Monday, March 15, 2010

kris' confessions: reading taboo #1


It will come as a total surprise to those who are familiar with me that I am frequently can occasionally be a bit of an attention seeker.

Shocking, I know.

So, I thought why not play up more than usual during my 3-day return to DIK – and trust me there will be a hell of a lot of drinking and hitting on the heroes *mutterprobablyotherpeoplesmutter* involved as well - by owning up to
all most a few of my bad reading habits.

Theoretically I’m amongst friends, right?
Hopefully?? Ladies???

*ahem*

Kris’ Reading Taboo #1


My name is Kris and I am a Chronic Reader Of Endings.

I know it's a bad habit, but I can't help myself, especially

(a) when it's so friggin’ obvious where a story is heading that I want to see if I guessed it right, and

(b) when the story is complete and utter shite and I want to see if there is any reason why I shouldn't just stop wasting my time and put the book in the pile for the secondhand bookstore straight away.

Thankfully reading ebooks has meant that I’m unable to get to the end very easily. That is, I generally have to use two hands to co-ordinate, which requires me to put down the glass of wine I'm holding. Not going to happen.

With a print book, however, there is no chance in hell that I will resist.
I can literally count on one hand the number of books I’ve read that I haven’t flicked to the end.

I kid you not.
I am that bad.

What about you?
Are you a goody two shoes or an impatient cow total rebel like me?


62 comments:

LesleyW said...

That's one of my bad habits too. For exactly the same two reasons. Though if the book is really good I won't look at the ending.

I'm terrible for reading the end of books in bookshops, when the authors are someone I haven't read before. Like you said I don't want to get to the end of the book and think what a complete waste of time that was!

Jenre said...

I try not to do this but if I'm geting bored with a book, I do tend to flick forward a few pages to see whether it gets any better. Sometimes I regret this when I read something which constitutes a spoiler.

Ebooks have definitely helped me stop doing this. Especially as on the whole I'd really rather not know cos I like the surprise that a big reveal can bring.

Kris said...

Lesley: "Though if the book is really good I won't look at the ending."

Ermmmm... No comment.

"I'm terrible for reading the end of books in bookshops..."

Me too! I've put so many books back on the shelf after decided that the ending was sucky. LOL. It's when my eyes go wide and an 'ooooh' pops out that I know I'm going to get the book regardless of how much I may have just found out.


Jen: Ebooks have been a God send in terms of negating many of my bad reading habits least of which is throwing the book against a wall when it has pissed me off. Gets a tad expensive to replace ereaders after a while. ;)

Laurije Bee said...

I read the endings, too, and I don't feel the least bit guilty about it. Everybody knows how Romeo and Juliet ends, and people still read/watch that and enjoy themselves. Being surprised isn't all it's cracked up to be, in my opinion.

Chris said...

First, that's probably Chaos in the picture - he would SO do that.

Second, I don't think I've ever peeked at the ending of a book. I hate any sort of spoilers. If a book's complete crap and I'm not even tempted to keep reading because of a sick fascination, I just put it down and put it out of mind.

Lily said...

I sometimes would look at the ending of a story but that stopped when it totally ruined a book for me. Since then I've held off reading the end, which was hard with print books, but is now very easy to do when reading ebooks.

Mandi said...

I peek all the time..I can't help myself! Just a tiny peek..

BUT - I'm too lazy to do it with the Kindle..and it makes my reading experience much different.

Sweet Vernal Zephyr said...

I indulge as well, BUT when I am so into the suspense of the story that I can't help but look ahead a few sentences...

You know, to that one line conversation that I can see peaking out of the corner of my eye... that I am sure will break the suspense of the current paragraph I am reading!

I have even had to put my hand over the last paragraph in a chapter just so my eyes wouldn't wander over for a quick hint while I am on the adjacent page!

Kris said...

Laurije Bee: "Everybody knows how Romeo and Juliet ends, and people still read/watch that and enjoy themselves."

Excellent point! I'm so using that in my defense the next time someone (aka the family) has a go at me about reading the endings first.

One of my favourite quotes is from a character in one of Jayne Ann Krentz's books, who says 'life is too short to waste time on books that end badly'. So very true. :)


Chris: "First, that's probably Chaos in the picture - he would SO do that."

That's cos Basement Cats are evil.

You've never, ever peeked at a the end? Seriously?? Hats off to you, hun. I am biologically incapable of not not looking. LOL.

Kris said...

Lily: "I sometimes would look at the ending of a story but that stopped when it totally ruined a book for me."

A book only ever gets ruined for me when I peek because I've guessed right and/or I've realised that I've totally wasted my time.

Ok. I'm seriously starting to think that I'm a nasty cow. Like that should have been news. LOL.


Mandi: "Just a tiny peek."

*snort* Is that reading with your eyes closed? That so counts!

Ereaders make life so much easier for the habitual reader of endings and, yep, it does make the reading experience much different... now I actually HAVE to read to the end to confirm my opinion that a book is shite. ;)

Donna said...

YES! I am not alone! I flip to the end for the same reasons you do. I used to finish every book I started no matter how predictable or boring ...the literary equivalent of the clean plate club...but have been freed by my (adult) daughter who rolled her eyes back in her head (she started that as a preteen and hasn't been able to stop)and pointed out the error of my ways.

Good books, I can wait for the finish...mediocre, I might wait...poorly written and boring books have 76 pages to redeem themselves and then.....FLIP!

Kris said...

Miranda: "I have even had to put my hand over the last paragraph in a chapter just so my eyes wouldn't wander over for a quick hint while I am on the adjacent page!"

And I thought I was bad. Miranda sweet, you are such a lost cause. LOL.

In all seriousness though, because I speed read I don't get to the point where I'm tempted to read something on the next page. Having said that, I have been known to flick ahead. Granted it's usually in response to my feelings of 'when will this sex scene ever end', but that still counts. ;)

Tam said...

I'm a rebel. I believe Josh Lanyon chastised me for this. LOL

I like to do it because once I know "who done it", then I see if there were clues dropped along the way. If I read the whole thing I won't remember all the little clues or did you truly toss the bad guy in out of the blue. I think that's why I like Law & Order Criminal Intent. Because you know who the bad guys are, but watching the process of getting them is the fun, not the mystery.

Other books I do as well. I read the end of No Souvenirs this weekend but amazingly not Catch me If You Can which was a mystery. So it varies, but I'm not against it by a long shot and do it on a semi-regular basis. Even in a contemporary I'm more interested in the process of getting from A to B than B itself.

Kris said...

Donna, welcome to the club! We have badges and everything. *g*

"Good books, I can wait for the finish...mediocre, I might wait...poorly written and boring books have 76 pages to redeem themselves and then.....FLIP!"

I like your system, although I tend to do it even with good books. *sigh* Yes, I am that hopeless.

I was so thrilled when I flipped to the end of the final Harry Potter book and realised that it was a token epilogue. In other words I hadn't given myself any spoilers.

Hmmm. Perhaps I have an OCD version of this habit. More than likely knowing me. LOL.


Tam: "I'm more interested in the process of getting from A to B than B itself."

I'm stealing this argument. It sounds too good not to be believable. ;)

Crime and mysteries are probably one of the few genres where I don't actually read the end as much. I'm pretty good at guessing 'who done it' and, like you, like to follow the process. The main reason I try and hold off from flipping to the end is to keep the suspense up right to that moment when the mask is ripped off the caretaker. I do love me my Big Mystery Reveal. *g*

Chris said...

Tam: In that case, I'll do a second read of the book to better see how the clues fit together!

Kris: That's one reason why I won't do those weekly memes from my current book (go to page 56, etc) unless I've already passed that point in the book. I'm pretty hard core about it. And it's one of the many reasons I ended up writing reviewettes instead of reviews - I'm extremely anti-spoiler.

wren boudreau said...

I used to be in the reading-the-end-of-the-book-is-sacrilege camp. Firmly. To the point of obnoxiousness. (Don't say it)

Then I read Kiernan Kelly's "Riding Heartbreak Road" and it scarred me for life. I was so stunned and, yes, heartbroken when I finished that book that for months afterword I had to read the end of every book before I could get comfortable with it. To this day, I still have an irrational fear that even though I am reading romance - supposedly guaranteeing a happy ending - something bad will happen and I'll be left in a puddle of not-the-happy-kind tears.

Even tho' I no longer do it with every book, there are still times when I flip to the end just to be sure. This is usually with high-emotion books, but not always.

I'm sure this is some kind of phobia.

I also have an irrational fear of lovers being interrupted mid-coitus by someone who would endanger them.

And I am afraid of brussels sprouts, but that probably doesn't have anything to with anything.

Chris said...

No, no, Wren, I think the fear of brussels sprouts is at the root of all the rest!

Tam said...

I think I am more prone to read the ending when I think I know who done it. I did not read the ending of Wren's book nor LB's because I really wasn't sure and kept changing my mind which made it more fun. If I'm 90% sure, then I check just to confirm. So I guess it depends how much fun I'm having guessing the bad guy.

I am waiting for someone after the big reveal to go "And I would have gotten away with it too if it wasn't for you pesky kids." only to cut to a scene of Shaggy and Fred screwing in the mystery machine while Daphne and Velma make out in the front seat.

"I also have an irrational fear of lovers being interrupted mid-coitus by someone who would endanger them."

Okay, that's just weird Wren. Brussel sprouts I can sympathise with. Although getting a knife in the back mid-orgasm could put a damper on things. Okay, now you've gone and made me parnoid. Sigh.

Jessica said...

Nope, won't do it, I hate reading the ending first. Spoil sports! My main bad habit, is skimming. Something gets a little slow, and before you know it, I'm half way to the end and I'm not sure what I read. So back I go, hoping to find an interesting place to start again. lol

Katiebabs a.k.a KB said...

I've read almost every ending to every book I read.

Who knows it I get run over by a bus or eaten by rabid dogs? I wouldn't know how the book ends!

lbgregg said...

I look. I skim. I do it.

Tracy said...

I never read the end of the book before the end. If it's a bad book I just stop reading. If I like it then the anticipation of getting to the end is part of the excitement!

nichem said...

Before I got my Kindle, I'd always flip to the end to see what happened. My usual order was read the first chapter, then read the last several pages, and then decide from there whether I wanted to bother with the whole book.

Now that I read mostly ebooks, that's too much of a pain, so I tend to read straight through. These days before I buy a book, though, I usually read the reviews of at least one or two people I trust first *looks at Kris who isn't doing nearly enough tastings lately*, so I'm pretty confident beforehand that I'll like the book and the ending won't suck.

Val said...

Very interesting question, Kris! I guess I'm in a minority in that I don't read the endings beforehand, especially if I'm reviewing the book. In that situation, I want to read it the way the author intended it to be read. If I'm just reading some non-m/m that I don't intend to review, I might look at the end, but usually only if the pace has slowed to a crawl and I'm about to give up on it!

Cecile said...

I so hate jumping in late.. but... **as I think this is no surprise** I do not read endings. I do not read ahead of myself.. maybe a few sentences... but that is all... Yea, I suck I know... but I can't. It goes against every fiber I have... I have tried with a few books... and I just can not.

But I do see your point if you think you know the story plot that well.. or the book is crappy..

MsM said...

I never ever do that unless I've already rated the book a DNF.
Then I flip to the last page before I toss the book in either my "too horrible to wish on one" pile or the "it doesn't work for me but might for someone else" pile of books to get rid of.

MsM

wren boudreau said...

Tam: Sorry.

Chris: Sproutophobia, with secondary bargeinophobia and ohnoesophobia.

Erotic Horizon said...

I dont think I have ever jump to the end of a book...

Why would you - that's part of the pleasure of reading getting to the end and finding that twist or even that the butler did it...

Are you mad woman...

I agree with Tracy - If's it bad or I am just off mood - I am not going to want to spoil it for myself..

E.H>

Melissa said...

I used to think it was sacrilege to read the end of the book before I finished it. But after a couple of pretty bad burns ("The Dark Tower" by Steven King, and as Wren said "Riding Heartbreak Road" and a couple of others) I compulsively check the ends now. I HATE sucky endings, they totally ruin my day!

Smokinhotbooks said...

I'm a sure thing. Er, what I mean is that I want a sure thing...bookwise. I get looks all the time in the bookstore for reading the end. Hello, what if the ending sucks? I need to know these things. I'm not proud of this, but do I stop? No. Am I going to? No.

Mariana said...

I'm totally with you on this... I do it on ebooks as well. My sister hates this because it "spoils" it, but 1. I don't mind being spoiled 2. I want to know how it ends... I'll eventually get there, so I see no reason for guilt :)

Tam said...

"Hello, what if the ending sucks?"

Exactly. Excellent point.

I'm never getting a kindle if it's hard to read the ending. I use pdf and you simply scroll down or type in the page number near the end. I refuse to bow to the whim of a machine that won't let me skip ahead easily.

Chris said...

Not that it's useful for me, since I don't check endings, but my reader does have a "go to last page" option that apparently 90% of you would love and use regularly! ;)

ErotRomReader (Janna) said...

I don't believe all the to the end flippers!! I would nevah do that! Seriously! :)

Estella said...

I never read the endings first. Ruins the whole story for me.

Ingrid said...

I will when I am not sure if I like the book half way through.

Using an e-reader makes it harder to read the last few pages for sure!

Kris said...

Chris: "I'm extremely anti-spoiler."

I'd say so. You do go to some lengths to avoid it. I for one really appreciate that approach when it comes to reviews. Even though I'm a flip-aheader, there is nothing I hate more than spoilers in a review. Shits me no end.


Wren: "To the point of obnoxiousness. (Don't say it)"

But it's so hard NOT to say it. ;)

Word on 'Riding Heartbreak Road'. That's a whole other post in itself.

Chris is right, you know. I'm certain that a psychiatrist would tell you that your fear of characters being interrupted mid sex is definitely associated with your fear of brussel sprouts.


Tam: *pats on head* You're such a paranoia sympathiser, hun. That's why I love you.

"I am waiting for someone after the big reveal to go "And I would have gotten away with it too if it wasn't for you pesky kids." only to cut to a scene of Shaggy and Fred screwing in the mystery machine while Daphne and Velma make out in the front seat."

Ok. That would be very cool. I don't even want to know what Scooby is up to, however. LOL.

Kris said...

Jessica: Come to the dark side! We have badges. ;)

"So back I go, hoping to find an interesting place to start again."

That's too funny. I can just imagine you skimming back through the book going 'nope, gratuitous sex scene, that was just stupid... oh the hell with it. I'll just got back to the end again.' LOL.


Katiebabs chook: "Who knows it I get run over by a bus or eaten by rabid dogs? I wouldn't know how the book ends!"

Very, very good point. Actually that would make a great t-shirt slogan for our little club. Mind if I steal it? ;)


LB: "I look. I skim. I do it."

The majority of us seem to do it. *ponders* Is it just this small corner of the interwebz or is DIK the centre of this outbreak??


Tracy: "I never read the end of the book before the end."

Goody two shoes!!!

Tam said...

I don't even want to know what Scooby is up to, however.

Yeah, let's not open that bestiality door shall we?

Kris said...

Richelle: "My usual order was read the first chapter, then read the last several pages, and then decide from there whether I wanted to bother with the whole book."

That's the way I shop for print in bookstores. Saves on angst.

"*looks at Kris who isn't doing nearly enough tastings lately*"

You can always check my ratings on goodreads, you know. *bats eyelashes*


Val: "I don't read the endings beforehand, especially if I'm reviewing the book. In that situation, I want to read it the way the author intended it to be read."

When I grow up, Val, I want to be a reviewer like you. Unfortunately at 36 I fear there is no hope for me. LOL.


Cecile: "I do not read endings. I do not read ahead of myself."

What not even to see when the protags start having sex?? And you call yourself a smutty hussy. I'm shocked. ;)


MsM: "I never ever do that unless I've already rated the book a DNF."

I guess that's kind of similar to my 'do I really want to waste time on this when I could be reading another book' approach to flipping to the end. There's nothing worse than having that feeling when you're reading a book, or attempting to read should I say.

Kris said...

EH: If I'm mad, I'm in good company since so many of us seem to do it. LOL. Come join us, EH... we have chocolate...


Melissa: "I HATE sucky endings, they totally ruin my day!"

Ditto. I read to be entertained. I'll read something that's totally contrived and feel goody other a book with a shitty ending any day.


KC: "I'm a sure thing." So many things that I could say, but I won't. You should appreciate my restraint.

"Hello, what if the ending sucks?"

Exactly! Also, do you want to waste money on a crappy ending? No! I'll stick with reading the endings then. Thank you.


Mariana: "I do it on ebooks as well."

Wow. You're dedicated. LOL. For me, I don't mind getting spoiled if I'm doing the spoiling. If someone else does it to me though... God, help them. Contradictory I know, but who says I have to make sense. ;)

Erotic Horizon said...

@Kris

If I'm mad, I'm in good company since so many of us seem to do it.

I agree with you there - I cannot believe so many of you guys jump to the back.... very surprising.

You are all nutters...

Not even chocolate can tempt me to do that... as Janna said - NEVAH!!!!!


E.H>

Kris said...

Tam: "I refuse to bow to the whim of a machine that won't let me skip ahead easily."

You go, girl!


Chris: "but my reader does have a "go to last page" option that apparently 90% of you would love and use regularly!"

You do realise that some of us were trying to delude our selves, right. You've just ruined it.


Janna: "I don't believe all the to the end flippers!!"

Being an end flipper is the new cool. :)


Estella: "Ruins the whole story for me."

I can definitely see how it would. For me, I get enjoyment out of seeing how the end comes about, the process of it, so it still works for me.

Kris said...

Ingrid: "I will when I am not sure if I like the book half way through."

Here. Have one of our badges. It is a habit that's harder with an ereader, although *glares at Chris* someone just told a whole bunch of us how to do it much more easily. Enabler!


Tam: "Yeah, let's not open that bestiality door shall we?"

Better not. I'm meant to be on my best behaviour here.


EH: "Not even chocolate can tempt me to do that... as Janna said - NEVAH!!!!!"

Really? But what about a hot guy with strategically painted chocolate parts. C'mon. You know you want to.

Erotic Horizon said...

Really? But what about a hot guy with strategically painted chocolate parts

Not even that - that's right up there with spine cracking for me...

This must be the good kris - trying to start a bad habit...

Evil kris - would be muttering obscenities right about now...

I miss evil kris...

E.H>

Kris said...

EH: "that's right up there with spine cracking for me"

Ermmm... Just one sec...

*makes a phone call*

*whispers* Evil Kris, would you get your butt over here and help me out with this?! EH is killing me here. What?? I have to do what?! I don't think I can... Alright! I'll do it. Yes, and I promise not to interrupt your holiday again. *ends call*

"Evil kris - would be muttering obscenities right about now..."

*attempts trout stare but turns out more like a goldfish eye*

Cecile said...

I am a smutty hussy... but no peeking.. that is like... I can not say that here... =)~

Kris said...

You were so thinking about premature ejaculation just then, weren't you, Cecile. Might as well just admit it. We all know you far too well. ;)

Cecile said...

Well I was trying to be nice for those that do not know me very well... But yea, that is what reading the ending it like... and I be damn... I will not have that.

Kris said...

You should never discount recovery time though, Cecile. Even if it may take a little longer there's always a lot that can happen during that recovery time. ;)

Jessica said...

Badges? What kind of Badges? *drools* I love Badges!

Kris said...

Jessica, there are a couple. My fave, though, is the one that says:

"What does reading the end first and premature ejaculation have in common?
They can both end up giving more pleasure."

What do you think? I think it's got a certain something to it.

Mumma J said...

Well! I was going to tell you how much that has, for probably 30 years, pissed me off when you read the ending of a book and then have to tell me what happens because you can't stand me not knowing before i pick up the book even for the first time.

BUT then you started talking 'smutty' talk and you know how much that upsets me.

SO now I'm not going to say anything! *sighHUMPH.....sigh*

Kris said...

Mumma, you're such a tattle tale! Oh, and don;t blame me for starting the smutty talk. That was Cecile's fault.

orannia said...

I don't usually read the end, but I sometimes skip ahead...to make sure a character is OK or if I'm a bit bored (to see if the story picks up :) But not the end!

Kris said...

Wuss! No badge for you then, Orannia. You gotta go hard core end-flipping to earn one of those babies. ;)

Erotic Horizon said...

I went to sleep and it seems all kind of craziness break out in this here place...

I see Evil Kris has made a return...I knew she couldn't stay down for long...

@Cecile..

I think Kris is rubbing off on you.....and it's not the good one..

E.H>

Kris said...

What the hell is this, EH?! Give Kris Backhanded Compliments Day? Hmpf!

Cecile said...

***hands on hips... pouting***
Do NOT Blame me! I did not start anything.... **humpfh**

EH... rubbing off on me huh... Not the good one... Hummm... Is that a good thing or bad.... Seems as we share the same thoughts on some things... humm... Not sure if that is bad at all... And I do love her cookies... Speaking of which!

Kris said...

*Did so start it.*

Cecile said...

**hands on hips**

Did NOT...

**stick tongue out**

Kris said...

Did too! You thought it. I just articulated it.

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