Posted by: Jeanie F | January 10, 2010

Stuck Between Two Books

I am experiencing a weird phenomenom that sometimes occurs for me. I’m stuck between books and seem to be unable to really read either one.

Here’s what’s happening… I received, and began to read, Wolf Hall for Christmas. Love it, but it’s very long. I wasn’t able to finish. In the meantime, I’m coming up on the deadline for my January Book Club meeting. Our book is The Year of the Flood. Frankly, I would be hard pressed to find two more different books, but both are great reads.

Wolf Hall (Hilary Mantel), for anyone unfamiliar with it, is a novel based on Henry VIII’s secession from the Catholic Church from the point of view of Thomas Cromwell. Although I’ve read many different versions of this particular historical event, told from many different points of view, this is a new one and quite interesting.

The Year of the Flood (Margaret Atwood) is a futuristic dystopia in which humans – and many of the other living creatures on earth – are eliminated as a result of their own abuse of the environment. Atwood has created a fascinating society as well as an engaging story.

So – when I find myself with the time to read, I am faced with a difficult decision and paralyzed into inaction (or worse, reading People Magazine). Do I pick up Wolf Hall, which I am anxious to continue but only about halfway through the 600-odd pages, or do I dutifully finish my Book Club assignment first, knowing I have a commitment to that group to read the book?

What would you do?


  1. Oh my I see your dilemma. I would read the Book Club read because you know you need to discuss this one soon. If it is possible to do both before end of month I would just read Wolf first to get it over and done with and then Book Club so it’s fresher, but if both are inpossible definitely Wolf Hall.

    Enjoy reading – and People is a great distraction lol

  2. I agree with Marce. Since you own Wolf Hall you can read this at anytime. Once you finish Flood, you may find you enjoy Wolf Hall because you feel less pressure.
    Good luck and happy reading!

    • I’m taking your and Marce’s advice, finishing Year of the Flood today, and then it’s back to Wolf Hall. It will be a reading marathon to finish Flood before our Wednesday meeting!! Thanks for your response!

  3. Wow, both of those sound great! I guess I would just pick based on my reading mood at the time. I just started reading multiple books at once and it’s great to be able to switch back and forth depending on my moods. Good luck with your dilemma!

    • Good point, Jamye – there are worse problems than having two good books to read, aren’t there? Thanks for putting this into perspective for me.

  4. I run into a similar issue every now and then… Sometimes, heaven forbid, there is an afternoon Laker game on at the same time the Master’s is on. I end up switching back and forth and never really get a good feel for either. I just can’t commit to one or the other!

  5. Exactly! Although neither of my book choices is anywhere near as dull as the Master’s!

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