Buying a book without having enough time to read it is one of the biggest sins. And that’s one of the mistakes I have made in the past few months. Each time I look at “The Return of the Native”, I feel so guilty. It’s not about the price that I pay for the book but more because I completely lose my interest in reading the novel. I try reading “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” in a hope that I will be enthusiastic in resuming my reading of “The Return of the Native” but that’s all in vain.
I like the topic in “The Return of the Native”, actually. It’s about real romance and it is written by my most favorite classic writer, Thomas Hardy. At first, I find that the reading process is smooth and I love his story. The language is beautiful as usual. Unfortunately, time limit causes me unable to spend sufficient time to finish reading the book. I have to admit I’m so busy lately. I have bunch of freelance translation jobs and sometimes I have to finish office work during weekends. I abandon the novel for so long that I can no longer really enjoy the story.
Probably, you may ask: how can I read “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” so fast but not for “The Return of the Native”? the answer is: “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” is very thin and handy so that I can bring the book anywhere I go. Most of the times, I read the novel in a bus, plane, or during waiting moment. Also, the story is so amazing. So, pardon me Mr. Hardy. For this time being, “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” is definitely way above your work.
While “The Return of the Native” is the other way around. It’s so damn thick! I can no longer carry the novel every day when I go to the office. Initially, I am able to bring the book but it gradually becomes such a burden in my bag that already contains net book, cable, and other little stuff that makes my bag is quite heavy for a little woman like me. *sigh*
And the story is not as good as previous three novels from the English writer. So there you go. I get stuck with the book and I don’t count how many times I experience such kind of thing. Prior to this, I give up reading “Middlemarch” by George Eliot and “Impressions of Theophrastus Such” by the same author. From this experience, I won’t never ever touch any books by George Eliot. I simply dislike her long sentence writing style like William Faulkner’s.
Even I have this kind of experience with my most beloved author, John Steinbeck. After reading “East of Eden”, “The Grapes of Wrath”, “Of Mice and Men”, “Tortilla Flat”, I can’t believe that I need years to complete reading “In Dubious Battle” (and on-and-off reading process, of course). The novel is too political, too heavy, and too dark. To my surprise, Steinbeck’s writing is completely not smooth at all. I can’t feel any emotions while reading the book.
The worst experience about this is when I read “Fury” by Salman Rushdie. I can’t help digesting his coarse words all over the book. Plus, the story is too depressing. I don’t why I buy the book anyway. The novel is so expensive for me, about Rp176,000. *crying on the floor*
So, that’s my experience with unfinished reading novels. And the question will be on how I reclaim my enthusiasm with “The Return of the Native”? Should I really stop like I did in the past or I resume reading it?