I’m not enjoying this book

Do you perservere or do you give up if you’re not enjoying a book?

I took a break and read a quick and easy book that I really enjoyed, although the author/narrator began to annoy me there too. Rosie Waterland starts her memoir as if she is being totally honest and, and this bit is important, self-aware. But her use of drugs and men (and woman though this time as mentors) is exactly the same as her mother’s use of drugs, men and women to pay her way and find her happiness and ease her pain. And her sister is a single mum with little income, having had kids early too. Generational dysfunction on repeat. 

Then I took a break to write a blog post. This post. It all sounds like procrastination. Non? (BTW, I’m learning French. Slowly and badly. But still.)

So what’s the book I am avoiding. And why perservere? 

The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. By one of the Brontës. Am I the only one who finds the Brontës overwrought? Long-winded? With way too long sentences?

A quarter of the way in, I remembered I’d already read this. It obviously didn’t make a mark then. Or I wiped the pain from my memory. 

I will perservere because it is for book club. And the person who selected it said it was her favourite book of all time! I shall enjoying pointing out the error of her value judgements. 

We are actually doing two books. The second is a modern reworking of Wildfell. I’m hoping I like it more. I loved Wide Sargasso Sea. Much better than Jane Eyre on which it is centred. You really have to read them as pairs to get the full impact. 

So, back to The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. I must perservere whereas normally I would quit. No matter how worthy the book is considered, no matter it’s standing in The Canon. 

I think I will skim. 
Readers, what would you do? 



10 thoughts on “I’m not enjoying this book

  1. Salut, mob amie! I would quit reading that book immediately and take a Ferry to Cockatoo Island instead!!

    Or, take the book and see if it reads any better from a comfy couch in the Lindemans Bar, Upper Island, as you look over the Harbour on a sunny day!

  2. I would normally give up. Way too many books in the world to waste your time. BUT I usually make an exception for my book club because it’s fun to discuss the book whether I liked it or not. (My book club just discussed The Luminaries this week, and only 2 out of 7 of us liked it, but it was one of our best discussions ever). The only Bronte book I’ve read is Wuthering Heights, which I emphatically disliked. You’ll have to let us know your decision and/or opinion of Wildfell Hall!

    • The Brontës seemed to go for melodrama. I didn’t like Wuthering Heights either. Seemed like sacrilege to say so. So many love the Brontës.

      I agree when there’s an acceptance of different views, the discussion around books where there are vastly different viewpoints can be so affirming. I am glad The Luminaries sparked that. Did anyone want to visit NZ as a result of reading it? Or be inspired to read more set in NZ? It really is an amazing country – and I don’t mean the landscape (which is awesome) but the values and approach to life of the people.

      • Two of our group have been to NZ and one had even been to Hokitika beach before the book was published! You have me curious about what the national character of NZ is supposed to be like?

  3. Thanks to Dar, I now give up on rubbish books, or books that I don’t enjoy. I’ve not been in a book club, but it does add a level of complexity!

    • Yes, I agree. Books should be enjoyed. Still I got a lot from the book. And am glad I read it, though it is the second reading. What a revolutionary thought at the time: a wife could leave her husband due to mistreatment. A wife was not property.

  4. Have to agree with you. Shame they had no television, life would not have been so narrow and boring for them….an now us. Best use to date is to read before bedtime. Close book after a page and half.

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