If you felt that you just couldn’t make it to the end of Fifty Shades of Grey, rest assured, you are not alone.
It seems that E.L. James’ racy tome ranks among the top five books most unfinished. Perhaps this is due to how many people have bought the book. Still, one featured comment speaks volumes: “I’m a little bit of a snob.”
Titled the “Psychology of Abandonment,” the charticle (a chart-article hybrid) includes a range of sub-sections that shed insight on general reading behavior. Under the category “When do you abandon a book?” more than a third of members who responded still feel compelled to reach the end, even if years later. The second highest answer was “50-100 pages in,” with one comment suggesting, “I once heard the rule for abandoning a book is 100 minus your age.” By this calculation, younger people would be expected to have far more tolerance – which may or may not be the case.
Goodreads also asked what makes people ditch a book. Among the top results: “weak writing,” “slow, boring” and “ridiculous (or non-existent) plot.” A small percentage of readers cited feeling uncomfortable as their main reason.
Several bestsellers and classics have also been been shunned. Atlas Shrugged, Ulysses, Eat, Pray, Love and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo are among the works that have left the most people unimpressed.
Ultimately, the survey only further confirms that one person’s page-turner is another’s doorstop. Some people escape into bodice ripping romances, others will only find themselves engaged with historical fiction. So what?
Summertime obviously signals vacation season and this means more free time to read. So it could be wise to consider the books or authors with which you have the best track record. Because the feeling that comes from a stack of unread books might actually be worse than no books whatsoever.
What books have you abandoned recently?