5 Tips on Reading a book when you don’t like the main character

As you may be aware I recently read the City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clare and while I stand by everything I said in the review I did hold something back that I want to speak about today. While it had been a while since I had read the books I was still invested in what happened to the characters and wanted to see if they got their happy ending. But while reading the book I realised I didn’t like the main character.

Tips to read a book with a main character you don't like

Despite my dislike of her I still wanted to see how the series ended. I wanted to know how Simon would handle being a vampire, I wanted to know how Alec and Magnus would resolve their issues, or if Luke and Jocelyn ever got married. I was still invested in the story despite my dislike of the main character.

You can continue to read a book or series if you don’t like the main character and I have included my tips on how and when to do this below!

1. Only do this if you are invested in the story of the other characters!

I wanted to know what happened to the rest of the characters. If the main character is grating on you and the story only closely follows them and you don’t see any of the other characters regularly you may decide to DNF, but if the main character is often with the other characters that you like you can focus more closely on their story as the book or series allows.

2. If the book is written from different points of view you could skip entire chapters

I am not saying that this is ideal, but if the book is written a little like Game of Thrones where you focus on different character in different chapters you could focus your attention more on the chapters where the character that you don’t like is focused.

If the story is very intricate and you need information from each of the different points of view to give you a fully rounded story skim reading might be better than completely ignoring the chapters to give you a vague idea of what has happened.

3. Read somewhere that you love to read

If you are struggling but still want to know how the book turns out try reading the book somewhere you love to read. My personal favourites are the summer hammock and the bath for a truly relaxing experience. In more normal times going and reading in a cafe or the library is also a great way to read/

4. Read the last few chapters

I am loathe to admit this but this is what I did with Les Miserables. Reading the last few chapters let me know what had happened to the characters. I could make up what happened to the characters to get them where they were or do the below tip to see what actually happened without reading another 500 pages of a book that I really wasn’t enjoying.

5. Read the Cliff notes

If you are reading the book for school or a book club, and you really aren’t enjoying it but still want to have something to discuss, other than how difficult you found reading it, you can google for the themes, the synopsis. If you can think of the question odds are someone has already answered it online.

If you have any more tips for this please let me know in the comments!

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