I've rented lots of tapes/CDs this month. I've even read some novels in print. And I have to say, overall I've been disappointed--by big names and newbies alike. You can see what I'm reading in any given month and my own personal review of the books on my website under My Month linked off the homepage.
Like Paty and unlike E, I stop reading when the book doesn't hold me. I'll give it a certain amount of time before I give up. How much time varies from book to book, author to author. Authors who have paid off for me in the past get more time. New authors (as in new to me, not necessarily new to the industry) have to grab me right away...and even more importantly, they've got to hold on. The first time their character does something stupid, the first time they delve into more than a paragraph of backstory or a paragraph of description, I'm gone.
Fickle? I don't know. I have noticed that I'm so much harder to please since I've started writing. Now I can see all the flaws, the unsympathetic characters, the plot holes, the info dump. It grates on me. And it bums me out because I miss the way I used to be able to lose myself in a book.
Here are a few I've read lately that really kept my attention:
- Kill the Messenger by Tami Hoag -- OMG, a must read for pacing, action, and UBER characterization. (I'm listening to Dark Horse now and I'm nowhere near invested. I'm doubting I'll make it to chapter six, but because I loved Kill so much, I'll give her more time before I return it to the library.)
- Dangerous Curves by Roxanne St. Claire -- I read this as a judge for the Daphne published contest and loved it. Read the book within 24 hrs of picking it up. No doubt it had some flaws, which I discussed with E because she had read it as well, but flaws or no, it kept me turning the pages.
Uh...that's about it. And considering I listen to or read an average of 4 or so books a month, that's really, really sad.
Do you find your joy of reading has diminished since you started writing? What exactly keeps you turning the pages of a novel? And what books have held your interest to the very end lately? Allowed you to get lost in them?