m hear to talk about DNF books. The horror! I know. Join me?

coffee and...

The Coffee:

This week, I’m drinking Rocko Mountain, a gorgeous Ethiopian filter coffee from Rounton Coffee Roasters.

The Chat:

I haven’t always been a person who DNFs (does not finish) books. I think it’s the English student in me. At school, and more so at university, I was made to read a lot of dull books. I had to see them through to the end, think about them and write about them. If I can finish a book I was made to read, then surely I can read books I chose myself even if they’re not pushing my buttons?

No. Not any more. I don’t know what it was that pushed me over the edge. Maybe I read one to many books I wish I hadn’t. Maybe it was having a kid and a job and less time to read than I used to have. Whatever it was, I don’t force myself to keep going with a book I’m not enjoying.

Sure, I feel a pang of guilt every time I don’t finish a book. I guess the English student in me isn’t totally beaten into submission yet. I do give every book around 100 pages, which I’ve come to feel is a fair chance. If I don’t like it by then, I’m unlikely to change my mind.

So, what are the reasons I give up on books?

  • Ā Why wouldn’t I give up on books I don’t enjoy? Life is too short to be miserable, and my TBR is too big. There are so many books in the world I want to read, that I may as well be devoting my time to something I do enjoy.
  • Some books I just do not like. It’s personal taste. My taste is not going to be the same as someone else’s. I like all kinds of books. Some books I just can’t get on with. If I can’t on with a book, then I move on.
  • Some topics I don’t like. It’s rare I’ll pick a book up if it’s a topic I know I won’t enjoy, but sometimes there’s a sub plot of a topic I don’t enjoy. Graphic violence is really off-putting to me. I don’t want to read page after page of brutal descriptions of violence. Not my cup of tea. If it makes me feel queasy, I’m out.
  • I don’t care about the characters. If I don’t find myself rooting for a character 100 pages in, then I DNF. I need to feel something for the characters to want to finish reading their story.
  • Triggers. Some books contain content that is triggering for me. Generally books with a traumatic childbirth storyline, or anything involving a lot of vomit.Ā  I have some issues (don’t we all), but if a book contains something that pushes my buttons in a bad way, I’m likely to put it down and move on. There are some exceptions to this, but they’re few and far between.

If I give up on a book, I don’t tend to give it a rating on Goodreads or review it on my blog, but that’s maybe a discussion for another day.

Do you DNF books? If you want to share any of your reasons for DNF books, I’d be really interested to hear!Ā 



12 thoughts on “Coffee and… Why I DNF Books I Don’t Enjoy

Add yours

  1. It’s only in the past year I’ve started to DNF books but like you being an English Student it makes you want to finish what I’ve started. But Iove DNF two books so far in the past year and it’s stopped me from going into a major reading slump. Brilliant post-Charlotte!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I can relate to those reasons to DNF. I also cringe a little, thinking I am “cheating” by not finishing a book. Old habits from English literature classes.

    To avoid having to DNF books, I am trying to be much more selective in my choices. If I am not sure about a book, I’ll try to borrow it rather than buy it…and I NEVER want to request a review book that may not be for me. As not finishing those could have repercussions. Sigh.

    I usually give a book 100 pages, too.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I wasn’t allowed to DNF books when I was younger, so in general I feel a mixture of shame, defiance and freedom šŸ˜‚. I mainly DNF for boredom or lack of interest in characters, or if I’m just not in the mood.
    Amy x

    Liked by 1 person

  4. For me, I’d DNF and rate books only if I read half of it. However, if I read only one chapter and I still didn’t like it, then I wouldn’t rate/review it. And I definitely DNF’d books for the same reasons above. šŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m never sure whether to rate books I don’t finish. I have complicated feelings on it, but its good to hear how you decide whether to do that or not. I don’t review them on my blog now because I’d rather write about books I enjoyed.


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