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    Default On which page can you start judging a book?

    I have just seen a video on youtube in which a girl claims that Stephen King's books are horrible, she couldn't even force herself to read the 3rd or 4th page of his books sooo she always put them down because (drums please) they were so horribly boring.

    Well, she is absolutely free to have and tell her opinion about any writer, it's a free world. But how can you form any kind of opinion of a book when you are on page 3? I mean... really... we really don't know anything about that book at that time or at least in my humble opinion.

    But what I am really interested in is your opinion. What do you think? How much time and how many pages do you usually give a book before you give up on it?

    Roland would have understood.

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    As a general rule I give a book 50 pages before I'll give up on it.
    The Awesomest fled across the desert and The Awesomer followed.

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    I wish that I could write fiction, but that seems almost an impossibility. -howard phillips lovecraft (1915)



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    Some books I knew from the very moment I read the first sentence, that I would like them, but a lot of it has to do with mood, I think. Others I trudged forward and was very rewarded that I stuck with them!

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    I was hooked on THE STAND from the very first sentence.
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    Of course we feel when a book really pulls us from the very beginning but when do you give up?

    Brice - I think you are really fair to books.

    Roland would have understood.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Letti View Post
    I have just seen a video on youtube in which a girl claims that Stephen King's books are horrible, she couldn't even force herself to read the 3rd or 4th page of his books sooo she always put them down because (drums please) they were so horribly boring.

    Well, she is absolutely free to have and tell her opinion about any writer, it's a free world. But how can you form any kind of opinion of a book when you are on page 3? I mean... really... we really don't know anything about that book at that time or at least in my humble opinion.

    But what I am really interested in is your opinion. What do you think? How much time and how many pages do you usually give a book before you give up on it?
    It didn't take me more than five pages to know I would not like Carrie, Roadwork and Rage. I gave Gerald's Game solid 50 pages before I gave up. I knew Black Hills by Dan Simmons would suck the life out of me very early on. I also wouldn't have finished Hyperion if it weren't an audio book. It was rewarding in the end but the initial chapter or two were brutal. My brother gave up on Insomnia after 15-20 pages. It's often not what the story is about but how it's written. The Youtube girl could just be exaggerating but she also might be onto something. Why waste your life on books in hopes of a payoff once it's finished when you could read the books that grab from the start? I know I started Under The Dome and after about 20 pages I put it back on the shelf. I'll get to it eventually but I'd rather read some Lebbon who I know will have my undivided attention within the first few pages.

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    I usually give a book around three or four chapters to grab my attention. In most cases I can tell after the first chapter if I'm going to like it but I usually always trudge on in hopes that it will get better.

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    Maybe I am in the minority but I always finish every book I start even if I don't like it. I guess I am just compulsive that way. I have been rewarded more than once with a pretty good outcome to a pretty horrible beginning.

    "Head Clear. Mouth shut. See Much. Say little." Roland Deschain


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    Well I'm pretty notorious for putting a book down if it doesn't grab me from the get go. That could even be 5 pages in. But that also doesn't mean I won't go back to it at some point. It all depends on my mood at the moment. And sometimes I'll cycle through a bunch of books until I find one that grabs me, and I'll go with that one and read it. My only exception would probably be King. I have put down some of his books, but there are others that even though I'm not enjoying them I'll read them just because he wrote it, like Lisey's Story or Insomnia.
    Only the gentle are ever really strong.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brice View Post
    As a general rule I give a book 50 pages before I'll give up on it.
    Yeah, this is about as much leeway as I give a potential borefest as well. The only exception was Crime & Punishment - I only got to about page 30 before I realized that there was absolutely no way in hell I was going to be able to finish it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by blavigne View Post
    Maybe I am in the minority but I always finish every book I start even if I don't like it. I guess I am just compulsive that way.
    That's generally how I am, too. I always finish a book no matter how much I dislike it or find it boring (i.e. Wizard and Glass). By the first 50 or 100 pages, I can usually gauge how much I'm going to like/dislike it but feel obligated to finish it.

    There is one exception, however...

    Spoiler:
    Pride & Prejudice


    Quote Originally Posted by Heather19 View Post
    Well I'm pretty notorious for putting a book down if it doesn't grab me from the get go. That could even be 5 pages in.
    Heather!
    A NEW GAME BEGINS

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    Quote Originally Posted by blavigne View Post
    Maybe I am in the minority but I always finish every book I start even if I don't like it. I guess I am just compulsive that way. I have been rewarded more than once with a pretty good outcome to a pretty horrible beginning.
    I'm much the same way. If I start a book, I'll finish it. There have been a few exceptions over the years, but those are exceptions.

    John

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    Quote Originally Posted by feverishparade View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Brice View Post
    As a general rule I give a book 50 pages before I'll give up on it.
    Yeah, this is about as much leeway as I give a potential borefest as well. The only exception was Crime & Punishment - I only got to about page 30 before I realized that there was absolutely no way in hell I was going to be able to finish it.
    I read that for the first time in the fifth or sixth grade.


    Letti: It is because I don't want to miss a good story. For me at least everything in a book is forgiveable if the story is good. Now a Jane Austen book...those are exceptions. This is the one case where I DO judge a book by it's cover. If I see her name I just walk away. There is not one smile in a Jane Austin book for me. If I ever own a book store her books will not be able to be found there.


    Ricky: Ha! I didn't even read your spoiler until after I posted this.
    The Awesomest fled across the desert and The Awesomer followed.

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    I wish that I could write fiction, but that seems almost an impossibility. -howard phillips lovecraft (1915)



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    Quote Originally Posted by jhanic View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by blavigne View Post
    Maybe I am in the minority but I always finish every book I start even if I don't like it. I guess I am just compulsive that way. I have been rewarded more than once with a pretty good outcome to a pretty horrible beginning.
    I'm much the same way. If I start a book, I'll finish it. There have been a few exceptions over the years, but those are exceptions.

    John
    And me.
    Take McCammon's The Five. I hated the first fifty pages or so, but there's no way I could not finish it. And I ended up really liking this book. Not the best McCammon ever -that would still be Boy's Life to me- but still a great read!

    sk

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brice View Post
    Ricky: Ha! I didn't even read your spoiler until after I posted this.


    You have good taste in distaste.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brice View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by feverishparade View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Brice View Post
    As a general rule I give a book 50 pages before I'll give up on it.
    Yeah, this is about as much leeway as I give a potential borefest as well. The only exception was Crime & Punishment - I only got to about page 30 before I realized that there was absolutely no way in hell I was going to be able to finish it.
    I read that for the first time in the fifth or sixth grade.
    I'm sorry.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jhanic View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by blavigne View Post
    Maybe I am in the minority but I always finish every book I start even if I don't like it. I guess I am just compulsive that way. I have been rewarded more than once with a pretty good outcome to a pretty horrible beginning.
    I'm much the same way. If I start a book, I'll finish it. There have been a few exceptions over the years, but those are exceptions.

    John
    The Wind in the Willows and War and Peace are the only books I have ever started and not finished. It's a compulsion to finish any book I pick up. I think it's the masochistic in me.
    People love frozen yogurt. I don't know what to tell you.

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    I'll give a book a few chapters if I'm not instantly grabbed by it. There have been a rare few where the writing is so bad I've been a few pages in and thought, if I carry on I think my eyes will start bleeding! And so I stop. I can't force myself to finish a book if I don't enjoy it, enjoyment from reading is one of my greatest pleasures in life and to read a book that's an utter chore just goes against the grain for me.

    I struggled with my first Tim Powers book, but he's one of those that I'm so glad I persevered with because he is a genius. Also McCarthy's All The Pretty Horses was very slow going, but I really got into the rhythmn of it halfway through. I think there's a difference between flat out not getting into a story as opposed to finding it hardwork but being compelled never the less because of good writing or a great character.

    The last ASOIAF book I nearly put down loads of times because it dragged soooo much! In the end I skipped to chapters of characters I liked more than once.

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    I used to give books until 30 pages to pull me in. 2 yrs ago at least

    Now, if I purchase a book, we are going together to the end. This new outlook has caused me to greatly reconsider and change in some cases my previous options on a book the turned out to be more than my brief early journey could have ever given it credit for.

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    by its cover

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    Quote Originally Posted by sgc1999 View Post
    by its cover


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