This was a question I was asking myself the other day. I sat down to make reading and blogging goals for the upcoming year. I also had just been clearing out both my physical bookshelves and my Goodreads TBR shelf of books I don’t believe I’ll ever read. I was realizing that I have a kind of common thread in books on my shelves. I have the authors I really love, authors who I will read anything they write without question, authors who I haven’t experienced yet and their books are waiting to be read, and lastly there are the authors who write books that I like but I am never really blown away by. This last set of authors that I was encountering was really making me think.
When I think about it, there is a handful of authors that instantly come to mind. Every time I read one of their books I think “Hmmm, that was nice.” They consistently fall in the 3 to 3.5 star range for me. I always keep reading thinking the next one, that’ll be the one to blow me away. Yet in a lot of cases that just hasn’t been the case. Still two, three, some even four books down the line, I still am enjoying their books and left feeling slightly let down.
So then I thought, so it really comes down to what makes me keep reading? Clearly they are doing something right, since I have the urge to continuously pick up their books with that hope that it is even better than the last I read. I hear they have a new book coming out, I usually find it to sound amazing, and I add it straight to my TBR pile. Sometimes I wonder if I should stop this practice. There are so many amazing authors out there, tons I haven’t discovered yet, and I can’t help but to wonder sometimes if I am wasting my time. If it has become a consistent thing for me to read books by this author or that author that are merely good, but never great, what am I doing?
It’s probably the optimist in me. I always try to see the best in everything and I think this really pours itself into my reading tendencies. This past year was the year I finally could bring myself to DNF books on a more consistent basis. Before that, even if I was really not enjoying a book I almost always finished. Now I can look at a book and if say 50 pages in I am not hooked, I can decide maybe that is not the book for me.
So then I also was trying to figure out what is that quality that separates the good from the great. What keeps me reading these authors and passing aside the other authors who I’ve read a good book by them and chosen to pass on reading their other works. I couldn’t pin point an exact answer. I’m still trying to figure it out.
So now I pose the question to you, what makes you keep reading? Do you find yourself in a similar situation ever?