Tuesday, April 26, 2011

From the Mailbag: When Is a Book "Read?"

Normally I'd throw this in to a Free for All Friday post, but since I'm doing a giveaway this Friday, I thought I'd throw this out here to fellow readers now.

Kim (@girlfrombim) asked the following:
So I know you don't believe in struggling through just to say you finished a book. What do you do when you have started a book on goodreads and it's in your currently reading...but you know there's no way in hell that you want to finish it? Do you count it as "read"? 
Believe it or not, I was just thinking as I was road tripping a few weekends ago.  I started listening to three different books.  The first two didn't hold my attention enough for me to finish them, BUT I did listen to at least 40% of both of them.  Do I count them as read on Goodreads?  I think so, and here's why.

I devoted at least four hours of listening to both.  Had I been actually reading them, I would have finished each within a four hour time span.  Not only that, by devoting time to them, I delayed reading something that I really enjoyed.  If someone were to ask me about them, I would be able to give them enough of a synopsis for them to determine whether or not it might be an enjoyable read for them. So while I didn't complete it, I read it enough to know that it wasn't the book for me.  And in all fairness, I don't review books I haven't finished.

What say the rest of you? Do you need to read 100% of a book to qualify it as read? At what point in reading a book do you feel comfortable enough to offer your opinion on it? 30%? 50% 100%?

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