I should stop agonizing over not liking a book

I’ve had a physical copy of one of John Hodgman’s books for quite some time (More Information Than You Require).  It’s one of the books I saved out of the original donation pile with the intention of reading it before we move across the country.  I like John Hodgman.  I think he’s funny.  We both like him enough that we bought tickets to see his show at The Birchmere a few years back.  We didn’t go at the last minute, for depressing reasons (still absolutely the right decision), but I’m sure we would have enjoyed the show.

I had every expectation of enjoying his book.  And then I tried to read it (this was yesterday).  I’ve been talking a lot about the books on my bookshelf and how I feel about reading them.  Some of them are really just not for me (Gormenghast, some of the Kate Atkinson novels), some of them I have REALLY liked, and some I might just not be in the mood for.  I think I’m just not in the mood for John Hodgman.  There are a lot of made-up facts, there’s a lot of ALL CAPS EMPHASIS going on, a lot of absurdity – these are all things I think are funny.  Just not this week, I guess. Or maybe for me, Hodgman’s humor doesn’t translate to the page.  Or maybe I’m just not in the right mood.

I put the book in the donation pile.  I might try again before we actually donate the books.  I might not.  It won’t be hard to get if I change my mind later.

I feel bad about this (hence the hedging and rationalizing).

Not that bad, though.  I picked up Bill Bryson’s Shakespeare book last night and was immediately more interested. I’m much happier when I’m reading something for fun and not because I feel like I have to.

I’m sorry, John Hodgman, that apparently I feel like your book is something I have to read.