I have to read a book for school and I hate it so far

For school, we need to read The Kite Runner by Khalad Hosseini and I’m really struggling with it.

I was meant to finish it before school started… and then by last Friday… and then by this Wednesday but obviously I haven’t managed that.

I don’t understand why. Everyone else loves it! There’s a person in our class who hates reading so rarely reads but even she said it was one of the greatest books she’s read and I don’t understand why I don’t like it!

I’m normally the one who reads books in a day, who is excessively chattering about the latest book I read and how much I did or didn’t like it, analysing the writing and storytelling of a book (because I’m an English student… and a nerd) but I just feel no connection to this book.

I’ve tried reading a chapter a night, one chapter before I can read a book I want to read, one chapter when I get home from school, half a chapter on the bus, listening to the audiobook and doing something else, I’ve even watched (well… it was playing in the background, I was on my phone) the film! But every time I have to force myself to focus on it, to read the words, to listen to it. Reading has never been more difficult and I hate it. Rather dramatic maybe but it makes me want to literally claw my eyes out because I just cannot deal with it.

I have a rule with books: if I’m not into it, I don’t force myself to read it for fear of making myself not want to read anymore (which has happened) so if I’m confused or bored or just don’t want to read the book for whatever reason, I will put it down. Sometimes, I tell myself I’ll pick it back up but more often than not, I don’t. But with this one… I can’t do that.

The exam requires us to know the books and it’s characters well enough to be able to write a piece from their or an outsider’s perspective but I really don’t want to have to do that.

I love creative writing and I was so excited for it but I don’t want to have to write about these characters because I really don’t care about any of them except maybe Amir who I actively hate. I didn’t much like (I rated it 2 stars) the other book we had to do for this course (The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold) but, compared, to this one, I love it.

For me, the book lacks life. It’s description-heavy and the main character is downright detestable, not to mention every character interaction feels like it’s come straight out of my year 1 writing. It’s bland and boring and yet the text is so thick. The font is tiny and the paragraphs are massive. Each chapter is 20 pages long! It’s made me cry three times already out of frustration and I’m not even on chapter nine.

It’s like trying to wade through mud to get to a place you’ve never been because someone told you to, and there’s thick fog all around you so you can’t see. It’s tiring, it’s stressful and you don’t even know if what’s on the other side is even worth it.

I don’t know if I’m here to rant or to ask for support. I just want it to go away. I wish we could’ve chosen a different book because I really really hate this one. I don’t think I can even motivate myself with spite this time (which sometimes I can. If I know I need to read a book but I dislike it, I promise myself I’ll write the most scathing review afterwards but I need to get through it first so I have all the facts).

I dunno.

Any tips?

If you don’t have any, that’s okay. Ranting is quite cathartic lol.

I HAD THE SAME THING WITH CHARLES DICKENS!!!

So what I have found helpful (that everyone around me at the time convinced me was not helpful, but i promise for my adhd was helpful and works now as an adult) is going back and forth between the book i don’t want to read but should, and a book that interests me.

another option is audio books.

Maybe you could write a piece for the exam that will be a satire piece of the book with super exaggerated characters. Instead of reading with the motivation of a good grade on the exam, you are studying how you can make fun of the characters in your exam piece. :smile:

Another thing to keep in mind is to try having an honest conversation with your teacher. Nobody goes into teaching for the money (they are extremely underpaid typically) so there must be SOME compassion in them, and a desire to help. Without trying to look good, tell them that you are really struggling and tell them the different things you’ve tried. I don’t know the teacher or the situation so maybe thats not the right thing to do, but if you haven’t expressed with them your own frustration with your challenges, it may be worth a try. Vulnerability like that can inspire compassion in the hardest of hearts.

Another thing to keep in mind is that by this time next year, which isn’t far away, this challenge will be way in the past.

You aren’t alone.

You aren’t slow

Your teacher isn’t your enemy, they want you to succeed too.

I hope this helps!!!

Maybe the book has a tone or verbal “sound” that you haven’t found, yet. Try reading some passages out loud, and getting other people to read similar (or the same!) parts out loud, to see if there are major differences in the way you naturally put a verbal rhythm onto the words, as compared to what the other people do. There’s nothing wrong with your rhythm! (Or with theirs!) But everyone assumes a natural “sound” in their own head, and sometimes a particular author just goes directly against what you naturally assume. I had trouble with Saul Bellow and Jane Austen, until I figured out how to “hear” their language in my head differently from what I naturally would have done (and they’re both different from my natural assumptions, AND from each other). Now I love them both, and I’m glad I learned to change the sound in my head so that they would work better for me. I also have trouble with Margaret Atwood, and I haven’t tried to make her sound better … I figure she’s not worth it, haha! so there! her grammar’s not good enough! … but I guess I could if I … erm … cared enough … heh … Every author has his or her own voice, and sentences that are almost identical but appearing in two different author’s overall works can, and SHOULD, be read very differently depending on the author’s skills and context. Learning to accommodate yourself to each new author’s voice is something good readers learn to do with aplomb, and start to enjoy doing as they gain experience.

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Ive never thought of that clifton. I am going to try that next time I read!

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