Putting Off Reading Books I Want to Read

Hi everyone,

*I wish I could think of a catchier title than the one above, but unfortunately my brain is well and truly done for this Monday.*

Far, far too many times on this blog I’ve seen people recommend books that I own and want to read from authors that I have previously loved. Oftentimes, I’ll comment saying that I can’t wait to read this book and which of their other works I’ve previously loved. Do I ever pick these books up? Nope.

I took some time to think why exactly I’ve adopted this bad reading habit and how I can get out of it.

One perfect example of this is Virginia Woolf. I’ve previously read and absolutely adored To the Lighthouse. I loved it so much that it actually made my top five classics list that you can read here. However, despite owning other Virginia Woolf books, I’m reluctant to pick them up because I’m scared that her other works won’t live up to my expectations after having such a positive experience with To the Lighthouse.

I’m sure that when I do eventually pick up her other books, I’ll probably be thinking “Oh, Zoë. Why on earth didn’t you read this sooner?!” But there’s also part of me that thinks, “what if I don’t enjoy her other books?” and then my experience of her writing is completely changed. Perhaps my expectations are too high and, with that, I’m putting too much pressure on myself to like these books. This is particularly strong when I’m reading a book that is massively hyped and I’ve discussed my experiences with that before.

It’s such an irrational fear because, if I loved one of Virginia Woolf’s books that much (because of her writing style and her honesty), then why wouldn’t I love her other works?

I think it’s a similar feeling you get when you know you’re coming to the end of a series; soon this adventure and magic will be over and there will be no more. I know that, for a lot of my favourite authors (classic authors), once I read all their works for the first time, I can only ever experience them again as re-reads. Though I love re-reading books, the magic of reading a book and entering a world for the first time can’t be beaten and I do miss that feeling for certain books. So you put off reading the book for as long as you possibly can because you don’t want it to be over.

Have any of you ever been in this situation where you’ve found yourself nervouse to pick up a book you’re looking forward to? Whether that be from an author you’ve previously loved or the next book in a series? Maybe you’re the complete opposite to me and can’t wait to devour everything that an author or a series has to offer?

Let me know in the comments below and let me know how you get over this irrational fear! I need all the help I can get.

Thanks for reading.

Love, Zoë x

10 thoughts on “Putting Off Reading Books I Want to Read

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  1. I totally feel you, Zoë! When I was younger, I was always puzzled when I heard people say they were looking forward to reading a book, but then didn’t get to it for months and months, or even years. Clearly, they couldn’t have been that excited, right?

    But now that I’m a few years older, I am exactly the same 😂 Though for me, it’s not so much fear of disappointment, but that I want to be able to savor books I think I’m going to love. I don’t want to do the books an injustice by squeezing them in between countless university tasks, so then I’ll often wind up pushing them into the next break. And the next…

    Then, there’s the additional “problem” that I just know of so many more books that I want to read now than I used to! When I was a kid, I’d pretty much just grab whatever the library had and what my friends were reading. But now, with a literature degree, BookTube and fellow bloggers’ recommendations, the amount of stories I eventually want to get to is overwhelmingly huge 😅 It’s just impossible to read all of them, because there isn’t that much time in a day!

    So yeah – sorry if this doesn’t really solve your conundrum 😂 But you’re definitely not alone!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I definitely relate to this! I think with classics I know that the author won’t be releasing any new books so I want to cherish reading their works for the first time and really focus on that feeling and enjoy it. I think too often books can be seen as a “checklist” (e.g. ticking off “100 books to read before you die”) but as I’ve gotten older, I really appreciate reading books a lot slower and savouring them x

      Liked by 1 person

    1. So glad that someone else also feels the same! It’s a combination of putting too much pressure on the book to be amazing and being worried that I’ll be let down, and also wanting to cherish the book and have the magic of reading it for the first time x


  2. Haha, I am exactly the same. I absolutely loved Mrs Dalloway and have To the Lighthouse on my Kindle waiting to be read. It has been there for a while… 😉 Also, I am reluctant to pick up Homegoing after loving Transcendent Kingdom so much, because how can it ever live up to that?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know exactly where you’re coming from. I wish I could convince you to pick up To the Lighthouse because I seriously loved it so much, but I also understand the pressure we put on reading these books when we expect a lot from them!

      Liked by 1 person

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