Lola’s Rambings is a feature on Lola’s Review where I talk about me. Usually these posts are everything that doesn’t fall under any standard header, like blog tours, book blitzes, cover reveals or reviews. Lola’s Ramblings posts are are personal discussions of a certain topic. Sometimes about book related topics and sometimes about non-book related topics. This feature was previously known as About Me. The banner for this feature is designed by Michelle from Limabean Design.
Last week I talked about how I rate books, although I didn’t go into much detail about the DNF rating as that is today’s topic. I always found DNF’ing an interesting topic, while I love readign sometimes I come across a book that doesn’t work for me. I used to be one of those readers who read the whole book no matter what happened or if I enjoyed it or not. Since I started blogging my stance on DNF’ing changed, I realized that some books just aren’t for me and when I rather do something else than read a book because I am not enjoying the book I read I know it’s time to consider DNF’ing. In todays post I wanted to addres why I DNF books as I noticed some general trends or problems I have with books I DNF and when I DNF. Want to know which books I DNF’ed? Check out my DNF shelf on Goodreads.
Why do I DNF a book?
- Story, plot or pace doesn’t work for me. Sometimes the plot of a book just doesn’t works for me or it fails to grab or keep my attention. This can also be due to too slow pace or sometimes even a too fast pace, that feels rushed and leaves me wondering what’s happening.
- No connection with the book or story. In some cases I just can’t seem to care about the book or story or what’s going on. This often goes hand in hand with the next point. It’s hard to enjoy a book when you don’t really care what’s happening. One of those books were I didn’t care about what was happening was Exodus by Julie Bertagna.
- Not connecting with the characters. A good plot or world building can make up for not caring about the characters, but it still makes enjoying a book very difficult when I don’t care about the characters. I don’t have to love the characters, but I prefer if I do care about the characters in some way or at least interested in seeing what’s going to happen to them. Not being interested in the characters can lead to me DNF’ing the book.
- Writing style doesn’t work for me. This one is really hard to explain what exactly doesn’t work for me in a writing style, but some books are written in such a way that the writing style annoys me so much I can’t enjoy the book. Again I don’t need to love the writing style, but if I can’t stand the writing style it probably will be a DNF for me. I have had a few books where it takes me while to get used to the writign style and that’s okay, but some writing styles just don’t work for me. An author’s writing style can really make or break a book for me. A good writing style makes a book that isn’t as good still fun to read, while a bad writing style make sa book that could be okay horrible. I have DNF’d books merely because I didn’t like the writing style. An example of this is Shatter Me, the writing style didn’t work for me and I didn’t feel invested in the story or characters.
- Expectations. Expectations can really influence how much I enjoy a book. These can be general expectations, like I loved other books by this author so I wil probably love this one as well. Or like the case was with Throne of Glass, I expected a book about a kickass assassin with lots of action and that wans’t what I found in this book. It’s probably one of the reasons this book didn’t work for me as I expected a different type of book, more like Jennifer Estep her Elemental Assassin series. In general I think expectations can really make or break a book, sometimes this means a book get’s a lwo rating and in extreme cases this means I DNF a book because I expected it to be different.
- World building or plot that doesn’t make sense. Things that don’t make sense can really rub me wrong and when combined with one of the other points the book is on it’s way to becoming a DNF. If there are only a few things that don’t make sense I can deal with it, but if there a plot holes everywhere I probably won’t continue a book.
Usually one of these reasons isn’t reason enough to DNF, but if other parts aren’t good enough to compensate for the part I don’t like it will most likely be a DNF. And in most cases a combination of these points leads me to DNF a book. Although in extreme cases each of these points alone can lead to a DNF if there isn’t anything else to compensate for it. If I can’t stand the characters, but the plot and world building are decent I probably continue, but if the I can’t stad the characters and the plot and world buildign aren’t really well done either I probably DNF. So often it’s a cobmination of factors or one point that I really dislike and not enough other things to keep the book enjoyable or fun.
When do I DNF?
When it comes to when I DNF I actually don’t have a clear cut rule. I’ve DNF’d a book after reading the first few pages, but usually I try to read some chapters. I even have quite some DNF books were I got at least 20 or 25% in. I know some books have a slow start and then get better, I even remember I book I considered DNF’ing which ended up being a 5 star read. So while I don’t have a rule I do try to give a book a chance, unless it’s the writing style that doens’t work for me, then I mgith DNF as early as the first few pages, but those cases are rare. I don’t often DNF book usually I am quite good at knowing whether I will like a book or not. At the moment my DNF shelf contains 20 books.
Do I review a DNF?
I do review books I DNF, but usually those are shorter. I list why the book didn’t work for me and usually why I thought it would work for or why I picked it up on the first place. I might address any of the normal points I usually mention in my reviews as well, like story, characters, romance and world building, but only if I feel like I have to say something about it. Most likely my DNF reviews include what didn’t work for me and anything else I feel like saying and I keep it at that. I only started reviewing books I DNF’d around the same time I started reviewing every book I read, so there are a few books on my DNF’s I didn’t review. I usually don’t post my review of DNF books on my blog, but that might change.