Sometimes there are moments in a reader’s life where the possibility of finishing a book is just not going to happen. This could happen for various reasons, and are only known to the reader themselves. It could either be bad writing, bad character development, bad plot, too many plot lines, confusion, lack of interest, or many other reasons a reader would stop a book. Each of these is common and can happen to any book and to any reader. There is also the possibility of loss of connection between the story and its audience. The connection that keeps the reader engaged into the story and gives the desire to read further. A good author is marked not by their writing or creativity, but by the ability to keep the reader interested and engage in their story. Lately, I was sent two books to review from different publishing houses and frankly both books were ones where I could not finish them for various reasons. The Japanese Lover by Isabel Allende and Tuareg by Alberto Vazquez-Figueroa were both books that showed promise and would have been consider books to be in my literary wheel house, but they both fell short.
The Japanese Lover is a historical fiction novel based around the retelling of a forbidden love between a Polish girl who escapes the Holocaust, and a son of a Japanese Gardener told over the span of 70 years. This book sounded amazing when it was sent to me by Simon & Schuster, and I was excited to dive right into it! It was historical fiction, which I love, so the potential was there but shortly after starting this book, the relationship was over. The basic plot is a fantastic at first glance, but the book is a maze of different characters and observations that I soon got lost in the details. There were so many perspectives and plot lines that I could not remember who was talking and which plot line belonged to which character. I was often having to re-read things and back track to refresh my memory of the story thus far; by the way I hate when I have to backtrack on a story. After backtracking several times, I gave up! I should not have to work so hard to try to remember all the things going on in the story, and it is the writer’s job to make sure the story can be followed easily without confusion or misinterpretation. This book is not easy to follow, but if you are willing to put in the time and effort this book requires then maybe you can give it a shot.
Tuareg is another historical fiction thriller based on the Tuareg people of the desert, and a man out of get revenge for a crime against him and his people. The Tuareg are a desert people who live in a nomadic pastoralist life style. They dwell in tents and are known to keep their head and face covered with a turban, only showing their eyes to others outside of their tribe. When I was sent this from John Hunt Books, I was intrigued and excited to read something different. But once I started the book, the excitement wore off really quick. Forewarning, this book does not have chapters. It is literally one giant long story with no breaks in between event; they all kind of run into one another without a pause. I thought this was a weird concept, and I haven’t read any books outside of a children’s book that would not have chapters to break up the story. Maybe it was this concept that lost my interest, but the story just ran on and on and on… like the sand of the desert. It needed the pauses, and the breaks from the story to give a reader a moment of reflection till they moved onto the next part. Tuareg left me a little breathless and not in the way a good book should. There was also that moment when I lost interest in the story, the moment where the connection between the story and the reader is lost. I am not sure what happened but one second I was reading then I just… was done. I didn’t care if the main character got his revenge or not, I was over it. I even put the book down for a day or two to see if I would come back to it. Long story short, I did not come back to it and I even forgot I had it except for when I began cleaning my desk one afternoon. I began reading it again only to put it down immediately. The story failed to keep me drawn in and engaged on to the things that the author was writing about, which is a shame. But it often happens, the story loses its appeal and the desire to read further is lost.
Maybe these books will be something you decide to pick up and enjoy more than I did, but I often feel that life is too short for bad coffee, bad wine, and bad books. There are so many amazing books out there that I do not want to spend time with those that I am not enjoying. So if you want to give these books a chance, then you should and then let me know your thoughts! If you have read either of these books then let me know your thoughts too!
Also is it just me or am I in a weird book rut where I hate all the books I am being sent? Looking back on my recent reviews, they all appear to be quite negative. Is it just me that is figuring this out or have you guys been noticing it too? Maybe I need to quit on the review requests for a bit and start reading what I know I will like for a while. Just thinking out loud of a second, but is it weird that I haven’t been liking the books I have been reviewing lately? Will ponder on this some more. I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving and YAY for it being December 1st!! I love the Christmas season, and I am wearing my Christmas cat socks with a peppermint mocha sitting on my desk as I write this now. Don’t judge me! HAHAHA!
Let me know what books you are reading now, and what books you have been unable to finish! Also let me know if you love peppermint mochas and cat socks too!
Disclaimer: I was sent Tuareg & The Japanese Lover for free for an honest review. This review is of my own work, and I did not copy or refer to any other reviewers/writers/bloggers for this post. All content provided on “A Comfy Chair” is for informational purposes only. I make no representation as to the accuracy or completeness of any information on this site or found by following any link on this site. I will not be liable for any errors or omissions in this information nor for the availability of this information. I will not be liable for any losses, injuries, or damages from the display or use of this information.
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