29 July 2013

Giving books a second chance



Sometimes you read a book and you don't like it, maybe because of the writing style, the characters, the world building or something else. But one thing you know and that is that the book was not perfect for you. So you put the book aside and never go back to it, because why read a book a second time that you didn't enjoy? 

But then there are situations in which reading a book you struggled with the first time makes sense. The first situation is when you read a book while being in a weird mood in which choosing the perfect book to fit the mood you are in is nearly impossible. When I'm in one of those crazy moods I listen carefully to my inner reading voice, as soon as I realize that I don't enjoy a book because it doesn't fit to my mood, I stop reading it, put it back on my TBR shelve and come back to it as soon as I'm out of the weird reading mode. 

The second situation is even more complex. Sometimes you read a book and it doesn't work for you because of your own expectations. Maybe it's a very hyped book, you read a lot of hype posts on it and expect fantastic things from the book. Sometimes the expectations can be so high that the book doesn't get a fair chance. This definitely has happened to my in the past and because of it I stopped reading hype posts. As soon as I realize that hype is going on I'm ignoring all posts on the book and that has helped me a lot with keeping my expectations at a good level. 

And sometimes it's not even hype that has influenced your expectations in a way that makes it hard for a book. When I for example read "Lola and the boy next door" by Stephanie Perkins the first time, I knew on the one hand that the book would not be like "Anna and the French kiss", that Lola and Crickte would not be a second Anna and Etienne. I really knew this, still I was hoping in some weird corner of my brain that the stories and characters in the books would be similar. Of course both did not come true and that made me disappointed and made it hard for me to enjoy Lola's book. But then something brilliant and wondrous happend, a few months after redaing Lola the first time I gave the book a second chance. And this second time the weird corner in my brain was not expecting a second Anna and that made it possible for the greatness of the book, characters and relationships in Lola to intrude my brain and heart. The second time I read the book I fell in love with pretty much everything in the story and that's why I love giving books second chances, sometimes it's like reading a completely different book compared to your first reading experience. 

Do you give books a second chance? Have you ever experienced something similar to what happened to me when I read "Lola and the boy next door" the second time?

10 comments:

  1. A nice post! I agree with you! Sometimes I read a book and it's like "hm, a good book, but I don't need to read the book a secend time" and sometimes I think: "yeah, a good book, I think I would love to read the book once again" Sadly, I havn't the time to reread. Too much books waiting for my from my TBA ;) But I'm a person who can't part from my book. And sometimes I start a book and I note that the genre isn't good for my mood now, than I took them back and waiting for the right mood.
    Years ago there was a another situation for me too! I start with "Magic Bites" by Ilona Andrews and a few pages I was thinking: "No, I don't like the book!" At the time I wasn't a fan of urban-fantasie, I loved romantic-fantasie and as I realized the story was more dark and sarcastic (how I say I only read a few pages) I put the book way, because it wasn't what I expect and I was disappointed. Luckily I kept the book, because then I discovered Lilith Saintcorw for me now I love urban-fantasie (sometimes even more than romantic-fantasie :D)! Never expect this development, but sometimes our reading-behaiver chance and then I think it's meaningful to give a book a secand chance :)

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    1. My taste in books and genres in general has also changed a bit in the last years. Certain genres no longer belong to my favourites and I crave now books from others. It's fascinating to see how taste can change over some time.

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  2. Great post. I do know exactly the feeling when you know that you are not in the mood for a book and need to try again later. And yes sometimes I enjoy a book better the second time through. I sometimes see things differently and enjoy the story more.

    Love this post!

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    1. Exactly, sometimes a different mood can change everything.

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  3. Hmm interesting post Julchen. If I did not like a book, I won't read it again. And yes I am very often disappointed in books that lots of other bloggers loved skyhigh, even bloggers with a similar taste in books. Not sure if it is the hype, but also I often don't understand why people are going ga-ga over a hero who becomes their book boyfriend. Like they have read a totally different book than I did.

    I do give books a second chance when I don't finish it at first, because of my mood, or because a long awaited book arrives.

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    1. I hate when I don't like a book that should have been perfect for me and when I can't see the greatness in it other people with similar taste in books have discovered. It drives me crazy because I always want to know what exactly went wrong.

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  4. To be honest, I think that I'm not the best reviewer out there as I usually enjoy every book that I read. I very rarely come across a book that I just couldn't enjoy. I guess I'm lucky that way.

    When it does happen though I'm very unlikely to give the same book a second chance. I WILL read other books by the same author just to make sure it wasn't me. If it ends up that it was me though, I'd probably give the book another go.

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    1. I like to do the same and always try to pick up another book by the author.

      I think it's great that you enjoy pretty much all the books you read. I know that some book bloggers view that in a critical and negative way, but I think it's fantastic.

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  5. Great post! I read a chapter of a book called 'Dear Wife, I Just Wanted To Tell You' I was in a rotten mood that day and didn't find it interesting. After reading this post, it has inspired me to try reading it again. Thank you for sharing :) http://storytellershannon.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. Hope that you will enjoy the book the second time you read it.
      Happy Reading!

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