Ten Books I Almost Put Down But Didn’t


Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by the wonderful The Broke and The Bookish. This week’s list is Ten Books I Almost Put Down But Didn’t. Again, I’m thanking Goodreads. I’ve scoured my read shelf to help me. For some reason I’ve found this week’s list rather hard.  I think it’s because most of the time, if I’m thinking of putting it down, I usually do! I’ve learnt that life is too short to read something I don’t enjoy. I would pick it up again, if someone told me it gets better, but more often than not, I don’t pick up or keep going with a book I’m not enjoying.

In no particular order… (click on the book image to get to the Goodread’s page!)


I was initially put off by the size of The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova. It’s quite a chunky book. I thought I was going to put it down soon after starting, just because I found the size quite overwhelming. But I persevered and I’m glad I did, because I thought it was a great story.


It took me a while to get into this book, but I’m glad I continued to read it, because I ended up liking it. I think this may have been a book club read which is why I kept going.


I’m one of those people that thought The Casual Vacancy by J.K Rowling was okay. I wasn’t blown away, I didn’t love it. It’s not very memorable though. I’m glad I read it because I wanted to read something else by J.K Rowling that wasn’t Harry Potter.


I very nearly gave up on The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. That was purely down to the fact that I took a while to get into it. I found it quite confusing at the start. I’m glad I continued though, as it really is a spectacular story, told in a very beautiful way.


Regular readers of my blog may be surprised to see The Bone Dragon by Alexia Casale on here. However, its inclusion on this list is because my copy (an ARC) had really bad formatting issues. I nearly gave up and waited for the book to be published. I kept on going though, and I’m glad I did because I felt like I could talk about the book and create some buzz amongst my friends for a very unique read.


I have some issues with this book. I really, really wanted to like it, but the hype monster got me. I just could not understand why people were raving about it so much. However, I really did appreciate the beautiful writing, which is why I’m pleased I carried on reading it. Sorry if you’re a fan of The Night Circus but it just wasn’t for me.


It may be a surprise to regular readers of my blog to see Another Little Piece on this particular list as well, because I love this book. But it utterly confused me. I didn’t know what was going on at all most of the time.  But the story and the writing was haunting and descriptive. It’s such a unique book. I’m pleased I didn’t give up.


I was really conflicted by this book. I love books about dance, so I thought Dance of Shadows would be right up my street. It’s good, but wasn’t amazing. Yet, I’m still pleased I gave it a chance!


For me, Rebecca took a while to get going. Once I’d got past that though I was thoroughly enjoyed the book and it remains to be one of my favourite classics.


I really enjoyed The Time Traveler’s Wife. I thought I was going to be giving up with it, as the jumping around in time began to confuse me, but once I got used to it, it was fine and enjoyable!

What are your ten books that you’re glad you didn’t give up on? Did you find this topic as hard as I did? Please feel free to leave your links to your Top Ten posts and I’ll stop by!

68 thoughts on “Ten Books I Almost Put Down But Didn’t

  1. I never did finish The Casual Vacancy yet. But I really do want to. It just didn’t catch my attention when I started it, so I walked away for a bit and have yet to go back. I almost quit The Time Traveler’s Wife too. But I ended up loving it! And I really want to read Another Little Piece. It looks so interesting!

    My TTT

    • I’m glad I finished The Casual Vacancy, but it really isn’t a book that I would re-read. I’m not sure I’d recommend it either, to those that haven’t started it. I’m glad that you stuck with The Time Traveler’s Wife like I did too. It was definitely worth it!

  2. The Book Thief was a big fat DNF for me, for reasons I elaborated on in a blog post about why I hated it so much. I knew the ending anyway, from how many times the narrator gave it away.

    The book topping my list was Hermann Hesse’s The Glass Bead Game. It was really boring to slog through, in stark contrast to all his other books, but I’m glad to say I’ve read all of his novels. It was also worth it to get to the awesome poems and “Three Lives” stories after the main text.

    My TTT

    • I’m sorry that you didn’t enjoy The Book Thief. I can completely understand why it wasn’t for you though! I haven’t read anything by Hermann Hesse. It’s always nice to find an author worthwhile reading even if they do one or two boring books! 🙂

  3. I’m so happy you finished The Book Thief! It is one of my favourite books and the movie is just as fantastic. Both versions made me cry at the ending. Haha!

    I’m a fan of the Harry Potter series and yes, like you, I was curious about how she’d write The Casual Vacancy. I haven’t read it yet but I have the book waiting for me to pick it up.

    I saw The Historian at the bookstore and wow, what a chunky book! Who knows if I ever want to read it.

    Books Love Me

    • I am yet to see the movie, but I’m really excited to see it. I really worry about books turned into movies, but if you say it’s fantastic then I definitely have hope for it! I think if you’re a fan of J.K Rowling’s writing then you should definitely try The Casual Vacancy. It’s not my favourite book, but I’m glad that I’ve read it.

  4. Oh, this is the second time I have seen The Night Circus on a list. I am planning on reading it next weekend for bookclub. I hope I like it. I also haven’t read The Casual Vacancy because of the pace it has. I shall see.

    Thanks for your list!

  5. I’ve always wanted to read the historian! Glad to see you ended up enjoying it! Also, I’ve stayed far away from the Night Circus for the same reason- I’m waiting for the hype to disappear so I can maybe go into it with reasonable expectations!

    • It really was quite engaging! I was surprised as it was such a chunky book, but it really captured my attention. I hope that you enjoy The Night Circus when you get around to it!

  6. I actually really loved The Casual Vacancy. I couldn’t stop thinking about it afterwards! But you’re definitely not in the minority – so many people hated that book when it first came out. I guess the standards have been set a litttttttle high!

    • I’m really glad that you enjoyed it. It just wasn’t for me. I couldn’t connect with the characters. I think you’re right though, everyone went into reading it with massive expectations, so perhaps that was a little unfair!

  7. I’m the same way if I’m seriously considering putting a book down I do! I can understand almost putting down Another Little Piece it is really confusing and slightly hard to follow, I felt the same way. Great list! =)

    • Thank you. I tend to put down a book quite quickly as I think life is too short for bad books! I actually ended up loving Another Little Piece, but it is SO confusing to start with.

  8. the night circus is one of my favourite books, purely because it’s so different from so much of what I have already read. But I abandoned TTW and Rebecca within the first few chapters. Just could not get into them at all

  9. I gave up on Another Little Piece, just couldnt get into it!
    Also wasn’t keen but finished The Book Theif and Time Travellers Wife!

  10. I’ll admit I haven’t read any of these, but I have a couple on my shelves I’d like to one day get to: The Night Circus and The Book Thief (even though I’ve seen the movie already). I’d like to also read The Time Travelers Wife because I heard it’s better than the movie (Shocker! I know!). Glad you didn’t give up on these!

    • 😀 Thanks Jess. I think sometimes it is worth persevering with popular books to see if you ‘get’ all the hype surrounding them. I hope you enjoy the books you haven’t read that you intend to read.

  11. I’m glad you didn’t give up on The Book Thief! I think it’s one of the more original books I’ve read in a long time. Btw, I love the cover you chose!

  12. The Casual Vacancy took me about 6 months to get through. It’s definitely not my kind of book. But you know, Rowling wrote it. Gotta finish it. Lol.
    Glad you stuck with The Book Thief. It’s such a beautiful book.
    I didn’t love The Night Circus either. It was good. And the imagery is stunning. But the story was just okay for me too.
    Rebecca is quite daunting. Good for you for sticking with it. I’ll get to it one day.
    Happy reading!
    Thanks for stopping by earlier!
    Brittany @ This is the Story of My(Reading) Life

    • That’s exactly how I felt about the Casual Vacancy! I feel the same about The Night Circus too. I found it to be incredibly over hyped which is such a shame! I hope you enjoy Rebecca when you get around to reading it. It’s not as bad as it may seem!

  13. I agree with Time Traveler’s Wife! That one was recommended to me!
    I love Night Circus. It probably started off slow but it ended up being one of my favs!
    Good Picks Chrissi!!
    Come by and check out my Top Ten@ Book Hangovers
    xoxo Michelle

  14. Great picks. I read and really enjoyed The Time Traveller’s Wife but think it takes a while to get into. I never finished The Casual Vacancy, I ended up putting that one down very early on and never picked it up again. Nice picks 🙂

  15. I felt the same towards Casual Vacancy, in that I wanted to read something from her other than Harry Potter. Unfortunately, I got tired around halfway, and am yet to pick it back up. It’s happened with Cuckoo’s Calling, too.

  16. Grrr, I keep meaning to get back to The Historian. I put it down and have never gone back round to it…which is silly because I love history, have a degree in anthropology, and love vampires. I’m inspired to give it another go now.


    Jessica@The Bathtub Reader

  17. Thank goodness you picked The Book Thief back up, it would have been sad to miss it. That’s one of those books that wasn’t easy to get through but really left an impact on my by the end. Awesome list – I’m definitely going to look up the Bone Dragon now!

  18. I didn’t like the Night Circus either, not my cuppa. I chose it for my own list too 🙂 The characters didn’t work for me, and I agree with you that the writing was the best part, but it wasn’t enough for me to like the book.

  19. I just couldn’t come up with a thing for this week’s TTT! Although if I’d given The Night Circus a thought, I suppose I’d have put that one on my list. I didn’t like it. Yes, the writing was lovely, but the plot just did nothing for me — and I usually enjoy books with a fantastical feel to them. I did love The Historian, and the Time Traveler’s Wife is one of my favorite books. Great job putting together a list with a hard topic!

  20. The Night Circus was on my list too, but for me I almost stopped reading just to prolong my love of the story. 🙂 And I’m glad you kept going with Rebecca as I too think it is just a wonderful story.

  21. Aww I’m so glad you didn’t drop down The Book Thief! I finished the book in 3-4 days and had to rush a little because I borrowed it from the library, but then the deadline was passing and I was close to paying the fee. But I still loved it, though haha! 😀 A lot of people had problems with Casual Vacancy too!

    Jillian @ Jillian’s Books

    • I’m glad I continued with The Book Thief too. It was so worth it! I’m glad I’m not alone with The Casual Vacancy, I think our expectations were all incredibly high because it was J.K!

  22. I haven’t read the Book Thief yet but have seen it on a lot of TTT list this week. I totally get what you mean with the Time Travellers Wife. The whole jumping through time with all the different ages took a while for me to get used to too.

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