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Old 11-08-2012, 10:35 AM   #1
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Book length

Anyone else get 'scared' upon a book that is a certain length?

I don't know what it is, but whenever I see a novel that is over 600p long, I tend to shy away. Strangely enough, Harry Potter on the other hand is a different story.

I recently attempted Under The Dome by Stephen King and got around 200p in and stopped. I enjoy King's writing, and the plot drew me in, but at over 1000p, my mind got the best of me as the story wasn't keeping me from staying with it.

Game of Thrones is another one; stuck with it to the end but ultimately, I didn't end up enjoying it or believing the hype.

Interested to know what everyone elses opinions are
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Old 11-08-2012, 10:44 AM   #2
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Not at all. Some of my favorite books are upwards of 900 to 1,000 pages or more. If i see an author I've enjoyed in the past has written a new, long book I tend more to get excited at the prospect.

Regardless of the length, I'm always a bit sad when a book that's giving me hours of enjoyment and escapism ends.

“Each book was a world unto itself, and in it I took refuge.”
Alberto Manguel, A History of Reading
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Old 11-08-2012, 10:47 AM   #3
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I'd have to be highly motivated to read a 1000 page book. I read reasonably fast, so it is not the time to finish, but the doubt that a book can have 1000 pages of quality entertaining writing. Of course I am into plots that move along and not humongous descriptions and info dumps and referrals back to previous books etc. After two paragraphs of non story related stuff I tend to zone out.

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Old 11-08-2012, 11:06 AM   #4
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With a good author and story line, the longer the book is, the better. There are many a book that I have read that I wished the story to go on and on. A large book gives the author the space to build and detail the story line's ecosystem.
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Old 11-08-2012, 11:35 AM   #5
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Although I do give consideration to whether I'm prepared to invest the time in a very long book, it's not that the long length bothers be. If the book seems to be of interest to me, I really look forward to when I'll get the time to delve into it, with the expectation that a rich and complete immersive experience awaits me. ("The Stand" and "11/22/63" come to mind...maybe I need to add "The Dome" to my reading list.")

On the contrary, I'm put off by too-short novels. It makes me feel like I may get slighted in content. Not in sheer quantity, but in the fear that there isn't enough space to deliver a well-built world, deep plot twists, believable characters, adequate back-story and satisfying resolutions, etc.

Which is a little odd, because the short story is probably my favorite form of fiction.
I have different expectations and wants from a short story. A good short story should know it's a short story, and not be just a poorly-fleshed out novel attempt, or be a short story masquerading a novel.

Last edited by ApK; 11-08-2012 at 12:09 PM.
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Old 11-08-2012, 11:43 AM   #6
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It depends on my mood. For months after having finished books 1-5 of the Game of Thrones series I was kind of burned out on longer books, and would sort Calibre by page number (I have a custom field) and pick books with less than 400 pages.
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Old 11-08-2012, 11:49 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DustyDisks View Post
With a good author and story line, the longer the book is, the better. There are many a book that I have read that I wished the story to go on and on. A large book gives the author the space to build and detail the story line's ecosystem.
I agree. I actually prefer books to be at the very least 450 pages. I don't usually read anything below that unless I really like the author. I read pretty fast and I like having the extra amount to get through to stretch it out as long as possible.
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Old 11-08-2012, 12:08 PM   #8
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I dislike the new publishing rules that every book must be between 200 pages. It's too short for me. I grew up on classics where 500+ is the norm... and whenever I find a modern book that has more than 400 pages, I'm super happy and start reading it right away.

I'm currently going through The Vicomte de Bragelonne by Alexandre Dumas, that is around 2,000 pages long. One of the best reads I've had in a while.

I've also enjoyed immensely βehemoth by Peter Watts. It's at around 600 pages, and it needed all those pages to tell the whole story. And it was kind of annoying that the publishers made him split the last book of the trilogy into two 300 page books.
Otherland series, where the books are around 700-800 pages each, are also one of my favourites.

Anything less and I feel disappointed, unless it's a trilogy or more, as the book feels too short for me, and the story is either too rushed and underdeveloped.
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Old 11-08-2012, 12:13 PM   #9
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Actually my ereader has helped me with my fear of long books. I never wanted to tackle them because they were intimidating and the print was too small. But now, I can make the print any size I want and I don't have the physical heft to intimidate me.

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Old 11-08-2012, 12:21 PM   #10
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200 pages is on the "too short" end of the scale for me. i also tend to dislike novellas and short stories. but I top out around 500 or 600 pages. With rare exceptions (Name of the Wind, Wise Man's Fear) I feel that the 1000 page wonders would reallly benefit from tighter editing.
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Old 11-08-2012, 12:33 PM   #11
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As long as the book is a good read I do not care how long it is. Except in the case of really good books that I wish were longer.
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Old 11-08-2012, 12:34 PM   #12
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I find book length to be irrelevant... the only point is whether I think the content will interest me and if the answer is "Yes" then I could care less about length as one of the joys of eReaders means that I can handle a thousand page book as easily as a ten page short story...
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Old 11-08-2012, 01:37 PM   #13
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I very much like long books but I'm OK with "medium" size books too.
I would probably pick longer books in preference to under 200 page books.

My current two favourite SF authors are Peter F. Hamilton and Neal Asher.
Asher writes "medium" length books but Hamilton goes for the epic size.

I have the "Night Dawn's" trilogy in hardbacks and those 3 books are really heavy (each is close to or over 1000 pages).
But I love those books! The story is so vast, there are so many "main" characters, it's great!

I have also read other long books, by other authors, which frankly bored me. I guess it's up to the writer to keep the reader turning the pages. Some can do it and some cannot.

This may sound weird but with a long book that I really like I start feeling a bit sad once I get to the last quarter or so.
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Old 11-08-2012, 03:11 PM   #14
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I dont pay attention to the length as long as its a good read i will read it i recsntly read a book that was 800 pages didnt mind at all
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Old 11-08-2012, 04:03 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Apache View Post
As long as the book is a good read I do not care how long it is. Except in the case of really good books that I wish were longer.
Apache
Yep! Though I do wish I could tell before I download an ebook roughly how many pages it is.
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