Bookhearts, you are familiar with my 50-Page Rule and might have seen the discussion on Bookish Twitter among bloggers, booktubers, bookstagrammers, readers and reviewers. I understand writers put their heart, soul, ideas, time and money behind their work. Please recognize so do reviewers!
However, an author should expect honest feedback, not all praise and high ratings. If an author cannot handle or wishes to not see negative reviews, then it is best to not publish. Better yet, if I identified you as such an author that only wants positive reviews, I made a mental note to never read your books again. Because what I'm not 👏🏾 gon' 👏🏾 do 👏🏾 is censor my opinion.
Then there are authors that do not understand DNF (did not finish) posts, such as this one. It is not my intent to be mean. I just don't think it is fair to give a full review on a book I did not finish. How can I? So instead I let other readers know why I didn't finish to help them decide whether to read it or not. For advance copies, I let the publisher know why a full review will not be posted. This helps us to better match future requests.
I also mark the book as DNF so I won't forget that I attempted to read it already. Being an avid reader, I am bound to come across the same books again so I need that reminder. It is not a stamp of disapproval or a warning to stay away. Just because a book wasn't for me doesn't mean it's not for the next reader.
I do not have time to read more than 50 pages just to see if the book might get better. If it hasn't caught my attention by that point, it is fair to stop and move on to the next. And finally, it is perfectly okay to share what I quit and why. If you are not interested, kindly keep scrolling. Take this free marketing and allow my annual DNF blog post to help a book find its intended audience.
Whew, bookhearts! This unintentionally turned into a rant. Bottom line, there are too many good books around to waste time struggling through a novel. My TBR (to be read) pile is way taller than my patience. I have no guilt moving more books to the DNF (did not finish) pile or RBWT (Right Book Wrong Time) list this pandemic year. I was quick to close! So without further ado...
- Layla by Colleen Hoover ~ Too paranormalish.
- Halfway to Free by Emma Donoghue ~ What is happening?!
- Sorry I Missed You by Suzy Krause ~ Ghosts. Ghosted. Gone.
- We Are Not Free by Traci Chee ~ Why are there 14 points of view?!
- The Book of Two Ways by Jodi Picoult ~ Yawn. Wordy. Strug-ga-ling!
- Dear Justyce by Nic Stone ~ I am so not the intended audience for this.
- Saving Ruby King by Catherine Adel West ~ Slow buildup to the hype.
- The Midnight Sun by Stephenie Meyer ~ I'm over it. So over it. NOPE.
- The Wrong Mr. Darcy by Evelyn Lozada ~ Put a halt to train of thought.
- Kim Jiyoung, Born 1982 by Cho Nam-Joo ~ Lost in translation, maybe?
- Black Girl Unlimited by Echo Brown ~ Shell shatters along with my interest.
- The Group by Mary McCarthy ~ Too many to track. Where is the masterpiece?
- Rodham by Curtis Sittenfeld ~ Overhyped. I expected speculative not fan-fiction.
- Girl, Woman, Other by Bernadine Evaristo ~ Punctuation threw me all the way off.
- The Paper Daughters of Chinatown by Heather B. Moore ~ Just couldn't get into it.
- Loretta Little Looks Back by Andrea Davis Pinkney ~ Right book at the wrong time.
- Smash It! by Francina Simone ~ Insensitive. Racist remarks. Too bad for a bomb cover.
- How the One-Armed Sister Sweeps Her House by Cherie Jones ~ Already lost @ 11%.
- Black Bottom Saints by Alice Randall ~ No word should be mentioned 400x. Enough!
- The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett ~ Right Book Wrong Time. Coming back with wine.
- All This Time by Mikki Daughtry & Rachael Lippincott ~ I can't with the co-dependency issues.
- Conjure Women by Afia Atakora ~ Revisit when in the headspace for foxes, symbolism, voodoo and southern dialect.
- Don't Tell Mom About This by Eric Serrell ~ Black female main character. Mention of "Pookie." White male author. NOPE.
- Breathless by Jennifer Niven ~ I obvi can't relate to a sex-on-the-mind-complaining-about-mosquito-bites-whiny-white-teenage girl.
- Deacon King Kong by James McBride ~ Colorful cast of characters with their names/roles in community but I don't have the focus for such wordiness. Whole lot of describing.