Long Books vs. Short Books

Long Books vs. Short Books 1024 576 Reader Views
Skyler Boudreau, Book Reviewer

As a kid, I took a lot of pride in reading big books. Most of my favorites were absolutely massive tomes, and I could finish them within a few days. As an adult, the amount of time I’m able to spend reading has definitely been cut down, but I still really enjoy long books. One of my current favorites is Samantha Shannon’s The Priory of the Orange Tree.  If anyone’s looking for new fantasy, I highly recommend it. It has some of the best world-building I’ve ever read and includes everything from dragons to pirates to magical oranges.

While I still love long books, I’ve read a lot of excellent shorter ones in the past few years too. They’re easier to fit into my schedule, and I can read a lot more of them in the same amount of time it would take for me to read one very large book.

I’ll pick up a book of any length as long as it looks interesting. The length only bothers me if it affects the quality of the book.

A lot of pages isn’t always a good thing in a novel. Sometimes that extra length comes from too much filler content or repetition. If a book is long because the author is repeating themselves over and over again, then the reader will eventually get annoyed. They’ll struggle to get through it and some might even choose not to finish it. If the plot or the characters get lost in the extra pages, then it would be more beneficial to make some cuts rather than hang on to every paragraph. It’s better to shorten the book than to waste the pages on scenes that don’t really matter.

One of the things that used to turn me away from shorter books was that oftentimes I would read one, enjoy it immensely, and then feel that it was too short. If that book was a part of a series then it wouldn’t matter, because I could just find the next one in that series. However, many of the short books I read were also standalones. I would get frustrated at just getting a small taste of what I wanted to be a much larger world. In short books, there isn’t always adequate room to explore every aspect of interest. Sometimes the plot suffers for that, other times it’s the characters or the setting.

As a writer, finding right length for your novel is a tricky business. You want to include all of your favorite parts, but sometimes they just don’t pertain enough to the story itself. Other times you might cut too much in fear that you’re rambling. As a reader, I want the novel to be long enough for me to fully immerse myself in it, but not so long that it feels like I’m reading filler material.

What length of books do you prefer?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.