Bookish Posts

Books I’ve DNFd Recently

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I’m embracing the ability to DNF books. Not every book is good for every reader, and that’s okay. Certain things make me DNF a book without question, but sometimes I’ll DNF a book just because I’m not feeling invested in the story, or because I don’t click with the characters. Or especially if I’m struggling to pick up the book and finding every excuse not to. And while I do my best to fully read every ARC I receive and gifted copy from an author, sometimes I just can’t make it all the way through. So here are some books that I’ve DNFd recently:

  1. The Ferryman by Justin Cronin — I DNFd this audiobook at 32% simply because I wasn’t invested in the story.
  2. Debt of Sacrifice by Piper Stone — I DNFd this audiobook at 34%. It felt strange to have a male narrate the female POV in this spicy story, and it felt like it was just spicy scenes with a side of a plot that was too easy to lose track of.
  3. Santa Ana by Addison J. Chapple — I DNFd this audiobook at 1% because of use of the “r” slur and harmful ableist comments. That was all I needed to hear.
  4. Mortal Follies by Alexis Hall — I DNFd this ARC at 33% because the story is told through the perspective of a narrator, who often inserts his own voice into the story, adding distance between the reader and the characters, making it difficult for me to identify with them. The characters come across as flat and vapid, while the story is slow-paced, and I was so sad to not like this story.
  5. The Human Origins of Beatrice Porter and Other Essential Ghosts by Soraya Palmer — I DNFd this audiobook at 40% because it just wasn’t a good fit for me. I loved the way African folktales were incorporated into the story, but at nearly halfway through, I couldn’t even tell you what the book was about or if there was even a plot, so I gave up.
  6. A Crown of Ivy and Glass by Claire Legrand — I DNFd this ARC at 25% because despite the incredibly good chronic pain and anxiety representation in the story, it wasn’t enough to compensate for the vain and self-absorbed MC, instant connection between the MC and the LI that didn’t feel real, the chaotic, disorganized threads of the story that I was already struggling to follow, and the overtly YA tone of the writing in this adult book.

What are some of your recent DNFs?

17 replies »

  1. DNF are the letters that most terrify me as a writer. I’ve only had one DNF review, and I seriously wondered why since she seemed to like story. That said , I think I’ve left only one DNF and that was because the book was badly written and not even remotely proofread. And I felt awful about admitting I’d not finished the book.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I can completely understand that! I always try to leave a little explanation for why I DNF any books, but if The Pomegranate was any indicator, you have nothing to worry about on my end!


  2. I actually haven’t DNF’d a book in a while. Mostly because I 1. haven’t been reading a lot and 2. If I put something down I label as a “maybe I’m not in the mood, I’ll try again later”. Most of the time, I don’t try again later hahah So I guess with that criteria, This Woven Kingdom is one? Although I do plan on finishing that one….I just don’t know when.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m usually pretty good about picking books that I enjoy, but every once in a while I’m just not in the right place for a certain book. So that makes sense.


  3. I recently DNF Keeper of Enchanted Rooms. Despite loving the idea/concept, I just didn’t like the way the author told the story and ultimately had to walk away. But it is still so hard for me to do. I am always afraid that if I had just stuck with it a little longer…

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Through the years I’ve tried to teach myself to DNF books when need be. Like you, if I requested an ARC, I would always try to read it, but if it was sent to me without my asking, I didn’t even always read those! Not because I didn’t 100% appreciate it, but more because I only ever tried to request the books I was as sure as I could be that I’d enjoy. I’m sorry you didn’t enjoy these books, but it’s also a good thing to be able to DNF books sometimes. Like you say, not every book will interest every reader and that’s ok. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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