So I made this deal with myself after 10-10-12 that I’d only read books I found to be “good” (noting that “good” doesn’t mean I’m enjoying them necessarily, but rather that I see some merit in reading them) and so true to this promise I’ve stopped reading Anthony O’Neill’s The Lamplighter. I’ve not adopted a particular rule for how long to give the book to win me over (should I read half of it? only a quarter? how soon do you know that a book is no good?), nor have I yet dealt with the terrible guilt wracking me: maybe the book was poised to radically improve? maybe had I given it another 30 pages it would have won me over? And this, I fear, is the trap that led me to finish “Not Without My Daughter” and it’s kind. A compassionate reader has no place in the world of far too many stories to ever read. I hope with practice to be cut throat. No more terrible books! I’ll work on some policy recommendations with respect to how long to keep reading and how to deal with the guilt and keep you posted.
I don’t get it. By all accounts I *should* enjoy The Lamplighter. It’s a historical murder mystery set in Gothic Scotland full of mystery and suspense. But I just didn’t care about the characters, found the pace plodding and the tone dull. So there you go; I stopped reading it half way in and I don’t care to say any more about it.