Following the herd no more...

A while ago, I decided to take on a reading project I dubbed Following the Herd, the purpose of which was to read popular books I missed out on because 1) I have a natural tendency to be 'anti' anything popular 2) I'm sort of a book snob (I'm working on not being one) and 3) a lot of my friends seemed to only read books I hadn't read and never planned on reading, thus we could never compare notes or thoughts. So I took it upon myself to engage in the following (links to reviews posted below):

A Song of Ice and Fire by George R.R. Martin
The Millennium Series by Stieg Larsson
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
So what did I take from this experience?

Well...you'll notice I haven't finished two of the three book series. To sum it up simply, the Millennium Series bored me and each book in A Song of Ice and Fire is super long. In fact, I have read seven books since I cracked open A Clash of Kings (the second book) over a month ago...I did some math (beware) and that totals about 2,280 pages. Since I've only read 500 pages of A Clash of Kings, this means I read about 4.5 pages of something else for every one page of A Clash of Kings. I think that's right--if not, you get the point.

The thing is I'm a slow reader naturally. I get caught up on small details that I'll obsess over and that slows down the reading process substantially. On top of that, the books are huge and my attention span wavers. The combination makes for an extra-extended read, but the series is so interesting that I know I'll continue on.

If I have learned anything about reading popular series, it is never keep too high expectations because there's a good chance you'll be disappointed...also, I've reverted back to my first 'flaw'--I just don't care what's popular. If it's truly good, I'll get around to it eventually, right?

ps:..isn't that sheep wild?



  1. Gotta admit it. I don't care about popular either. And I tend to be disappointed it something has been hyped too much. I guess I'll just keep reading what appeals to me and on those blue moon occasions when it aligns with what the rest of the world is reading, I'll take advantage of it.

    1. Yeah, my expectations were high for The Night Circus and Girl with the Dragon Tattoo...fail.

      Haha, blue moon occasions--that is such an accurate description.

      I really wanted to talk books with my friends, but our preferences are so different.

  2. I've read a piece by Chuck Klosterman the other day where he was saying, never when he enjoyed a movie or a book, he really wished there would be a sequel. I thought it was brilliant. There's a marketing aspect in series that has nothing at all to do with art.

    1. Sequeltology(?) Very interesting. I think it is somewhat unnatural to want a sequel as a viewer/reader/consumer, once you've reveled in a novel creation. The series that follow rarely ever exceed expectation or impress...but it does make perfect sense commercially. Or does it? I haven't seen half of those movie sequels in that tournament. And as you can see, I don't finish book series efficiently--but then again it's probably just me being 'anti'.

  3. I wouldn't consider reading 1Q84 "following the herd." Haruki Murakami is being considered for the Nobel Prize this year. I think that's literary snob material. ;) (On the flip side, I don't really think he'll win this year....there are better candidates being considered.)

    1. Wow. I didn't know that. Now I have to see who else is being considered.

      1Q84 was just so...odd. I guess I tossed it in with this group because I thought people were raving about it. But this news definitely makes it literary snob material.

      Thanks for visiting!