Book Talk is a sporadic feature where I talk about bookish but non-book review things.
Lately, when I’ve been writing my reviews, I’ve noticed that I’ve either liked the book I read or thought it was okay, and it got me think about how I used to be all “you guys, I just read this book and IT’S AWESOME, OMG, THIS BOOK!” And now I’m not really feeling that way, even when I really like or even love a book. It’s definitely not happening as much as it used to, and my feelings about books are moving more towards the middle of the spectrum instead of the extremes in terms of how I rate books.
I do think there are a few reasons why this is happening, and I just really need to talk it out.
Reason #1: I just haven’t read books that I’m super-excited about.
This is easily the most obvious thing, but I just haven’t really picked books that I’ve had a huge reaction to. But I just needed to get it out of the way. I mean, I am excited about reading, and I’m sure I’ll read something and get super-excited about how awesome it is, it just hasn’t happened yet.
Reason #2: I’ve read a lot over the last few years.
I’ve read hundreds of books over the last several years (an astounding 731 books…that seems like too high of a number, but it’s definitely correct), and I think I’ve finally hit the point where it’s just hard for me to give 5 stars to anything. At this point, it takes a lot, because I’m reminded of a lot of other books, and it’s easier to compare what I’m reading now to books I’ve read, and it’s just harder to give 5 stars.
I always felt a little weird about how much I really liked a lot of books, like I was being too positive, even though I was being completely honest about how I felt about them. But over time, I think I’ve gone gone to more of a middle ground because I have such a good idea of what I like and don’t like and I think that’s why I’ve gone from “everything is awesome” to “everything is sort of okay.” Which, now that I actually wrote that out, seems super-vague and basic, and I’m not really sure how else to explain it, or if this even makes sense to anyone except me. But with how much I’ve read since starting the blog, it does seem like I’d sort of go towards the middle at some point.
What’s changed a lot is that the books that I’ve read this year that would have gotten an OMG, OMG, OMG THIS BOOK IS AWESOME no longer gets that reaction…and those books probably would have gotten that reaction had I read it even a few months ago.
Reason #3: I’ve had a couple of reading slumps over the last year.
It definitely made reading not as much fun, and it took a while to completely get out of it. It also made it hard to be completely into what I was reading when I wasn’t into reading. When you’re having trouble focusing on reading because of stress or feeling burned out, it’s hard to be super-excited, and even your reading has gone back to normal, it still sort of stays with you. At least, it did for me and it seems sort of lame now that I think about it, but it is a part of why it was hard to have strong reactions to what I read.
And, let’s wrap up it…for now!
I think it is harder for me to find those 5 star books, and books that would have been 5 stars early on, aren’t going to get that rating. With as much as I’ve read, I think it makes sense that it would get harder for me to find those books, but I know they’re out there, even though it’s not going to happen as often as it used to.