Recently, I’ve noticed something, a pattern if you will, in regards to how long it takes me to get hooked by a book. I have discovered that there are two things that will get me hooked: the writing and/or the plot. And believe those are two very different things. But if done right, I won’t want to put the book down.
Whenever I’m trying new authors, I have found that I know whether or not I will like their style of writing by the first page. So what does that mean? Well right away, I can tell if the heroine will be the humorous type or morose. I can tell if she will make decisions based on logic or emotions. So I’m not talking about how an author puts together a sentence so much as how the author puts together a setting or a person. But just because I know this, doesn’t mean I’ll like the plot.
An awesome author will have me at the first page and I’ll read through the book whether or not I like the plot. But some books take steam, so how do you know whether or not to DNF (Do Not Finish)? Read five chapters… without stopping. If you make it to six than your chances of finishing the novel has increased to 90%. If you can’t make it to five without wanting to take a break than there are problems with the plot (unless the book is like 500 pages or something).
So these are my tried and true test. Do you have your own system of testing whether or not you will like a book? How long does it take you to get hooked?