What comes first, the reading slump or the book? An investigation concerning Passenger by Alexandra Bracken (no spoilers)

Yesterday I was hugely proud of myself because I managed to finally (finally) finish Passenger by Alexandra Bracken. I’m not going to lie, I had a huge moment of triumph as I closed the pages of this book. Honestly, it was a winning movie moment if ever there was one.

Context: This book has taken me ages to read. I’m not sure quite how long but it’s definitely over to two week mark, which for me is a really long time. To be fair, this novel might have been a long read because I have been busy during those two weeks. But, the biggest issue was that whenever I picked up the book, I couldn’t concentrate for more than a few pages at a time. This left me feeling particularly slumpish, and made me start to wonder, what came first: the slump or the meh book?

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Argument for the slump coming first:

To quote myself, in my WWW post on 20th September I mentioned that I was ‘intrigued’ by Passenger, and in a comment, said that I was finding the novel ‘really exciting’. I’m not sure how much of the book I had read at that point, but I feel like I was obviously enjoying it.

Over the next few days, I did a lot of long shifts volunteering, which led to me feeling really tired. It’s maybe logical, then, that in my tiredness I fell into a reading slump which meant that I couldn’t concentrate on reading at all. Passenger just happened to be the unfortunate book I was reading at the present time.

Argument for the book coming first: 

Picking up this book was a bit of a risk. As you might know if you’ve read my blog before, I don’t read too much fantasy but recently decided to take a chance on the Six of Crows duology which I ended up loving. Following this experience, I decided to try another fantasy in Passenger and found it just wasn’t for me. Additionally, Passenger is sort of a mash up of the fantasy and historical fiction genres. Now, if fantasy is a genre I don’t often pick up, historical fiction is one I often purposefully avoid. Perhaps, then, it wasn’t the book itself which sent me into this slump, just that the book wasn’t for me.

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Chapters. Oh my goodness, the chapters in this book are long. Again, this is a point of personal preference, but I quite like my chapters to be short, so that I can set goals for myself and easily reach them. The main issue for me with having such long chapters, was that I ended up stopping in the middle of said chapter. Then, when I picked up the book again, I had to fight to remember what had just happened, which led to me feeling a little confused, and more than likely, putting the book down again within a few minutes of picking it up. Thus, of course, creating a vicious cycle which pretty much lasted throughout the entire time I read this novel.

I’m not going to lie, I just didn’t really feel anything much reading this book. There was time-hopping throughout, there was a section on a boat, there was a pretty daunting big bad. Basically, there was a lot going on in this novel but it just didn’t make me very excited. In the same way, I thought the principal pair were ok but I wasn’t squealing about them or anything.

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A bit of both? 

After some consideration, I have come to the conclusion that perhaps the meh book and the reading slump made a deal behind my back and worked together to grind me down. I was tired and not concentrating a lot of the time I read this book which obviously did impact my enjoyment. Despite this, I’m pretty sure this novel wouldn’t have been one of my favourites even if I was feeling as fresh as a daisy, because it just wasn’t the book for me.

Part of me wants to try and read this novel again when I’m not in such a slump to see if I do enjoy it, but another part just wants to move onwards and upwards!

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So, there we have it. Have you had an experience similar to this before? Which book were you reading? What do you think came first? Also, have you read Passenger while not in a reading slump and what did you think of it?

As always, happy reading!





4 thoughts on “What comes first, the reading slump or the book? An investigation concerning Passenger by Alexandra Bracken (no spoilers)

  1. I’ve still not read Passenger but I know what you mean because I felt like this when I was trying to get through Flame in the Mist last month. Although I wanted to read it, whenever I got part way down a page I couldn’t be bothered to continue. I came to the conclusion that the book wasn’t for me but afterwards I was very much in a reading slump. I always wonder if it is a combination of both factors. I’m trying to get out of the slump by re-reading the Grisha Trilogy, which I love, but I’m finding it difficult to read Ruin and Rising without my mind telling me I ought to be reading something else. I think at the end of the day it is one of those blurred lines and questions to which we can never give a logical and direct answer.

    Liked by 1 person

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