Why I Finish All My Books

silver linings discussionI don't particularly believe in the concept of DNF (a term used by book bloggers and readers to refer to "did not finish" reads.) Do I have DNFs? Probably, although I won't know for a few years.In my experience blogging and reading, especially as I've begun to curate my taste more carefully, I don't encounter many reads that I put down. I don't encounter many reads that I dislike either, but that may be either due to my sweeping love of many genres or my pinpointed awareness of my taste. Or maybe just pure luck.It's something that I see a lot around the blogosphere. I know some bloggers who used to have memes and features about their DNF reads - "DNF Friday", for one. Those have mostly died out, but they always used to make me think. Am I just not as picky?The main reason I don't ever say I had a DNF read, or that I didn't finish one, is that I'm an eclectic reader. I'm never quite sure whether to label a book as DNF or not because I'm not sure when I'll get back to it. If I put a book down, I may pick it up later that day, later that week, later that month, never. While I classify myself as maybe being in the middle of five or six books at once, realistically I'm probably at around twenty books at a time. There are books that have grown to be my absolute favorites that I started early in a year and finished in the fall, simply because other books demanded my time - other activities took over my efforts.It doesn't make me enjoy them any less. It doesn't mean that they're boring. But because I'm SUCH a mood reader, I'm always reading bits and pieces of books rather than the entire volume. (It's a bad habit, but I don't mind.) I'll dive into one read, then decide halfway through that I'm in a high-fantasy mood. Read a chapter, then put it down for a classic I'd love to finish.I'm very back and forth. I can finish a book in an hour (shoutout to George by Alex Gino - a book that took me from midnight to 1 A.M. to read but still had a profound effect on me) or I can finish a book over the span of several months or years. Especially with classic books.I don't think all my reading needs to be fast. I don't mind a slow read because I'm very much a language person. I can handle purple prose, or drawn-out monologues. I can pace myself enough. Sometimes, I mark up classics in chunks of fifty pages (like I did with For Whom the Bell Tolls for book club in March) and read a section a day. Does that make me enjoy them any less - seemingly forcing myself to get through them? I don't think so. It's just a different experience than a one-session read (although I recognize that others might not enjoy that experience.)Another reason is that I think I've gotten to the point where I know what books I like. So if I pick a book from a bookstore - or request a review copy from a publisher - I'm relatively open to enjoying it. I think I'm pretty good about liking what I request or read (although sometimes I like them a little too much - like I said, I'm pretty good about knowing what I'll read but sometimes I get suffocated by the size of my TBR - to be read - list.)And therefore, I finish them. It may not be right after I pick it up or buy it, but I think I've finished most of the books in my library. Sometimes I'm waylaid by a book I end up hating (most recently, The Fall by Bethany Griffin, although that was last year - it's been a year since I've read a book I really didn't like.) It happens. Sometimes a book fits all the prerequisites in my mental checklist of a good read, but it just doesn't live up to it. But if Bethany Griffin wrote another book, I'd probably read it just because I enjoyed Masque of the Red Death, her first novel. One bad book doesn't ruin an author for me, although it does make me significantly more hesitant.Yet another thing? I'm a big believer in needing the right format, or the right timing.There are books I would probably have hated if I'd picked up a few years ago. There are a few books that I hated a few years ago and now adore. Sometimes, I can tell I'm just not in the right mindset to enjoy something, and I don't want to spoil a book by forcing it.Sometimes, I don't like reading a book in print but I love it on audio. The first time I read The Raven BoysI thought it was okay. I didn't connect as well to Stiefvater's characters as I did in her previous series, and therefore I didn't pick up the rest of the series. When I got my concussion last year, I wanted a good audiobook and I picked up the series on a whim from my local library. I ended up finding the subtleties in the series much more enjoyable, and becoming addicted to Will Patton's slow, charismatic narration. I actually talked with Jen about this phenomenon, and she blogged about it over at Books and Other Happy Ever Afters.I guess what I'm trying to discuss is the idea that I like to give books the benefit of the doubt. There's usually something that I enjoy about a book, if I hate something else. I tend to put books down and pick them back up again a LOT. I think it's a territory that comes with being a rereader as well. There's a give-and-take behind it. And that's why I finish all my books...eventually.

What do you think? Do you finish all your books or are you selective about dedicating your time to certain reads?