How Long is Worth It?

Okay, so the title is a bit misleading for those of you who are erotica readers/writers (and maybe a few others). I’m actually referring to how long we should stick with a book if it hasn’t reeled us in immediately. This weekend I had the privilege of starting to read a new book. I don’t have much free time these days so this really was a golden moment. Well imagine my disappointment when nearly 40-50 pages in, the author still hadn’t reeled me in. As usual this got me thinking. How tolerant are we when it comes to the unfolding of a story, or will a catchy beginning suffice?

I will refrain from naming the book I’m reading as I haven’t yet finished it so it really wouldn’t be fair to say that the book isn’t worth it.  In fact, I’ve heard many people talk about certain books that take a while to get into but are incredible books. A couple such books are Stephanie Meyer’s The Host and Stieg Larsson’s The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Unfortunately, I haven’t had the chance to read either of these books so I can’t say whether this is true. Still, unless you have a “name” out in the published world, I can’t imagine it would be easy to persuade a reader to stick around after 60-100 pages if your book tends to drag. All the more reason to either have a stellar beginning that grabs your readers’ attention or somehow create enough suspense early on that you keep your readers interested enough to keep turning the pages.

So what do you think? Any books out there with beginnings that drag that you would recommend? Or perhaps you’ve come across one of those books with a stellar beginning that kept you engrossed from the beginning? Either way, what made the book worth it? Happy writing this week! And don’t forget to review your beginnings of your manuscripts to make sure you are doing all you can to captivate your reader!

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2 Responses to How Long is Worth It?

  1. Gerri Brousseau says:

    Hi Toni,
    I am struggling with The Dragon Tat right now. It is a chore at the start, but starting to get interesting now. I recently read a book and it was well over half read before it began to get good. I must confess, I will not be doing that again. One book I simply could not get into was The Story of Edgar Sawtelle, which was highly recommended by Oprah. But I couldn’t get into it, as I have found with most of her recommendations. I no longer struggle. If it doesn’t grab me, I’m putting it down. Period.

  2. jennajaxon says:

    I fet this way with Outlander. Once she gets to the time travel part it’s smooth sailing. But I thought the lead in was a bit long. I usually don’t quit on a book, but then I’m picky about what I read (which isn’t a lot these days). And I prefer a book to begin with action–really grab me–rather than setting or character building.

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