Posted in Weekly Posts

Musing Mondays (July 14)

musingmondays51

Musing Mondays is a meme from Should Be Reading

Musing Mondays asks you to muse about one of the following each week…

• Describe one of your reading habits.
• Tell us what book(s) you recently bought for yourself or someone else, and why you chose that/those book(s).
• What book are you currently desperate to get your hands on? Tell us about it!
• Tell us what you’re reading right now — what you think of it, so far; why you chose it; what you are (or, aren’t) enjoying it.
• Do you have a bookish rant? Something about books or reading (or the industry) that gets your ire up? Share it with us!
• Instead of the above questions, maybe you just want to ramble on about something else pertaining to books — let’s hear it, then!

I have decided to use Musing Mondays to have a bit of a ramble this week.

As regular readers to my blog will be aware I have just been on holiday. In preparation I made sure that I didn’t accept any books that would require reviewing for that time to free up my reading choices for books that I already owned or ones that I purchased particularly for the trip. Now I love having the latest reads and this year has produced a bumper crop of excellent reads, but the downside is that the opportunities to read other books that I want to have been severely reduced. I took a variety of books away with me and it was great to pick my next book on my mood rather than my schedule.

It soon became apparent when I was on my trip that I actually would choose to read a physical book rather than an eBook although my choices were evenly split between the two mediums, I only bought one physical book home unread but I wouldn’t have had the choice available without my kindle so it is a double-edged sword. Carrying enough books to make sure I could choose from a wide variety of books would have used a fair bit of my baggage allowance.

As time has gone on I have thought more deeply about why a book works, or doesn’t, for me. While away I had one DNF which was one that I had really looked forward to reading, What She Left Behind by Ellen Marie Wiseman. This should have been a sure fire winner for me as its synopsis indicated that insanity led to Izzy’s mother killing her father whilst in the past Clara was locked in an asylum in 1929 for falling in love with the wrong man. Unfortunately although this time I wasn’t turned off by incorrect historical detail (something that is most likely to make me stop reading) this book’s present day story was far too flimsy. Izzy somehow instantly knows her current foster mother is good, despite by the age of 17 having lived in a variety of different homes.  She starts a new high school, meets a boy and knows that he won’t be her boyfriend. What?? What is all this just knowing! When the story got bogged down in who could be most horrible class-mate at school, and their motivations for behaving that way, I’m afraid I gave up.

Obviously this isn’t a full review as I didn’t finish the book. I didn’t get as far as finding out Clara’s story but I knew that I wouldn’t be able to engage after being disillusioned by the first 20% that I did read. The idea for this book is fantastic but I prefer it when the characters have a little more depth which is apparent through their actions not just their thoughts.

Please share your Monday Musings in the comments box below.

Author:

A book lover who clearly has issues as obsessed with crime despite leading a respectable life

26 thoughts on “Musing Mondays (July 14)

  1. Cleo – I know exactly what you mean about stories where characters just happen to know things. That’s enough to make me stop reading, too, and it is a disappointment, isn’t it? Well, even though I like historical novels, I may give that one a miss.

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  2. I am with you on this one. I always try give a book a chance but if, after the first chapter or so, it doesn’t grab my interest I do put it down and pick up another.

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  3. You mentioned you were turned off by an inaccurate historical detail – I totally understand this. I was completely turned off by The Vacationers (for other reasons as well) because of 2 inaccurate sports details (the number of laps of a pool that equal a mile – the author was so far off it was laughable, and the personality of her “fictional” Rafa Nadal). The book was so-so for me, but those details pushed me into the negative column! I’m glad you got to read some books by choice on vacation – that’s what vacation is for!

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    1. I had a wonderful time reading a whole stack of books and you have my sympathies with inaccuracies. I can usually stomach a weak plot but to have a book riddled with factual errors makes me want to spit.

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  4. I agree that inaccurate details can make or break our enjoyment. I also understand your ambivalence over print vs e-book. I am enjoying checking out library books and having print in my hand once more, but due to our moving every few years and not having much space, I prefer my e-reader for portability (and impulse buys). I have cut back severely on review books so I can choose those I am interested in, but was missing out on.

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    1. I do love my kindle, even though I’m sure I wouldn’t have half as many unread books without it, but I did enjoy holding a physical book for a change I think mainly because I read more eBooks normally. It quite surprised me. The other lesson I learned was that I need to get a better balance between review books and those on my own shelf.

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  5. I know we joke back and forth about the TBR, but I do agree with the difficulty of fitting ‘personal choice’ books in amongst new releases for review. I’m really trying to cut back on review books – only requesting them if I would actually be willing to buy the book. It still means I’m always behind, but at least it means I’m finally getting to the stage where most of the books I’m reading should be ones I enjoy…

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  6. “What is all this just knowing?” That statement made me laugh–but I do know what you mean. To me, that kind of think means that the author is taking the easy way out, and that can be a deal-breaker for me in terms of finishing or not finishing a book.
    Glad you had time to do so much reading on your holiday–it sounds like a successful break!

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    1. Thank you, I had a wonderful, and much needed break. I was particularly annoyed about this book because the premise was great but in my mind spoiled by lazy writing. I think the author was trying to give Izzy too many issues and therefore had ended up rushing the plot along…

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    1. Thank you, it sounds like you had some good reading time too. Fortunately most of the other books I chose to take were good although it is frustrating when a book you think you’re going to love lets you down.

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  7. Now i was holding my breath that FictionFan would have something to say about Sarah of Sarah’sBookshelves comment about a fictional ‘Rafa nadal’ but alas, she didn’t spot it, or perhaps tiptoed carefully away to investigate the Fictional Rafa.

    Anyway (abandoning books you aren’t enjoying) i rather foolishly signed up for a reading challenge, which gets audited by the reviews I post on Amazon This means i have to review everything I’m reading, and I can’t seem to let myself write a critical review of something i haven’t finished. So………I have read, cover to cover, far more 3, 2,or even 1 star books than usual, since my tendency otherwise is to abandon the not enjoyed one FAST and not review it BECAUSE I haven’t finished it.

    Grrr. I know, I know, the sensible thing is to not continue with the challenge, but I sort of can’t. Am determined to complete!

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    1. I thought that would have been pounced on too but you’re right she’s probably reading it already.
      It has taken me years to be comfortable with not finishing books. Even now I will keep going unless it is really awful so I couldn’t possibly sign up to that challenge as I’d undo all the progress I’ve made. I’m like you once I sign up for something I have to continue… Good luck.

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      1. I shan’t be doing any more reading challenges like that though. Do feel free to remind me I said that on January 1st 2015! Of course I could have been sensible and gone for the 52 books challenge rather than the 104 books one, as that would have meant I could have easily abandoned and not reviewed the turkeys. Except…my nature is to go for the tough challenge AND to try to exceed it! sometimes you do something which really confronts you with your own foolishness in buckets!

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  8. PS I have just spotted your ‘posts i like’ includes that rather unpleasant picture of a Yellow Mite from my site. Bleurghh (I spared everyone’s sensitivities and chose the magnified mite over a cluster of magnified maggots, you’ll be pleased to know!

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  9. I usually get annoyed by historical inaccuracies because I feel like the author’s being lazy (I mean you can usually look that stuff up!)

    Travelling, I actually love having my eReader because I can bring lots of books without it weighing me down haha. Though I usually still love physical books more when I’m at the beach, haha.

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    1. I do like having the choice and after nearly four years can’t imagine my life without an eReader and maybe because it is because I read so much on it that reading the physical books was such a contrast.

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  10. Recently I’m using my ereader more but now and then I crave to read a hard copy book – funnily I seem to read faster on my ereader not sure why that is – maybe cos I am not looking at page numbers or visually how far through the book I am (I have the % / location off) I used to always finish books but now not so much. If i’m not into it in the first 50 pages I put it aside with no regrets. Here’s my MM: http://daystarz.wordpress.com/2014/07/14/musing-mondays-19/

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  11. It’s still not easy for me to give up on a book but I’m trying! Life is too short to stumble through a bad book, especially when there are so many good ones out there! Glad you had fun on your vacation! I’m planning what books to read for mine!

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