Long Chapters

I’m not the fastest reader. But lately I’ve noticed that this gets even worse when I’m dealing with a book full of long chapters.

Long Chapters 1st Half

It’s a little better if there are breaks within the chapter, natural places to stop. But if there aren’t any breaks, the chapter represents a huge time commitment. I could stop partway through, but I hate the feeling that gives me–all vague and disconnected, not completely sure whether I’ve read a paragraph or not. So the chapter ends up getting put aside. Next thing I know, it’s two months later, and I still haven’t finished the book.

I exaggerate, but–

Long Chapters 2nd HalfOk, maybe I’m not exaggerating. What makes no sense to me is that I may end up reading the *same number of pages* in a book full of short chapters, but because they’re all short, the famous “just one more” scenario strikes, and I munch them up like snack-sized candies.

I feel like it wasn’t always this way–like when I first read the Harry Potter series (*cough* or at least the first four books), it was much easier to sit down and read for long periods of time, chapter length notwithstanding. Maybe I’m getting more impatient as I get older. Maybe it’s just that I don’t have those long stretches of time for reading anymore. Maybe it’s part of a broader cultural shift. (Not so much in book length as in attention span–I’m used to getting things faster, now.)

But really, this is all by way of saying that I haven’t finished Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire yet. I will, probably by the end of the week. I just wish that the chapters were shorter.

It has nothing to do with what the end of the book represents. Nothing at all. Or with that one thing at the end. Or the other thing. Things that happen. Or, if you haven’t read the book, things that don’t happen, maybe, at all.

Ahem. Anyway. On with the reading.