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More Bookish Problems

Welcome to the Dear Book Nerd podcast, a bi-weekly show that answers your questions about life, love, and literature! My special guest co-host this week is Clay McLeod Chapman. We respond to three listener-submitted questions and discuss topics such as how to deal with e-galleys you are not enjoying, what to do when you relate to a character (and dislike yourself for it), and how to relate to your friends and loved ones if they don’t enjoy reading. Check it out!


Clay is the author of many books for kids and adults including “The Tribe” series and the forthcoming short story collection Nothing Untoward. You can find him on Twitter @claymcleod. Thank you, Clay!

This episode was sponsored by Book Riot Live.


Dear Book Nerd,

When I am reading a book for personal enjoyment, I have absolutely no problem quitting it if I am not enjoying it. However, I am a (newish) book blogger and a lot of my reading these days is e-galleys from NetGalley. Several of these e-galleys have been HORRIBLE, but I’ve pushed on with them for a few reasons. If I quit a NetGalley book:

1) I feel like I cannot provide an accurate review since I didn’t find out how the book ended. Maybe it would have redeemed itself by the last page?

2) If I choose not to review the book, it doesn’t help the author/publisher learn about reader opinions and it doesn’t help my Feedback Ratio. In this case, publishers might not want to send me advanced copies anymore?

3) If I quit every terrible book, my book blog would only consist of 3-to-5 star reviews (no 1-star or 2-star reviews). That doesn’t seem super helpful to my readers either.

I keep finishing every single ARC and it is making me sort of miserable. Maybe I am misunderstanding the expectations of this process. WHAT DO I DO?!?

Thank you,

Book Blogger

Dear Book Nerd,

I like to think that I read fairly widely. I usually stick to fantasy/sci-fi but I often branch out to the classics etc. With this in mind I tried to read Notes From the Underground by Dostoevsky and I couldn’t get past the first twenty pages. Not because the book was difficult, but because I disliked the main character. This isn’t my issue: my issue is that I saw myself in the description of him and I was repulsed. I suppose this is the opposite of what most people do in these types of novels. I couldn’t read the novel and the few times I’ve gone back to it I face the same problem. Has this happened to you? What can I do when I hate not the protagonist of the novel but what similarities I hate in myself, in him?


Crime And Punished

Dear Book Nerd,

I can’t get my partner or even my friends for that matter to read.
From time to time when I get really annoying they just leaf through a page of Archie comic and that’s about it.

Plus I’m sort of becoming a laughing stock among my colleagues my at work place because of my habit of reading at least a page every hour. :/

Book Hooked Worm



Net Galley

Dear Book Nerd Episode #47

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