…if I DNf’d books.
Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. This week’s theme is:
December 10: Freebie
For this week, I thought I’d take a look at books I’ve considered DNFing in the past, but haven’t because I generally don’t DNF books.
For some reason, I just can’t bring myself to DNF. I always end up thinking “what if this suddenly gets really good and I miss the best parts?” Plus I want the book to count towards my Goodreads goal. So I persevere.
Sometimes that perseverance doesn’t pay off. But sometimes, it does.
Once & Future
Sadly, I thought about DNFing this multiple times while reading. I found the writing style really lacking and the plot was poorly executed.
But I persevered.
And unfortunately, it was not worth it.
The Girl King
The premise for this book had so much promise, but it failed to live up to the hype for me. The plot seemed to jump from one thing to another without fluidity or logical connections, and there was one abusive scene that I just flat out didn’t like.
So I probably would have DNF’d if I hadn’t felt the need to keep going.
The Devouring Gray
You might be surprised to see this one on my list, but there was a moment when I thought about DNFing. I was reading the audiobook and not loving the narrator. But I switched to the paperback and everything changed in the second half.
I’m so glad I didn’t DNF this one because I ended up really enjoying it.
I pressed pause on this book earlier this year, but came back to it last month. And I honestly don’t know why I put it down.
It was an enjoyable historical fantasy with some great action scenes and I had fun reading it.
The Beast’s Heart
We’re about to get a little bit Slytherin up in here (I’m a Ravenclaw), but I low-key hated this book.
The author was trying too hard to make the prose overly floral, and it ended up coming across as too over the top. The Beast was so entitled and his possessiveness of Isabeau was toxic.
Plus, nothing actually happened for about 70% of the book??? So yes, I should have DNF’d this one and I wish I had.
Continuing with the Slytherin vibes, I was quite hyped for this one, but when I started reading I quickly realised that it was…not good. The writing felt like it hadn’t been edited at all (there were a lot of grammatical errors) and the plot didn’t make sense for most of the book.
I should have cut my losses and teleported out.
I thought this book was going to be a mesmerising sapphic tale, but it was so strange and uncomfortable that I didn’t enjoy it. At all.
I had a Netgalley copy, so I kept reading to make sure I could give a full, detailed review. And I wish I hadn’t to be honest. There were some awful, abusive scenes and underhand racist comments and it was just a big old NOPE from me.
Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe
Unpopular opinion perhaps, but there were times reading this when I just got a bit bored.
I’m glad I finished it, but I didn’t really love it and I think I only gave it 2.5 or 3 stars?
Everless just felt a little too much of a tried and tested YA novel. It didn’t really do anything new and wasn’t exceptionally written
Strange the Dreamer
OK, here me out on this one.
The world-building and character introductions were quite slow moving up to page 50 of Strange. And in the first few chapters, there was perhaps one second when I considered DNFing this book.
But, of course, I didn’t. And it went on to become one of my all time favourite fantasies. Thanks for coming to my Ted Talk.
Which books have you considered DNFing? Did you persevere or did you cut your losses?
17 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday // Books I would have DNF’d…”
Great list! I’m sorry to hear you didn’t enjoy Once & Future and I’m glad you enjoyed Courting Darkness – I want to get to that one once I’ve read Mortal Heart. I really enjoyed Strange the Dreamer, too, but it’s definitely a novel that rewards patience – it takes a while to get going!
When you said, “I should have cut my losses and teleported out” I diedddd. Ahaha.
I hate Everless with the burning flames of a thousand suns. I think I did DNF about half way but it was sooo bad.
Hahahaha glad I could make you laugh! 😀 If only teleporting were a day-to-day activity! Hahahah I’m glad I’m not the only one who wasn’t enamoured with Everless 😛
Agreed about Zenith. I was so excited for that book, and it just…flopped. I wish I’d just cut my losses versus dragging myself through the ending of it.
Yes, I feel the same! It’s one of the few books that I really wish I’d just dropped when it started to go downhill 😦
Ugh, I know. I felt like the ending picked up, but after the messy first 3/4 I should’ve just stopped. I kick myself for purchasing a signed/personalized copy and going out to buy the second one 😂🙈
I DNF’d a single book this year, but it should have been more. I really need to start bouncing when books make me angry because it’s all downhill from there. It mostly happens in review copies, and at that point I feel like I went to the effort of requesting it so I owe it a full review? I just have a hard time putting things down once I’ve started them. The drive to finish is too powerful.
I have the exact same stance on DNFing. I rarely DNF, mainly because I’m stubborn and determined to see it to the end, but also have that hope that it will get better. I had a similar reaction to Strange the Dreamer. It was so slow going to start, but knew it would pay off eventually.
Omg a kindred soul ❤ Yes, I'm exactly the same – determined to finish it and make it count towards my GR goal. Strange was such a wonderful book, but those first 50 pages were pretty leisurely!
This is a great post. I rarely dnf a book, but there have been books that I probably should have. I generally don’t hate any books, but I feel myself struggling to pick certain ones up at times.
Aww thank you! Yeah, I’m exactly the same; I just find it so hard to give up on a book!
Usually, it takes me a while before I decide that I have enough and DNF too .. A lot of times our guts it right, hey sometimes the reason is just that it’s not the right moment for us to read that book XD We may end up loving it if we decide to pick it up later.. or not.
For some reason, the ONLY book I recall DNFing (which, I did a few) was the night circus. Although I know a lot of people loved it.. the storyline just passed WAY ABOVE my head and I was so darn lost between the povs I had no idea where I was even at XD
I think I wish I would have DNF’ed Stalking Jack the Ripper, the Divergent books, and a couple of serious misses on NetGalley, alas, I didn’t, but on the plus side, they’ve all helped me realize elements I just do not like in books lol
Ah that’s good that not DNFing them helped you discover something about your reading tastes! I sometimes find that by not DNFing a book I didn’t enjoy, it gives be a baseline to compare other similar books and see if they’re better!
I do DNF books, but I just don’t tend to look at it in those terms (probably because I did a lot of reading and developed habits before I ever joined the book community). My version of DNF-ing tends to be putting a book down with a bookmark in it, moving to something I am more interested in and then ultimately finishing at some point in 2/3 years time when I finally consider myself more interested. I think as someone who tends to buy books, I also want to actually finish a book because of the money spent.
Ah that’s really interesting! I did that quite a bit last year, and I tried to pick back up a few of the books that I’d left for a while before the end of 2019. I didn’t count that as DNFing, more like putting them on hold, so it’s interesting to hear you say the same thing! 🙂