It’s Not Me, It’s You: 2018 DNFs

Posted December 12, 2018 by Cristina (Girl in the Pages) in Features / 2 Comments

Back during my first year of blogging, I decided to do a round up of the books that I ended up not finishing, and while I don’t like to dwell on the negative, it’s interesting to have a record of the books that didn’t work out, especially to see if I ever get around to finishing them later on. Like many bloggers, I do feel guilty when I neglect to finish a book, especially when it’s one I’ve received for review or purchased for my personal collection. At the same time, my life is crazy busy and I just don’t have the time and resources to devote to finishing a book out of nothing more than a sense of obligation.

In 2017 I didn’t have too many DNFs, and in 2018 that trend mostly continued. I have a few books that I admittedly started and have since put “on hold” but that I am ~hoping~ to return to someday. Therefore I’ve featured books that I REALLY don’t see myself returning to. I’ll also note that my criteria for what constitutes as a DNF is a book that I’ve read at least a few chapters from- reading 3 pages and calling and deciding it doesn’t catch my interest doesn’t count as a DNF for me personally. I also don’t count DNF books toward my total books read for the year- if I don’t 100% finish a book it just personally feels like cheating to me to count it toward my Goodreads total.

If There’s No Tomorrow by Jennifer L. Armentrout

First off, I used to LOVE JLA books but now I feel like I can barely keep them straight? I had borrowed the ebook of this one to read on my annual Hawaii trip this year and saved it for the plane ride home. Despite having a good 5+ hours to spend on this one, I found I really couldn’t get in to it and I think DNF’d at around 10%. I cannot even tell you what it was about (it was all the way back in January and I was pretty out of it thanks to my having to take Dramamine whenever I fly) but I remember it just seemed like “younger” YA to me.

Seventh Born by Monica Sanz

This one was really hard for me to DNF because I LOVE witches! I liked the cover, I was super intrigued by the premise, I liked the feisty protagonist, and I made it about 25% through before I realized I was just getting really bored by it. I felt as though I was rather thrown into the story and there wasn’t enough world building to keep me enticed, so my imagination ended up defaulting to a generic magic boarding school setting and therefore I had a hard time paying attention. I could see myself potentially trying to return to this one (I was really intrigued by this notion of being a “seventh born” witch with all of the associated powers and stigmas) but for now I had to put it aside!

Compulsion by Martina Boone

I was recommended this one by a reader who encouraged me to read it based on how much I loved The Splendor Falls for its Gothic Southern setting. While this book definitely has the deep South element complete with paranormal happenings and family fueds, it felt VERY 2014, if you know what I mean? Like from that last era where you have girl with tragic backstory, paranormal elements, beautiful boy who’s too sassy for his own good, etc. – it all felt too formulaic, like a million other YA novels I read 5ish years ago. However I will admit that I read this one during a time when I was going through a bit of a slump so it’s totally possible it was just a combination of it not being the right time for me to experience the story. I would be open to potentially trying this one again!

Wildcard by Marie Lu

I tried guys, I really did. I started listening to this one on Scribd, because even though Warcross was basically just a lol-fest for me I wanted to see what would happen (especially since I’ll admit I was sort of pro-Hideo at the end of Warcross). However I barely got 20 minutes into the audio of this one and I realized that 1) My mind was wandering WAY too easily, 2) I barely remembered who any of the secondary characters were and 3) I could not take another book that talked about Emika and her special snowflake rainbow hair. I’ll just have to admit that this series is not for me!

What were your DNF books this year? Would you consider going back to any of them? Are any of the above books ones that you’ve finished or recommend I give another shot? Let me know in the comments!


2 responses to “It’s Not Me, It’s You: 2018 DNFs

  1. DNFs are hard but I am now all for fully embracing and I’ve stopped putting too many books on the ‘I might return to it one day’ list because I never do. Sure, there are a couple of books which totally worked second time around but there are many books which I simply know I will never try again with. I’ve gone off JLA books lately, I think some of them are too similar to others she’s written so they blur together and don’t stand out. I’m hoping taking a break from reading them and returning when one really calls to me is the best plan.

    Becky @ A Fool's Ingenuity recently posted: The Earl I Ruined // It Proved Second Time Really Is The Charm
    • I am totally guilty of that too- I have an “on hold” shelf on goodreads but I rarely (if ever) actually return to a book I put on hold. It’s hard to DNF and I used to almost never do it but my time feels so limited for reading now as an adult that I can’t waste time on books I’m not into or I inevitably end up in a slump! I’m sorry to hear about your JLA experience, I have to go back and reread her Lux series before I can read THE DARKEST STAR which I just recently bought, I hope I still enjoy her books!

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