Unfinished Five

6 Aug

I love reading, I always have. I read when I’m lonely/ bored/ sleepy/ tired/ excited and any other time I can think of. I read anything written in black and white, in print or online. However, there are some books I have started but never got around to finish. No disrespect for the books, whatsoever, but I’ve come to an agreement that sometimes you just can’t finish reading what you’ve started.

1. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens.

Growing up, I fell in love with Tom Sawyer, Huckleberry Finn and not to forget David Copperfield – the first book that brought me to tears. I read few other Charles Dickens and then began Great Expectations. I borrowed it from the library, returned it months later unable to go beyond the first few chapters. Years later I found this book in my friend’s collection, borrowed it again and returned it (again) without finishing it. Again years later, I bought the book and it’s lying somewhere, still unfinished.


2. One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez

I borrowed ‘Love in the time of Cholera’ from a friend, read it, loved it and then started hunting for other books by the same author. The title of the book “One Hundred Years of Solitude” along with the familiar author’s name lured me into buying it. I kept shuffling the pages, back and forth, for about a year. Then one day a friend borrowed it and hasn’t returned it yet.

3. The Alchemist by Paolo Coelho

I was entranced by this book right from Page 1. It was an easy read and I kept turning the pages until I realised I was on the last chapter. I stopped. I have no intention of finding out what happens next or how it ends. I’ve left it unfinished, intentionally. Someday when I retire I’ll finish the last chapter – let’s say I am saving it for a rainy retired-day.

4. Life of Pi by Yann Martel

This is one book which I’ve finished reading but the reason it’s made it into the list of my ‘Unfinished five’ is because I have skipped one little part while reading this book. On my first few attempts, I could not read beyond the part when the hyena starts eying the zebra. Finally I detoured a bit by skipping the whole part there and finally finished it and haven’t regretted it ever since. I may never read that little part and yet it’s become one of my favourite books.

5. The Finkler Question by Howard Jacobson

I bought this book after falling in love with what was going on in the first page. [Confession: I never read the back cover of the book, normally where there’s a little bit about the book. I buy books on impulse.] I began reading and couldn’t stop grinning ear to ear and then after few rapidly turned pages, it came to a halt. It took me months to finish the first part and till date I haven’t started the second part.

Is it necessary to finish reading every book that you start? I love all these five books – be it the author or the title or the first few pages I’ve read. I have begun loving these books even more so for the sense of mystery they bring about and I promise to finish them someday [once I find their replacements] 😉 


21 Responses to “Unfinished Five”

  1. katlaire August 6, 2012 at 2:36 pm #

    The only time I don’t finish a book is because I either really dislike the characters or the writing is just so bad that I can’t believe the book was even published. I’ve read The Alchemist and the others you’ve mentioned are on my to read list.

    • s1ngal August 6, 2012 at 2:41 pm #

      Please read “life of pi” ~ it’s one heck of a book. From page 1 it engages you and hooks you till the end… the best part is, you’ll part this book with a BIG GRIN!!!

      As for the others, they’ll be on my to-read list for a long long time, i guess 😀

      • katlaire August 6, 2012 at 3:12 pm #

        Life of Pi is actually at the top of my list!

  2. cricketmuse August 6, 2012 at 3:07 pm #

    I see a couple which I haven’t started because I know I will not finish. I couldn’t get into Life of Pi, even though I’ve heard such great things about it. Right now I am determined to finish The Portrait of a Lady by Henry James. I started it a month ago. Usually I’m done with a long book one week tops. It’s interesting reading, but suffers from too much filler (James was paid by the word–it shows).

    • s1ngal August 6, 2012 at 5:05 pm #

      OMG, you MUST must read Life of Pi. There was a little *violence* this tender heart couldn’t take so I skpipped some pages. IT’S A GOOD READ. PL PL PL don’t miss it. begging you lol.

      Thank you for stopping by, lest I forget. The Portrait of a Lady, hmmm

      • cricketmuse August 6, 2012 at 10:56 pm #

        Life of Pi does come up on the AP reading list, which means I should try. Soooo many books, and not enough time. Argggh 🙂

  3. anecdotaltales August 6, 2012 at 3:15 pm #

    Great Expectations is a bit slow, but worth it. I liked David Copperfield more and am currently (albeit slowly) getting through Tale of Two Cities. Dickens is my favorite writer, but I have to be in the mood to wade through his slow pace.

    Life of Pi was enjoyable, but it drag towards the middle so I can’t fault you for skipping. I might tease you a bit, though.

    I need to finish any book I tried. Even “Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus”. Blerrrh. I always want to believe that the book will get better. And if it’s truly is a bad book? Then I refuse to let it get the better of me by makig me quit. I need to “win” a battle with a bad book. It makes the well-written books that much better.

    • s1ngal August 6, 2012 at 3:23 pm #

      You definitely know why i skipped that part. Teasing’s strictly prohibited.

      There are other books i have tossed away like of course ‘men are from mars…’ The books I have mentioned have made it to my list of 5 because I intend to finish them someday.

  4. David Clunas August 6, 2012 at 4:38 pm #

    You can’t stop with a chapter to go on the Alchemist! Having said that, it’s not changed my life, but it has made me look at things differently, worth reading now and not later.

    • s1ngal August 6, 2012 at 4:40 pm #

      Thank u for stopping by. I’ll think about ur advice & try finding my copy of that book. It must be somewhere.

  5. paulrothbart August 6, 2012 at 5:07 pm #

    Dickens can be painfully slow, especially compared to contemporary writing, but what a brilliant writer! You’ve got to finish “Great Expectations” some day. I’ve actually read it twice. Amazing, unforgettable characters, and themes that still resonate today.

    • s1ngal August 6, 2012 at 5:09 pm #

      I promise. i MUST read it & I will. thank you for stopping by. have you ever started a book and never got to the end of it??

  6. judysp August 6, 2012 at 6:38 pm #

    I must admit there are a few I didn’t finish. Either they were too tedious or I didn’t like the plot. I love to read and left to my own devices I would have my nose stuck in a book most of the time. However, life keeps interrupting. Food, Cleaning etc 🙂

  7. The Smile Scavenger August 7, 2012 at 11:41 am #

    Haha I finished Great Expectations… it’s just not worth it. I can’t stand the main character. He’s so full of himself and whiny. But, I can totally understand the need to complete the stack of unfinished books taunting you. I’m currently working on a few also. Good luck to you!

    • s1ngal August 7, 2012 at 11:58 am #

      1st & foremost, thanks for stopping by. I definitely think there’s Pip in all of us [although I have no clue about him except for what you’ve just mentioned 🙂 ].

  8. MsquaredInk August 7, 2012 at 11:05 pm #

    Have you read any of Paulo Coelho’s other books? Sigh. They are magnificent. I just read Aleph– his newest. So good.
    I couldn’t manage Life of Pi, either. It just didn’t hold my attention. I finally made it through 100 years of Solitude. I have a random assortment of my own “stuck in time” books. I’ll have to see what they are. I’m pretty sure that Brothers Karamazov is on the list, but I don’t remember others.

    • s1ngal August 7, 2012 at 11:11 pm #

      Thanks for stopping by. I’d read “Veronica decides to die” which kind of made me feel proud of being heavy on the insane side. And few others without much impact. That’s when I decided to move away from Coelho.

      But you’re being harsh to Life of Pi 😥

  9. AshaS August 8, 2012 at 12:16 am #

    Dear S1ngal,
    Glad to have stumbled across your post. Loved it. However, I strongly recommend you finish ‘The Alchemist’ as its a good book and you’d definitely love it. And I couldn’t have agreed more with your views about other books of Paulo’s. Besides, ‘The Time of My Life’ from Cecelia Ahern was the one I tried so much to finish but I just couldn’t bring myself to put up with the asinine idea of talking to my life (even worse, going on a date with my life)..

    Keep them coming! 🙂

    • s1ngal August 8, 2012 at 12:53 am #

      I’m glad, too, u stumbled. Well I really think some books are meant to ‘not finish’… Actually I mean to read these books someday.

      Thx 4 taking the time to comment, means a lot 🙂

  10. Frances antoinette August 9, 2012 at 7:11 pm #

    I read all of these (good choices), except the Finkler questions — nice suggestion!

    • s1ngal August 9, 2012 at 11:37 pm #

      ….I have read them but never got around to finish. :guilty:

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