The decision to not finish a book is not an easy one for us, and we certainly don’t mean any disrespect to the authors. There can be many reasons, we’re not into reading that type of book right now, it’s not a category that we like, we just can’t understand where the book is heading, we don’t like that writing style … and so on. As much as we want to enjoy our reads, it doesn’t always happen – and these are the books we had to put to the side so far this year.
Riot Baby, Tochi Onyebuchi
The first book that “ALMOST” got the axe this year was the first book I read – Riot Baby, Tochi Onyebuchi. I wanted to like this book because the writing and the imagery are exceptional. But the story lacked cohesiveness and proper execution to give us something meaty that we could sink into. If this book was longer I probably would not have finished it. The entire book felt like a jumble of different ideas smashed together to fight it out to see which one idea came out on top and the author would run with it … except in the end we got a stay tuned! Ugh!!!
Goliath, Tochi Onyebuchi
And then … the first book that actually got the axe was another one by Onyebuchi – Goliath. I just couldn’t anymore and called it quits at page 76. I didn’t know what was going on as there didn’t seem to be a clear plot. Nothing was making sense and I didn’t want to devote any more time to this as it was taking immense effort just to pick it up and read a few pages.
Piranesi, Susana Clarke
I know Kim loved Piranesi, but I had to give it the axe at 25%. Another book where I just didn’t see where it was going and couldn’t go along with the stream of consciousness stye anymore.
My Heart is a Chainsaw, Stephen Graham Jones
And finally – of course there has to be a book that has won many awards but that I just couldn’t get into. This year, it’s My Heart if a Chainsaw. After reading through 1/3rd of the book – I called it. I just couldn’t bring myself to pick this book up again. Another “stream of consciousness” style that wasn’t for me, relating everything to a horror movie – and then telling us about said horror movie … I just can’t … And I got all the references because I love horror – but I just didn’t care about the main character – or any of the people in the novel – I didn’t care what was happening to the town … the only thing I cared about was trying to get through this book … but life’s too short and my reading list is too long for me to continue.
Harrow the Ninth, Tamsyn Muir (Locked Tomb #2)
It really pained me to set this one aside. I was one of my most anticipated books of 2022 as the sequel to Gideon the Ninth, which I really loved. I couldn’t wait to get back into this world! In Gideon, I adored Gideon the character but was just ‘meh’ about Harrow. Knowing that, I should have seen this coming. I found Harrow to be boring. No matter how hard I tried, I just didn’t care what happened to her in this book. Maybe I’ll try again another time but for now, I’m setting this series aside.
Malibu Rising, Taylor Reid Jenkins
So many people have raved about this book. Jenkins tends to be hit or miss for me. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo remains one of my favorite contemporary reads of all time. On the other hand, I found Daisy Jones and the Six to be rather uneventful and forgettable. Maybe I wasn’t in the head space for this one because the drama just got annoying and I ultimately sent it back to the library unfinished.