Wednesday, September 21, 2011

What is your page limit? Chunkster books

Hello all,

Let us discuss chunkster books and if they are worth it, ok, I know all books are worth it but really.

I agreed to a Read a thon, IT by Stephen King.  I wanted to try him again as The Girl that loved Tom Gordon was such a let down, why that was the first book given to me to try I would never understand but oh well, its done now.  So, I agreed to reading IT, a read a thon should be fun, get a chance to discuss the book, scenes etc and figure out things you may have missed, brilliant.

Then I realised it was 1000 pages, :-0  whaaaaaaaaaat, sigh

The read a thon is only approx 200 pages a month, I can do it but is it worth it?

I got it from my brother and I can't even hold it to read, I didn't even make it to 100 pages before I said forget it, I will download to my Kindle.  Even this I find a little depressing because it tells you % and it seems like you have read 25 pages before it even moves a %.

When you read chunksters do you actually leave the house with them to read or are they strictly at home reads?  It is heavier than a baby, I should actually go and weigh it........

So my main question is?

Should I continue or give up on IT?  It is good, not great and already I decided I'm obviously not going to be a fan and the word that comes to mind is excessive, seriously is 1000 pages needed.

My second thought is, do you have a page limit?  For me it would be 500 - 600 pages, that is my new standard.

I only read 1 book a week.  I do not want to spend 2 weeks or more on one book.  I am a career mommy, so work, parenting and having a life leaves me reading time for evenings and weekends, I am up at midnight almost every night.

Summary of questions/opinions

Should I give up on IT?

What is your page limit?

Name a chunkster that you thought was worth the time and you recommend to others.

Thanks, hope you are having a great week.


  1. I'm also a career mommy and I generally read one book a week. So I can definitely see where you're coming from. Honestly, my limit in terms of accepting books for review is under 400, and that's pushing it. The Forgotten Garden has been on my shelf for over a year because it's a 500+ page hardcover book and I just can't commit to that, although it is on my list this fall, when I don't have any review obligations. So would I ever read IT. No, especially if I wasn't loving it after 100 pages. I'd like to try Stephen King but his books are just way too long for me.

  2. Not being a fan of Stephen King &/or horror, I'm a bit biased. :-)

    I can say that I understand your question though. I am currently reading Middlemarch by George Eliot (848 pages). I've been working on it for weeks (eons is what it feels like) and I still have a little over 300 pages to go. Terrific character study and portrayal of small town British life. But seriously....850 pages???

  3. I don't usually read Stephen King myself, but loving the movie, I really wanted to read IT myself, but didn't get around to signing up and all that jazz. It usually takes me more than a week to read one book, so I do tend to shy away from chunksters. Have you read The Passage by Justin Cronin? I really enjoyed that one! And I know how you really enjoy books that have a sci-fi or suspense element to them.

  4. Oh, The Passage is a great example. I've had several people recommend that book to me. But I just can't do it. There are too many books to read, and I don't want to take up three weeks reading just one!

  5. Oh...and your other two questions.

    Don't really have a page limit. But War & Peace scares me.

    The Historian was good. So was The Eustace Diamonds by Trollope. And Katherine by Anya Seton.

  6. I'm very excited for my new 1000 page Murakami! But most authors, especially one I'm not already a huge fan of, or it is a classic, I don't think I'd bother. 700 pages is probably my upper limit most of the time, and usually i stick to less than 500.

  7. No, all books are not worth it. IMO, the longer King wrote, the longer and WORDIER his books got. I read It, and liked it, but I see your point. I won't discourage you from giving up, but don't give up on Steve. Try something like Cujo, Firestarter, Carrie, or The Dead Zone. I'm not a big short story fan, but King has some good collections of those, also....

  8. I am definitely more hesitant to pick up a book when it is that long. There are some books that I loved that were around a thousand pages. Atlas Shrugged and The Crimson Petal and the White spring to mind, although I can't remember if the latter was quite as long or not.

  9. I don't really have a page limit, but if the book's not working for you, I say give it up. When a book is really well written, a thousand pages can fly by.

  10. I read "It" when I was a teenager. It probably took me two months (but I wasn't nearly as prolific a reader back then and I was working around schoolwork). I loved it. But I wouldn't read it again.

    I would like to say that I don't have a page limit, but in reality, I probably do. I think my limit would probably be 750 pages. But if the book is good enough then it shouldn't matter how many pages there are.

    If you want to give Stephen King another try, pick up Carrie or Misery. I loved both of them and they were shorter.

    I wouldn't feel bad about giving up on "It" I did enjoy it, but it's not for everyone and it is very time consuming.

  11. Julie, I know blogging isn't an obligation and I love to choose books for me even when accepting review books. I think review books around 400 is perfect.

    Bev, Exactly...... is that many pages seriusly needed to execute the story well. I agree some scare me also. When I saw it was 1000 pages I said 'what have I gotten myself into' and then when I saw it, I almost said hell no.

    Jojo - I keep hearing about The Passage and have already decided I won't read it because of length. I was intrigued but not sold on it.

    Zoe - after not enjoying my first taste of SK, I do think it was a bad choice on my part. Some authors you won't mind it going on for longer.

    Annette - SK definitely has a way with words but I don't get the point, I think his style just may not be for me. Part 1 was good, Part 2 is good so far but different also, I'm not enjoying that I think, seems out of place or something. And I am not scared at all. Bring on the scary parts.

    Lola - I will definitely take notice going forward and will be very careful what I agree to.

    Kathy - I agree, when executed well and you are loving a book, the page count won't matter. I read a 500 Thriller in 3 days it was so amazing so I have to agree.

    Tara - I may finish part 2 for the discussion which is next week. If I put it down before completing and another book pulls me away, I will give in. I love horror and thought SK would be the author but it is not working out that way. I do enjoy his son's work though.

    Thanks for commenting everyone.

  12. I can see you point, Marce. I read IT many years ago, but I think that was the age of longer books. All though family sagas and even books like THE BOURNE IDENTITY by Ludlum was over 500 pages. I did like IT, but it is not my favorite King book. For that, I can recommend THE STAND, which comes in at 1200 pages as I remember. I've read it at least twice, maybe 3 times. It's been a long time though.

    I do understand that you are at a busy time of life and it's tough to decide how much energy to invest in a book that is wowing you. I say, let it go. Watch the movie, which was OK. I agree with Kathy. If you are really into the novel, it will fly by. If not, stick to your normal cutoff point, whatever that is. Life is just too short.

  13. OK, I didn't proofread and I meant a book that not wowing you. Need to start typing slower. LOL

  14. More than 600 calls for alllot of commitment.

    The only book larger than that, that I do want to read is Atlas Shrugged :)

  15. I don't know about It. I've never been a big Stephen King fan.

    As far as page limits go, I don't really have one that's set in stone. The Count of Monte Cristo was a doorstop, but I loved it. But, I have to be pretty doggone sure I'm going ot love it if it's over 500 pages.

  16. No, I don't have a page limit. One of my favorite books of all time is Robert McCammon's Swan Song which weighs in at almost 1000 pages. I loved IT, The Stand, Cronin's The Passage that was mentioned above. I'm currently rereading The Lord of the Rings which means my blog will be pretty silent in the mean time. I'm a career mommy, too, but there is no page limit on a great read for me. One fantastic book is better than three OK ones for me. A truly fantastic book will stay with me forever - much longer than the three weeks it took me to read it.

    Now - if you aren't enjoying IT, I wouldn't finish it - especially at 1000 pages. There is never enough time to read all the books you want to read. Move on to something you will love.

  17. Hmm.. I truly enjoyed IT. So I stuck with it. But to each his own. If you are not enjoying a certain book, don't force yourself. Stop reading it. Maybe pick it up again later. But I would suggest you drop it for now.

  18. I read It about 24 yrs ago. I loved it. I have no problem with chunksters as long as they're page turners. I loved Outlander, but had a problem with her next 2 since they dragged a bit. If it moves you do it, if not ditch it. You know my motto, so many books, so little time ;)

    ps just read the sample of 50 shades darker, oh my looks good!


  19. If you're enjoying it then keep reading until you're not and then stop. I tend to stay away from door stopped to begin with. Chances are all that fat just isn't necessary. But some are worth it. The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova is 400,000 words but I zipped right through it, I loved it so much. But most, in my opinion, are just overwritten.

  20. The biggest book I can think of that I loved and would recommend to others, if they haven't already read it, is "Gone With The Wind." I read it about 20 years ago, it took me parts of 3 weeks to read it. At that time I didn't have the time to read that I do now.

    The book I keep putting off reading is one by one of my favorite authors, Kristin Hannah, "True Colors" it has 491 pages. I know once I read it, I will enjoy it. I have it on my TBR list for sometime this Fall. I figure once I start reading the book it should only take me 3 or 4 days to read it.

  21. Kay - that is my main issue, I thought the decision to read a little each month was doable but that is still a week and I don't think I'm enjoying the experience. I wouldn't want to read one time but the breaks are not helping. Just a bad decision on my part I think.

    Juju - I'm not feeling committed, eek

    Carol - I think another issue is I have figured out I'm not a SK fan, deep down I know this but I feel like I should because it's my genre so to speak.

    Jennifer - I agree, if I was enjoying there wouldn't be an issue. I just don't get why it's 1000 pages, seems so unnecessary. Excessive

    Jillian - I think it's 'good' so far but not wowing me and 1000 pages I just want more.

    Thanks again everyone

  22. I read faster than most so length has never been an issue for me, at least four books a week while juggling four kids and a part time job :) Having said that its been a few years since I have read a book with much more than say 500 pages and most are around the 300-400 page length. Not a deliberate choice - it just happens to be what I am reading.
    I read It a long time ago now - I was about 13 and scared myself stupid with it - as an adult I am not sure what I would think of it but I do consider it a Stephen King classic of sorts, though The Stand is probably a bit better.
    Shelleyrae @ Book'd Out

  23. Paula, I have it plan to read it next weekend for my birthday, so excited for some 50....

    Donna, I totally think this was overwritten.

    Gigi, Kristin Hannah enjoys the 500 pages but so far I have enjoyed them. Night Road is my favorite so far.

    Shellyrae, you do read fast, I have been like wow another post, wow another review. I want to be scared but don't think it will be SK.

  24. I read it a long time ago... back in high school, after I watched the TV movie. I don't remember much, but I remember there were details in the book but not int the movie. But I was more freaked out by the movie than the book. That was the thickest book I read. Recently, the biggest one is The Passage, close the 800 pages, and I carried it with me - hardcover and lunch box and all every day :) I prefer book to be around 300 pages... I can read 2 or so a week then (when I'm not too busy.)

    Can't tell you whether to continue to read or not. I abandon book maybe to easily in some eyes. My thought is that there are too many books out there waiting for me to explore, and I have too little time to read what I don't enjoy (doesn't mean it's not good, just not my cup of tea.)

  25. My chunkster was Shantaram whcih I will recommend wholeheartedly as a wonderful read. 964 pages, heavy to hold, impossible to read in bed, spread over almost two months still good!

  26. The length of the book doesn't stop me if I am interested, but since you are showing signs of doubt and disinterest, stop reading IT. Life is too short to read boring books, I say. You can always try another Stephen King which is shorter as some have already suggested. I remember reading Gone With The Wind when I was a teen, and it was a chunky hardcover book to lug around. My newest clunky chunkies were The Passage and Under the Dome, first one I forget the author and the second is another King book. I liked them both, so I kept on with my reading of them.
    Good luck with a decision, Rae

  27. I have serious issues with chunksters too. It's sad but since I can't read almost everyday, it would take me long to finish one. By the time I am some way into it, I get bored, because my reading schedule doesn't let me get invested in the characters. But I do want to read them - I'm trying to work out a way to read more of them without getting bored. I would recommend that you give it a try, and it may also be a good idea not to restrict yourself to 200 pages - if you get invested, go full speed. You never know, it might become your favorite book of the year.

  28. I often enjoy chunky, longer books because I like the character development and shorter 300 page books seem to be over so quickly! I don't have an upper limit, but I do have a minimum. I find that if it doesn't have at least 300 pages, I shy away from it.

    I used to be a huge Stephen King fan - certainly of his earlier work. Then he got so blasted long winded! There are better, shorter books by him: Misery, Cujo and the Green Mile to name a few. For a long book, The Stand is outstanding.

    I just finished Shantaram at 1000 pages and couldn't put it down; hooked from the first page, so if by 100 pages you're not engaged, then move on! So many books, so little time!

    Oh, and I'm a new follower as I dip my toes in the book blog world!

  29. Great topic! I agree, The Girl that loved Tom Gordon wasn't so great.
    I am reading IT for the read-a-long. I've had that book sitting on my shelf for years, before my daughter was born, and she's 11 years old now. I didnt want to commit to it, because of the length.
    I'm a career mom too, so I know exactly what you mean about chunkster books.

    I love Stephen King, but he can ramble on at times. I was upset when I read Duma Key (very looong book) and disliked it. I also read his Lisey's Story and wanted to give up on him. I like his older work best.


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