Wednesday, April 27, 2016

The Second Sitting Test

I've been thinking a lot about second sittings while reading lately, like how I may feel differently of a book if I read it in more than one sitting instead of one. I've also been thinking about how good or bad it is for my enjoyment of a book to read it in one sitting, two sittings, or much more than that.

Reading in One Sitting
I don't finish a book in one sitting a LOT, but if I do, I tend to really like it. I mean, I DID just spend several hours straight reading it. It takes a special kind of book to make me do that (of just something really quick). The reasons I read it so quickly may be an addicting story or a fast pace or a great romance--it could be a lot of things. There are times when I read a book too quickly, though. And I may not even realize that until I'm done reading! I just...can't pull myself away. :D

Moving On To a Second Sitting
I have a lot of things to say here!

1) I oftentimes notice more flaws during the second sitting.

I did this for Ruined by Amy Tintera. I blew through about 60 percent in one day/sitting and was really enjoying! Then I took a break to start Outlander by Diana Gabaldon and went back into the fantasy two days later. I saw one flaw after another! There was a lot that was lacking in the book that I'm not sure if I would've picked up on if I didn't take a break from it.

2) If I still love a book after the second sitting, then it's probably really good. Right?

That's where the second sitting test comes in! If I can still enjoy a book on two separate days and possibly in different moods, I take that as a good sign. It means I have a longer lasting connection with the characters, story, whatever. Plus, two sittings isn't that long of a time. To mean, that's two separate days or a sitting early in the day followed by one late at night. If I go into a second sitting liking a book much less, it's probably a good thing. Then I can see that's it's not as great as I initially thought and can write a more accurate review.

When it comes to books I read over a LOT of sittings, this especially holds true. I started The Well of Ascension by Brandon Sanderson at the end of December and finished it in March. I usually grow disconnected from a book over that long of time, but it was easy to slip back into the story. The same went for the Elantris audiobook I listened to for almost two months. In a way, they withstood the test of time--the time I spent on them!

3) But...should there always be a second sitting?

Not at all! I'm not going to stop reading books in one sitting because of my observations, but I may spend some time imagining if I would like the book as much if I spent a longer amount of time on it. Also, some books are better read all at once. Some thrillers are probably better because you stay in the zone (ha, this is a funny way to put it), which could lead to a more exciting experience. Like many things, it just depends on the book.

Does the time it takes you to read a book affect what you think of it? Have there been books that you really liked in the first sitting, but liked much less after a break?

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