The Cool Kids' Fantasy Club discussion

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General discussion > Books that hooked you on the second try.

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message 1: by Mark (new)

Mark Lawrence (marklawrence) | 369 comments Mod
I very rarely give a book a second chance. It's simply that there are so many new books so why would I bang my head against one I gave up on?

But I know many readers find hate turns to love when they come back for a second bite.

The only example I can think of for me is Titus Groan first volume in the Gormenghast trilogy.


message 2: by Jeremy (new)

Jeremy Jackson | 24 comments Most recently, K.J. Parker's The Folding Knife. Tried it, abandoned it, and only returned after I read his Sharps, which left a favorable impression. Now I think it's one of his best, and I'm glad I read it.

A lot more depends on mood than I'd like to admit, I think. I'm too quick to make snap judgments I wouldn't arrive at on a different day. You're right, time is precious, but there's something to be said for second chances.


message 3: by Shaun (new)

Shaun | 1 comments You wouldn't believe this but A Song of Ice and Fire! I picked up Game of Thrones years ago in a second-hand bookshop in Byron Bay Australia, had just come off a mammoth Wheel of Time read and was looking for something of the same ilk and tried ... and it just didn't grab me.
Obviously have gone back and since fallen in awe of it.


message 4: by K.M. (new)

K.M. Alexander (kmalexander) | 1 comments The Lies of Locke Lamora was mine. Started it several times before I got hooked. Then I ended up loving it.


message 5: by Deb (new)

Deb | 22 comments This happens to me all the time! It really depends what mood I'm in when I start a book, and if it's not what I'm looking for at the time I put it aside. I just read Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine this week and it was amazing, but the first time I read it I didn't get past the first few pages.


message 6: by Shae (new)

Shae | 69 comments 'The Last Unicorn' (Beagle) - the first time I tried to read this I struggled to connect to the work, it felt like I was reading it through a mist.

I left it for a few years, then came back to it - not sure what changed, but I was really engaged second time around. Fantasy classic indeed :-)


Cupcakes & Machetes (hybridcreature) | 35 comments I haven't read the second book yet, but I didn't really care about Gardens of the Moon, the first Malazan Fallen book. But after hearing from other people who've read the series, I'm going to give the second book a shot before I give up completely on it.


message 8: by Carole-Ann (new)

Carole-Ann (blueopal) Probably you'll never believe this, but.... The Lord of the Rings (aka Bk 1 Fellowship of the Ring)

My best friend at school gave a copy to me at 14: couldn't read it. My mother gave another copy to me at 23 (just after 1st baby): couldn't read it.

But by the time my 3rd child got to go to school, I had some time to attempt another read. So at 36 I managed to read the whole trilogy in about 3 weeks. (Read it many times since :) )


message 9: by Shannon (new)

Shannon (shannon1987) | 1 comments Gardens of the Moon hooked me on my second (maybe third) try. Loved the second half of the book. Book 2 didn’t do it for me though.


message 10: by Jacqueline (new)

Jacqueline | 128 comments I’m 54 and have tried to read LotR a number of times over the past 30 or more years and can’t get past chapter 2 (sometimes 1) of the first book. I’m giving up and sticking with the movies. I have read the Hobbit though.

Mostly if I can’t get into a book I just walk away. And stay away. Too many books and so little time.


message 11: by Ian (new)

Ian (lonelyboy1977) | 23 comments A decade ago I read Anne Bishop’s dark fantasy debut, Daughter Of The Blood, and I absolutely hated. Last year I decided to re-read it, and to my surprise I absolutely loved it. It seems as though I simply wasn’t ready for it the first time around. 😄


message 12: by Beverly (new)

Beverly (bevarc) | 35 comments Mark wrote: "I very rarely give a book a second chance. It's simply that there are so many new books so why would I bang my head against one I gave up on?

But I know many readers find hate turns to love when t..."


Except when they are absolutely horrible, I don't give up on book in the first try. Hey, it took me 3 tries to get through Prince of Thorns and turn my hate into love!


message 13: by Pat (new)

Pat | 15 comments I couldn't get into The Hobbit first try. A friend was raving about LotR and loaned me their copy. I absolutely loved it and read The Hobbit straight after. I have never managed to read War and Peace, tried several times. I used to call it my most expensive door stop! I'm not going to try again. I hated Catcher In the Rye as a teenager and was persuaded to try it again a few years ago - I hated it more.


message 14: by Ian (new)

Ian (lonelyboy1977) | 23 comments Pat wrote: "I hated Catcher In the Rye as a teenager and was persuaded to try it again a few years ago - I hated it more"

I read The Catcher In The Rye for the first time earlier this year and I loved it. That said, I can see why it’s such a polarising book; any reader who cannot relate to the protagonist will have a hard time with it.


message 15: by Nancy (new)

Nancy Foster | 1 comments Im picky with leisure books so it's very rare for me to leave them hanging. But in regard to medical books, I have to admit that some chspters of Aldrete Anesthesia are worth reading. Just ignore the blatant technique mistakes and focus on the pediatrics chapters that are pretty well written.


message 16: by Lee (new)

Lee (leedenton_) | 2 comments The Twelve by Justin Cronin. I loved ‘The Passage’ but must have read the first 50 pages of The Twelve about 4 times before it clicked.

Perhaps one of my favourite trilogies in the end.


message 17: by Pat (new)

Pat | 15 comments Ian wrote: "Pat wrote: "I hated Catcher In the Rye as a teenager and was persuaded to try it again a few years ago - I hated it more"

I read The Catcher In The Rye for the first time earlier this year and I l..."

I know a lot of people who have enjoyed this book long after leaving school (It was a required read in UK - for a long time I think) That's what persuaded me to try again. You're right - I couldn't relate to the protagonist at all, in fact I disliked him intensely!
It's great that we all have different tastes - Glad you enjoyed it.


message 18: by Lee (new)

Lee (leedenton_) | 2 comments *perhaps one of my favourite trilogies in the end.


message 19: by Mark (new)

Mark Lawrence (marklawrence) | 369 comments Mod
Ian wrote: "Pat wrote: "I hated Catcher In the Rye as a teenager and was persuaded to try it again a few years ago - I hated it more"

I read The Catcher In The Rye for the first time earlier this year and I l..."


I also really liked that straight off.


message 20: by Pat (last edited Aug 20, 2018 08:02PM) (new)

Pat | 15 comments Mark wrote: "Ian wrote: "Pat wrote: "I hated Catcher In the Rye as a teenager and was persuaded to try it again a few years ago - I hated it more"

I read The Catcher In The Rye for the first time earlier this ..."


I agree with your opinion on books 95% of the time, but not this time Mark, no way. Could only read a few pages... maybe if I persevered, but I'd rather just dislike this book with a passion. No real real reason, just an emotional reaction to the protagonist. Does that show how well it was written, to provoke such a strong reaction from this reader?


message 21: by Molly (new)

Molly Ison | 4 comments I can't think of a book that I detested at first but later loved, but I had a better time with The Magicians the second time - the books weren't great with characterization, but the TV show was. Jeff Vandermeer's The Third Bear made a lot more sense reading it after Borne.

I'd like to reread The Gone-Away World, Cloud Atlas, Little Big, and KJ Parker's Fencer Trilogy again. I didn't hate any of them the first time but think I might enjoy them more if on a reread.


message 22: by Andrea (last edited Aug 21, 2018 09:38AM) (new)

Andrea Luhman (andrea_luhman) | 4 comments I can think of a few books where I slogged through the first 100 pages before I began to enjoy them. I've never enjoyed a book I've given a second chance to. They usually get shelved again and then I don't go back for thirds. To many better books I could be reading.


message 23: by Kevin (new)

Kevin | 16 comments Wizards First Rule I started reading when I was young and thought it was horrible, tried again a couple years ago because my in-laws liked it and it was still horrible. I really don't understand how people of any age liked it... ahh well Only book I can think of that I gave a second chance


message 24: by Al (new)

Al Burke (alburke47) | 123 comments I couldn't get into the Gunslinger back in the day. Read it again last year, roughly 25 years later, and loved it. Must be an old person thing.


message 25: by Ellie (new)

Ellie Billings | 24 comments Dracula, thought it was drivle the first time I tried to read it when I was a teenager, read it last year and absolutely loved it.
Strange how it happens.
Also, I never used to be keen on the Rincewind orientated books in Discworld but I'm reading again from the beginning and now love him too.


message 26: by E.Y.E.-D (new)

E.Y.E.-D (eye-d) | 21 comments I find I have this problem if I read a bunch of books for younger readers in a row. I have to find just the right book to get me back into stuff for adults. So if I don't pick the right book I put it down and try again once I am back in the right mindset.


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