Soupy Sundays: On Writing DNF Reviews (3)

3:32 PM

Soupy Sundays is a weekly feature at Geeky Chiquitas, where we write discussion posts about our thoughts, feelings and opinions about certain topics.

 ON WRITING DNF REVIEWS

DNF Reviews are reviews wherein the person who is reviewing the book has not finished the book. The reviewer is reviewing the book based on what he/she has read. This week, we will talk about whether or not it is okay to make a DNF review.

Since we have started blogging and reading other people's book reviews, we have seen a couple of DNF reviews. We didn't even consider ever making a DNF review at those times since we believed that every book should be evaluated wholly not just a part. After blogging for a longer period of time, we started feeling tempted to write a DNF review. There were instances when we simply did not have enough time to read the book and the publication date was nearing or instances where we just didn't want to read the book anymore and felt like we should just give up and make a DNF review but so far, we haven't made a DNF review yet.

We stubbornly refuse to make a DNF review because we think that reviewing the book when we haven't even read the full story is wrong. We also believe that writing a DNF review might be insulting to the author, especially if you were the one to request for a copy of the book. We think that the author at least deserves a review of the whole book and not just a portion of it. We are also worried that maybe if we had stuck it out until the end, we might find something redeeming and/or start to like the book more. Maybe the book gets better in the end or something happens in the first part that we haven't fully understood that will be explained in the end. We will not know whether we will be missing something important by not finishing the book so we try as much as possible to not make DNF reviews. We also think that maybe when another reader sees your DNF review, the reader who might have liked the book if he/she had read it, would become discouraged by the DNF review that has been made. We believe that writing a DNF review is a last resort, only to be done when we really cannot continue the book anymore.

Of course, if there is a reason why we don't make DNF reviews, there are also reasons why we would make one in the future or why others make DNF reviews. We really shouldn't torture ourselves by reading a book that we just don't appreciate. Instead of wasting our time finishing a book that we know we won't like anyway, why don't we just make a DNF review of the book then find another book that we might like. What's the point of finishing a book if you know that you could be reading another book that you will like and help make the book more popular? It's not really wrong to make a DNF review especially if you state before you actually write the review that you are making the review based only on what you have read. If you establish beforehand that the review you are making is a DNF review then it warns readers that the book might actually be nice if you finish it. Writing a DNF review doesn't take away the possibility that the book might be nice when you reach the end, it only shows that so far, the parts that you have read, you didn't like.

In conclusion, we believe that writing DNF reviews aren't wrong but should be avoided. If you are to make a DNF review, you should clearly state the review you have made is a DNF review and is based only on what you have read so far.

What do you think about writing DNF reviews? Do you think that it is okay? Leave a comment!

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9 comments

  1. In reply to Kimi's comment on my Top 5 Sundays post, I had seen the name of the Beast actually on a Barbie doll package. I was shopping at Xmas time for my 5 year old niece and saw a "wedding" package of Disney princesses. You had Cinderella and Charming, Rapunzel and Eugene (it actually said Eugene!!) and then there was Belle and Adam! Thought it was so weird, because I love that movie and there never once was a mentioning of his true name. But I liked that they gave him a name since it seemed rude to call him Beast after he stopped being cruel, selfish and unkind!

    Thanks for stopping by my blog today!

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  2. I know that if I had written a book, I wouldn't want a review if the book was not finished by the reviewer. However, I am guilty of writing a DNF review. I know that's bad, but I could not finish that particular book >.<

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    1. I try as much as possible to finish any book before I review it but I guess if you just can't finish it, it's fine to make a DNF review. I agree with not wanting others to make a DNF review of my book, if I had made a book.

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  3. I've written a few DNF reviews. Usually, I'll write a DNF review if I've really considered what isn't working for me as a reader and why I believe that it's not going to improve in another 50-100+ pages. (Honestly, don't think I've ever finished a book that reversed my opinion of it by the end. I'm a tough audience.) I always state up front that I haven't finished the book and try to make it clear that it's *my* opinion only. I try to be polite and professional. I won't write a review of a DNF if I don't have anything to say about the book.

    As a writer (who hasn't been reviewed yet), well, reviews! *shrug* I'm not sure a DNF review will be any worse than a bad review. In a way, it might show me where exactly I lost the reader. Every book is not for every person.

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    1. Well, I guess it's true that as an author, reading a DNF review of your book would be helpful. As a reader though, I am worried that if I do make a DNF review it might be insulting. If ever I was to make a DNF review, I would still recommend it to others, though, so that the book will still gain an audience and will still be liked by others. I agree that every book is not for every person and I, myself, am not discouraged from reading a book by reading a DNF review of that book.

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  4. I can see why people don't write DNF reviews, but I think the main thing is if someone even DNFs a book. If they DNF a book, then they can decide if they should publicize that and honestly, I don't see the harm of showing why you DNF'd a book. I like reading negative reviews (I actually actively seek them on GR) and I guess I wonder what the difference would be if I trudged through a book, hated reading it, and then finally wrote a negative review...or if I just spared myself and wrote a DNF review. Yes, it only shows one part, but really, it saves me time. It might discourage a reader, but so would a negative review, and as they know, it is only my opinion and everyone has different opinions. It's just like if I read a positive review and I get my hopes up because someone raved about it, I'll still feel my emotions while reading: good or bad. It's VERY disappointing for an author to see that someone DNF'd their book, but that is the risk of being an author. People won't finish it, they won't even TRY to read/start it, or they'll critique it. Tis life, you know?

    But like I said in the beginning, I do respect and understand people who refuse to DNF or publicize a DNF. I'm for it though :)

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    1. I actually also like reading negative reviews. Whenever I go on Goodreads to check a book out, I always make sure to read a positive rating, a negative rating, and a 3-star rating, just to see what the good part of the book is, what the bad part of the book is, and what the book is like from a neutral point of view. Becoming an author does have its risks, and some people will hate a particular book while others will love it. Maybe writing a DNF review will also help the author improve.

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  5. I had never DNF a book before I started blogging but now I have done it a few times. I really hate not finishing a book but now I have so much to read that I realise I don't need to waste my time on a book if I dislike it that much.

    I have wrote a couple of DNF reviews, but I always state that it's a DNF and I never rate the book because I don't feel I can rate the book as a whole when I haven't read it all. My DNF review usually just talks about the reasons I struggled with it or couldn't finish it.

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    1. I have never written a DNF review but feel that I might write one in the future. There are just some books that you won't like so I understand why you would make a DNF review of a book.

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