Topical Tuesday

Topical Tuesday: Did Not Finish

DNF – or Did Not Finish – means exactly what it suggests: you didn’t finish something. Here’s my thoughts on guilt-fuelled DNF.

Putting a book on my DNF goodreads shelf always comes with a bit of guilt – but today I wanted to focus on specifically choosing to DNF a read to review book, or an ARC.

For me, personally, it’s always a difficult decision. I don’t want to let the author down, but at the same time, I want to enjoy what I’m reading – I don’t want to feel weighed down with feeling obligated to read something I’m not into.

It’s especially difficult if I feel the book is good, just not the right fit for me. When I hate a book, or have a big problem with it, I feel I can justify the decision to DNF it – but when I think a book is decent yet don’t want to continue, I feel unjustified.

There are a lot of reasons I can chose to DNF a book.

  • Offensive/insensitive approach to topics.
  • Poorly written (grammatical/spelling/typing errors).
  • Wrong genre/not as described.

I try to give indie authors an equal chance when reviewing books, but that only complicates the problems further – I feel worse when DNF-ing a book from an Indie author compared to a more mainstream novel.

It’s a problem I guess will get easier as I continue to blog and gain more experience – but for the moment, it’s definitely something I struggle with, and as a result I haven’t been accepting book reviews at the moment. Anyway, it was good to get that off my chest. I’m enjoying Topical Tuesday so I think it’ll be sticking around for a couple of weeks as a trial run!

What do you guys think about DNF-ing in general compared to a read to review book, or an ARC? Do you feel the same pressure to continue reading books provided by an author? Let me know in the comments!

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7 thoughts on “Topical Tuesday: Did Not Finish”

  1. I will DNF a book when it takes my enjoyment of reading away. I feel some guilt about it, but in the end, sometimes it’s not necessarily the author or book, but that it’s just bad timing for me to read that particular book.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I have yet to DNF an ARC…there’s a middle grade book that I started but can’t seem to finish and I might end up DNFing it! It’s just not that interesting.
    I’ve also read one book that had so many errors I had to rate it down, and the author got upset bc she said it was a proof. Well, if the errors are making the book hard to read, then I can’t very well rate the book high now, can I?
    So I get it: life is short, and most authors and publishers understand if you have to every once in awhile bc it’s not your cup ‘o tea.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve made a part of my review policy mention the errors part – I still can’t help but feel guilty. There have only been, I think, two so far – one of them was because it had heavy incest that I wasn’t warned about prior to reading. The other was a book through Netgalley I requested on a whim and turned out to be vastly different from the synopsis.


  3. I’ve yet to DNF a book. I’ve come close, but just can’t bring myself to do it because I’m seriously stubborn and way too curious haha. I totally agree with the premise though. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with it because life is too short to keep reading books that we’re not enjoying.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It wasn’t until book blogging that I started to DNF a few books – and I think it’s because the new blogger I was in June saw free books and said yes to pretty much everything. Now I’m learning to be a lot more selective, but I still feel bad about turning authors down (since I try to make myself accessible to indie authors too).


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