I gave up on a book…and an author. And it was liberating.
The book was written by an author I once considered to be one of my favorites: Nora Roberts. It’s not that I like the romance genre (I don’t), but I liked Roberts’s style of writing. I still do. However, after reading fifty or more of her books and not getting anything new out of them I had begun to relegate them to the “nostalgic” group. The book you pick up when you just need something expected and easy and simple. I told myself I’d only read a book of hers when I really needed it or if I was falling behind in my reading challenge and just needed a quick read. That’s right I kept her around so that I could mindlessly check another book off my list. Eesh that’s insulting to me and to her.
I know people enjoy her books and I don’t blame them. But I realized I kept her on my list because I HAD enjoyed her, not because I still did. I kept plodding on with the In Death series because it had the quality of a security blanket. But seeing as I’m an adult I should probably only reach for that security blanket when I really need it, not consistently and just because it’s easy. So you see I’m not saying I’ll never read another Nora Roberts/ JD Robb book ever again, but rather that I’ll wait until I’ll actually enjoy it.
The book I gave up on is called Blood Brothers, but it’s not that this book is any better or worse than any of the others. In fact, that’s why I stopped reading it: it was so much like the others that I felt no need to continue on. I found myself skimming pages, then skipping them and finally flipping to the next chapter. Formula writing isn’t enough for me anymore. Perhaps if I had spread out my Roberts reading I would have continued reading her for quite some time, but as I gorged myself on her books I find that the taste of them now has begun to turn my stomach.
I’m much more interested in gender equality than I was before and I find that the In Death series is pretty sexist at times. In Innocent in Death Eve punches her husband in the face and her only reason is “because he’s a man.” Let that sink in. Sexism and spousal abuse at their finest.
As I said in my last post, I’m beginning to take a speculative look at the activity I spend some of the most time with: reading and I’m not liking what I see. However, I am delighted to say that my cure for this distaste is working quite well so far. I made a promise to make reading matter to myself again and sometimes the first step is letting go of what doesn’t matter.
Step #1: giving up on a book or an author that no longer suits you.