So here it is, December 10, and I have only read part of one book all month. I have had to return and re-check out all my other library books twice (no renewal on certain titles-- long story-- I mean, not much longer than I just told it), and I owe as much in fines on the damn book as if I would have just bought it on Amazon (not quite-- fines are $.25 a day, and i it is 15 days late, burt STILL).
I am a huge Fan of Gretchen Rubin's Happier podcast, and she said in an episode that it's good to stop reading a book if you no longer enjoy it-- in fact, she practices this herself and reads a really impressive stack of books every week that makes my monthly totals looks light. But! I cannot quite bring myself to follow this advice, and I don't know why. I think it's the same reason I can't bring myself to stop wearing clothes when they get too tight: a total admission of failure. I want to be able to break up with a book I don't love., but I feel like it;s my fault-- if I was just smarter/more hip/more worldly/smarter I would adore the book LIKE EVERYONE ELSE. I have gotten a little better at this. I HATE Jonathan Franzen and Salman Rushdie and not because I don't understand them, and I am OK with admitting this. But! I did slog all the way through both of their recent books.
The book that's holding me up this month is Jane Smiley's Golden Age. The thing is, I don't want to quit. I am invested in the Langdons because this is the third large book in a trilogy about the same family. And there are times when the book leaves me breathless because it's so astonishingly crafted-- she has this amazing ability to drop in on her many, many characters for a few brief moments that let readers understand how these characters will act in any circumstance. They are such fully realized people that we only need to peak on each of them for a minute or two. She also sets up these really intricate plot points that are then solved or written off or changed completely in the course of a conversation with another character-- readers just get to overhear the often important ending of someone else's story. I LOVE these little tidbits, and they make me focus my attention.
But! I WOULD RATHER PLAY 2048 OR LOOK AT THE INTERNET THAN READ THIS BOOK MOST OF THE TIME.
I should quit and make room for the other books on my shelf, but for some reason, I can't make myself walk away from a book I love. Maybe next year.