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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Abandoned books

GoodReads has produced a neat infographic

It explores why books are abandoned.

The snip above is just part of the interesting information imparted by the banner -- it also covers the stages when people stop reading a book, and what keeps a reader pinned to the pages.

I was not surprised to find that the Fifty Shades series was up there with the most frequently discarded books.  On cruise ships it is a big seller (probably because the reader isn't so worried about being "caught" by his friends and neighbors with the book in his hands) and it is also a big discarder. Books that are left behind when passengers disembark usually find their way into the ship's library, but there are so many binned copies of Fifty Shades, or so I was told, that -- like the clothes that people leave behind with their cabin rubbish (and there are an awful lot of those) -- they end up being given to one of the thrift shops in port, or shipped to the Salvation Army.

It's interesting to hit the link (embedded above) though, for the many comments people have made about when they abandon books.  I have no trouble confessing that I give a book just 40 pages.  If I am not engaged in some way by then, life's too short to bother.  In fact, one page is plenty if the writing is awful.

I was rather upset, though, to see that Moby-Dick was one of the most abandoned classics.  The great whaling novel has to be read in bits, in my opinion, simply because of the power of the writing, and the deep thoughts provoked by what Melville says.  It's not a book to be read in one sitting.

1 comment:

Martin Evans said...

Regarding Moby Dick, there was a weekend event in Liverpool that centered on a three-day continuous reading of Moby Dick. It took place on board the restored old schooner KATHLEEN & MAY. Listeners just dropped in, listened for as long as they wanted to, and then left to make way for someone else. It was well attended.