Quick Thought: Returning “Rough” Reads

Welcome back to Reading, Reading, Reading!

When I first started my blog in 2013, I created a series called “Quick Thoughts“, where I would discuss my opinions about different aspects about the reading/bookish community. While I haven’t continued the series as often as I had hoped, I want to bring it back in 2019 and start discussing some new topics!

Today, I have a question for all of you. When you read a book that you REALLY did not enjoy (1-2 stars), do you ever return it to the bookstore you bought it from?

Recently, I read a book that I really really did not enjoy. I had high expectations since it was a nationally acclaimed book, but I found the writing style very confusing and hard to follow. The premise of the book sounded excellent, but it made an unexpected turn that I did not appreciate.

The book I am talking about happened to be a “Heather’s Pick” novel. Heather Reisman, the CEO of Chapters Indigo, choses books that she has loved, and adds them to her “Heather’s Pick” lists. When a book gets chosen, it is an honour for the author and publishing house. A unique aspect to consider when you purchase books that are apart of this list, is that you have a 100% money back guarantee if you did not enjoy this book.

Personally, I do not think I will be returning this book, because I bought it with the intentions of giving it to my Mom to read, which she has not yet done. However, in other circumstances, I would definitely have considered returning it.

This is a very interesting topic, as a book is a form of entertainment that can be returned after fully being read/”used”. Whenever you watch a movie from a theatre, or watch a live action play or band, you are not allowed to get your money back if you did not enjoy it (in most cases). The same goes for spending money on a class or active session.

What are your thoughts on returning books you did not enjoy? I’d love to chat with all of you in the comments!

Good Night Book Owls!


24 thoughts on “Quick Thought: Returning “Rough” Reads

  1. I honestly didn’t really know it was a thing to return books to the store if you’ve already read it hihi. When I end up not liking a book, I ‘get rid’ of it by giving it to another read or maybe sell it as a second hand book. There aren’t any kind of shops here who have a 100% money back guarantee when you’ve read it, but I think it’s great tho! I don’t want to hold onto books I didn’t enjoy and if you can get a refund, it’s definitely something I’d be interested in.

  2. I wouldn’t of really considered this a thing to be honest. Like you said you can’t get your money back if you didn’t enjoy a movie or such like. I think that’s why libraries are great as you can pick up books your a bit unsure about without committing to buying them.
    Gemma @ http://www.gemmasbooknook.blogspot.com

  3. I’m so glad you’ve decided to pick up Quick Thoughts again!☺️

    I’ve never considered returning a book I didn’t like, but so far the majority of the books I haven’t enjoyed came from the library, so that hasn’t come up often for me. I had no idea that Heather’s Picks books had a money back guarantee, thanks for telling us this! I will for sure keep that in mind if I buy one I don’t end up enjoying!

  4. Interesting. I guess I would never return a book because I have so many author friends and see the work that goes into books. There are people that read a book all the way through and then return it on Amazon and that just doesn’t seem right to me. But I suppose if something is one a list like that, maybe it would be different? Very thought-provoking post 🙂

    1. Thanks Megan! When you hear (or even read about) the process of writing a book and publishing, it seems like such a huge, energy exhausting process, so that makes a lot of since when you say you wouldn’t return a book because you have a lot of author friends.

  5. When I don’t like the book I’ve just read, I usually keep it on my shelf until it’s time for me to give it away to someone/a library. But if this program has a specific money-back guarantee that’s not too hidden in small print, I’d say return it! Get a book you’d enjoy more! I’m always scared of buying physical books, and so I don’t really do it. I use my library or a friend’s library and only ever buy classics or adult books I know I’ll love to read in the future again. But if there’s a special money-back guarantee policy for this specific program, trade it for a new book!

    1. Thanks for the comment, Rita! I totally understand when you say you are worried about buying physical books because you are unsure of how much you will enjoy them. Borrowing books from others is always a fantastic strategy!

  6. I would consider it to be totally uncool to return a read book, it would be the equivalent of returning clothes you have worn and decide you don’t want! You used it, you read it and regardless of liking or not liking – it is yours to keep, donate, sell to a used bookstore, give away, toss in the trash, or light on fire.

  7. Is that even a thing? I thought once you have read it, it is yours, similar to using a dress. This is a new thing to me.

  8. I’ve never considered returning a book… burning it in a funeral pyre maybe, but not returning it. It’s an interesting thing to consider, and I think it is cool that Heather’s Picks CAN be returned. I probably would just donate the book though personally.

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