You are reading a book and you are not enjoying it. The book is not homework; it has not been assigned by a parent, teacher, boss or your book club. You don’t have to read it. The main character is a nitwit and the writing is terrible. You squirm in pain as the characters get themselves into one convoluted situation after another. The editing is bad. You just don’t care. You are bored.
What do you do? Do you continue to read the book? Do you grit your teeth, strap yourself in and read every last page?
Or do you decide that life is too short to torture yourself with a book that is less interesting than watching paint dry?
Of course, I have several thoughts on this. One is that life is too short to spend on a bad book. There are so many other books out there that are just wonderful. Why would you waste your time on something that clearly is making you want to stab yourself with a fork? On the other hand, I just hate not finishing books. I feel as if I owe it to the book to finish it. Sometimes I just want to finish it out of sheer cussedness (“I’m gonna finish this thing if it kills me…”), which is pretty stupid, if you ask me.
So, what do you think? Do you throw in the towel or see it through until the bitter end?