Last year when I made my list to join the 2015 TBR Pile Challenge, as hosted by Roof Beam Reader, I was thrilled to get to add some titles that had been haunting me for years. The Teleportation Accident by Ned Beauman was one of those books. I think that I first heard about this on one of Jen Lancaster’s blog posts about books that she loved that other people should read. She hadn’t steered me wrong yet so this one went on my list, where it was promptly ignored for the next three years.
The Teleportation Accident is a debut novel that was long listed for the Man Booker Prize in 2012. Beauman wasn’t even thirty when he wrote it and it was supposed to be wickedly funny and irreverent and great.
Well I tried to read it and after slogging through 30 pages, I decided to stop reading it.
In terms of the challenge, I guess this means that one of my alternates is going to have to step up and be counted. In terms of my reading life, making the decision to DNF The Teleportation Accident feels like the right one.
Finishing every book that I started used to be a point of pride with me. How could I know how I felt about a book if I didn’t finish it? What if it got really good and I didn’t finish it so I never knew that?
I’m finally at the point where I say that life is too short to force yourself to read. When I had The Teleportation Accident on deck, I did almost everything I could to avoid reading (my apartment is clean, the laundry was done and I even made dinner – I’m not the cook in the family). And I’m someone who LOVES to read. I read all the time – on the bus, on the couch, during sports, in the sun, before bed, at lunch, at the lake, on the road etc. Avoiding reading is not my forte. The Teleportation Accident was supposed to be funny and irreverent – I found it stuffy and self-indulgent. As far as I could tell, the main character just wants to get laid, doesn’t really give a shit about his work and has horrible friends. The book starts out in 1931 in Germany and the significance of the time probably does become something but there were no hints as to what that something would be and I wasn’t invested enough in anything else to take the time to find out.
No, The Teleportation Accident will be returned to the library unread and I will find another book to help me complete the TBR Pile Challenge.
Anyone else have trouble getting through self-prescribed reading?