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Thursday, September 17, 2009

Wrapped Up in Books

It's been a long time since I've grown so frustrated with a book that I've stopped reading it halfway through and put it on the shelf indefinitely. Well, that's happened twice in the last month or so, and I chalk this all up to impatience and a large backlog of books I've been meaning to be read.

Thanks to online coupons from Borders and the existence of Half Price Books, I've almost doubled the size of my library in the last four years. Since music books are the kind of books I like to read the most, there are quite a few books I want to read. But that takes time when I only read a few pages a day, and read at a rather slow pace.

Just a Modern Rock Story, a book on Belle & Sebastian, and Perfect From Now On, a memoir about how indie rock saved John Sellers' life, are the two most recent books I just gave up on halfway through. This abandonment came after much patience and hope that the books would get better. It's not like I didn't like the subject matter of either book. I just hated the authors' styles.

Whatever books I read, I make mental notes on the ones I dislike in hopes I don't repeat the same things in my own books. So with these books, if you're going to write a book about Belle & Sebastian, it really helps that you're a fan, but don't fill paragraphs saying the same thing over and over again. And definitely don't try to be cute and write certain sentences like how Stuart Murdoch writes his lyrics. And if you're going to try to write a sincere memoir about how important certain bands mean to you, don't write it in a half-joking/half-sincere way with rambling (and unfunny) footnotes.

I still have a year's worth of books to read on my to-read shelf, and I'd like to think I'm getting caught up. I'm currently reading Ian Christie's book on the history of heavy metal, The Sound of the Beast, and it's quite a compelling read. Even though a lot of his book are stories I've already heard, I really like how he puts this together for a compelling read.

So, in other words, it's storm ahead with reading books I want to read. I don't have any assigned readings or book reports to do, so I'm not under the gun to finish a book I don't enjoy reading.

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