I Pass

Is there a book that you have always wanted to read but never have? What has stopped you from reading it? 

Truthfully, I can think of only one book that I wanted to read and didn’t, and that was Cold Mountain. It should have been something I rushed to read. I was a history teacher, and it was certainly historical, but I just couldn’t do it. Why? Someone told me about the ending of the book. I won’t say what happened in case someone wants to read it themselves, but for me that did it. Life is hard at the best of times. To see someone struggle as I’ve been told the main character does and then to get such an ending…. No, it was too depressing for me.

There are other books that have been published that were critically acclaimed that I passed on. I can’t remember the names of any of them, but there are set reasons why I passed.

I don’t read anything where children are abused or kidnapped. I know it happens all too often in the real world, but I don’t want my emotions to be in a turmoil after reading such literature. I also don’t read books where animals are abused or tortured.

In the past the length of a book didn’t matter to me, but as I’ve gotten older I guess my attention span is shorter. I generally don’t read books with much more than three hundred pages.

Some genres just hold no interest for me. Erotic romance is a good example here. I’m a romance writer, but certainly not of erotica.

And sometimes, the book doesn’t sound interesting to me even if other people liked it. I used to think that if I started a book I should finish it, but I don’t do that now. I give the author a chapter to engage me, and if they haven’t I’m done with the book.

I’ve read some classics and liked them. Little Women and the companion books are all good, but there are some classics that are just too much for me. I got the idea once that I should read War and Peace. I made it through three pages before I quit. There were too many characters with Russian names introduced in the first pages.

So what about you? Any book you’ve passed on?

About Elaine Cantrell

Elaine Cantrell was born and raised in South Carolina. She has a Master’s Degree in Personnel Services from Clemson University and is a member of Alpha Delta Kappa, an international honorary sorority for women educators. She is also a member of Romance Writers of America. Her first novel A New Leaf was the 2003 winner of the Timeless Love Contest and was published in 2004 by Oak Tree Press. When she isn't writing you can find Elaine playing with her dog or maybe collecting more vintage Christmas ornaments
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6 Responses to I Pass

  1. Patricia Kiyono says:

    I have to agree with you on tragic endings. There’s already plenty of tragedy in the news, and my purpose in reading (except when I’m learning something new) is to escape into a happy place. Characters might live through hard times (that, of course, makes the story more interesting), but in the end I need a happy ending. And I had the same experience reading War and Peace.

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  2. I also agree about tragic endings, which is why I grab every Liane Moriarty book as soon as I can when they come out. As for animals, yes, I agree. When we were kids.”family” stories always involved some animal being harmed or dying. “The Yealing” totally traumatized me.
    When it comes to children, someone sent a book to me when we were introduced online by a friend. He worked hard on it, apparently, and was very proud of it. I tried to read it and he has some writing skill, but it is about kidnapped and abused children. I don’t care HOW well written or how the detective work is done and the ones there now are rescued, I have no stomach for it.(He will not be a guest here.)
    As for War and Peace, I enjoyed it, but I had seen the Russian serialized TV movie.I admit to scanning through the seemingly interminable battle scenes. When I met the man that I was goiong to marry, I found that he read quickly, (and without much interest), through the drama, but meticulously studied the battles!

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  3. Jeff Salter says:

    Love your take on “War and Peace” — two many characters with Russian names. I’ve never read it either, but had never paused to wonder why. Now that’s my reason also. LOL
    I’ve never read Little Women or any other Alcott novel. I have stacks of books that I WANT to read, so I can’t bring myself to bypass the in order to read a title I’m supposedly “supposed” to read.

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  4. Elaine Cantrell says:

    In school I read what I was supposed to, but now it’s for pleasure, and to me that’s very different. Like you, I read what I want to.

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