Mini Book Review Round-Up: DNF Edition

Posted February 23, 2013 by Lori in Books / 4 Comments Tags: , , ,

I have never before written a review on my blog for a book I did not finish. I just don’t really know how to write a full review for them when I haven’t read the whole book. I don’t have anything against DNF reviews, I just don’t know how to do them. But since I’ve been reading so much and there are so many books I still want to read, I have a hard time investing more time into a book that I’m not enjoying. So I’ve been having more books that I just haven’t finished. And I figured if I can’t write a full review for them, I’ll do a mini review round-up to focus on them. This way I can state my feelings for the books without having to fill a full review when I haven’t even read the whole book.

I know DNF reviews can be a bit controversial in the book blogging world. There are all different kinds of reasons that I don’t finish a book. But for me it comes down to the fact that if I completely ignore these books and the reasons that I’ve decided not to invest more of my time on them, I feel that as a reviewer I’m not doing my complete job by only talking about the books that I really liked. I feel like I need to at least mention the books that I didn’t feel were worth more of my time and maybe it’ll help someone else find books that they’ll enjoy more too.

By mentioning these books and these reasons, I certainly don’t want anyone to completely write off any of them immediately. I know everyone has different tastes and just because I didn’t enjoy one of these books doesn’t mean that you won’t. I’m simply sharing my feelings on each. I’d love to hear your opinions of the books in the comments if you’ve read them. I know Fever, at least, has a lot of fans. So please, share your reasons for loving them and maybe, maybe, I’ll change my mind and someday be willing to try these books again.

Fever (The Chemical Garden, #2)Fever (Wither #2) by Lauren DeStefano: I might get a lot of hate for this one, but I could just not get into it. I read Wither and was okay with it. I had a really hard time getting past Cecily and Linden’s relationship, though. I know this is a future society and people have been dying at young ages so they must reproduce young. But if a girl is going to reproduce at 13, why can she not also have a young guy? Why did he have to be an adult? I can’t get past a 13 year old girl with a 21 year old guy. It’s icky. No matter what the state of the world is. But that’s not really the point. I was okay overall with Wither and decided to continue the story, mostly because I really liked Rhine and Gabriel. But I just couldn’t get into Fever. It was slow for me and then they get caught again and can’t escape. I didn’t get very far, but I was frustrated and mad and just had to put it down. I still have no desire to pick it up and finish it.


The InfectsThe Infects by Sean Beaudoin: The Infects started out really promising for me. I liked the character and his protectiveness for his family. I liked that he seemed misunderstood and was just trying his hardest to survive. But then it took a turn for the weird. There was a strange incident in a chicken factory. Then he was sent away to a correction camp for his behavior and everything became crude. I am usually okay with cursing and some not great behavior when it adds to the character or the plot, but in this situation it just seemed excessive and pointless. I stopped reading pretty soon after he heads off to this camp, but I understand that soon afterwards the zombies come into play. I’m a little sad I couldn’t make it that far, but I have no desire to continue reading it. Just one more thought: I’m pretty sure I’m not the target audience for this one.


Talisman of El (Talisman of El, #1)Talisman of El by Alicia Stone: I had some high hopes for this one. It’s a young adult fantasy novel from a debut author that came out last year. I got the title from NetGalley and as soon as I started reading, I was confused. The first chapter has some strange happenings (meant to build up intrigue) and the second chapter cuts right to different characters and time. I continued reading because it was just the beginning and I was hoping for some answers, but I only ever seemed to get more questions. Things happened that didn’t seem to further the plot (at times I couldn’t even remember what the main point of the book was), some characters were mentioned and then no longer discussed, some characters seemed to have no purpose at all, and scenes didn’t seem to follow any certain path. I was confused more than I wasn’t and it frustrated me. I got almost halfway through this one before I gave up. I wish I could have made myself keep reading, it seems to be getting a lot of good reviews on Goodreads. I just didn’t want to spend anymore time on it.


Ok, those are just a few of the books that I’ve recently decided to give up on. Do you ever put a book down without finishing it? Do you write reviews for those books? Have you read any of the books I mentioned? What did you think of them? I’d love any answers to these questions in the comments. I’m still not sure how I feel about DNF reviews. But I think I mostly feel that if I’m going to review books then I need to review all the books, not just the ones I liked.

4 Responses to “Mini Book Review Round-Up: DNF Edition”

  1. I just read Talisman of El for a blog tour (unfortunately!) and while I did manage to finish it, it was awful. I hate it when indie writers claim to have their novels professionally edited, and it turns out like this book. The editing was terrible and the story was worse.
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  2. Jaime Lester

    You hit the nail on the head with the Wither series for me. I have not been able to read book 1 yet because I cannot get past the absolute ick factor. Just doesn’t appeal to me. I know people adore it, but I just don’t think that I can do it. As far as The Infects, I am sad this one was a DNF for you. I have wanted to read it for a long time, but cussing and crap like that bothers me usually. But ESPECIALLY when there is no point to it!

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