Saturday, July 25

DNF Directory #1: The Girl from the Well & Mind Games & Where You End

You may think me biased, being murdered myself. But my state of being has nothing to do with the curiosity toward my own species, if we can be called such. We do not go gentle, as your poet encourages, into that good night.

A dead girl walks the streets.

She hunts murderers. Child killers, much like the man who threw her body down a well three hundred years ago.

And when a strange boy bearing stranger tattoos moves into the neighborhood so, she discovers, does something else. And soon both   will be drawn into the world of eerie doll rituals and dark Shinto exorcisms that will take them from American suburbia to the remote valleys and shrines of Aomori, Japan.

Because the boy has a terrifying secret - one that would just kill to get out.


Luna is a no-hoper with a secret: in a world of illusion, she can see what is real. But can she see the truth before it is too late?

Luna has always been able to exist in virtual and real worlds at the same time, a secret she is warned to keep. She hides her ability by being a Refuser: excluded by choice from the virtual spheres others inhabit. But when she is singled out for testing, she can’t hide any longer.

The safest thing to do would be to fail, to go back to a dead-end life, no future. But Luna is starting to hope for something better, and hope is a dangerous thing...


Miriam Feldman was always attracted to the artists, the musicians, the boys who wore broken-down cardigans. Boys like Elliot. Their relationship was intense, passionate, all consuming. When they were together, Miriam knew who she was, in the way you can only know when you're deeply in love. But then it ended, and Miriam had to move on. Even after Elliot started seeing someone else. Even after she impulsively destroyed a priceless work of art. Even after she was blackmailed by the mystery girl who saw her do it. After all this, Miriam had to go on with her life. If only she knew how.

The Girl from the Well by Rin Chupeco

I had huge expectations for The Girl from the Well, but can you blame me? It is advertised as Dexter meets The Grudge and has a cover to die for. Plus the summary promises the bestest ghost story ever, one that is actually based on a Japanese ghost story. What could go wrong? Many things as it turns out. Here come my four main reasons for putting down this books. 
  1. It was painfully slow. I can definitely enjoy slow books, if they're done right, nothing proves that better than my love for The Fall by Bethany Griffin. However, The Girl from the Well's slowness made it super-boring. I'm still kind of interested in how things will turn out but definitely not enough to endure more from this torturously boring read.
  2. The writing annoyed me to no ends. The narrative changes from 1st person to 3rd person within a paragraph, which makes the novel confusing and very hard to get into. At the same time, I have to give credit to the author because she does writes in a very unique way and I'm glad she's brave enough to experiment with such an uncommon writing style. (Thus the two stars) Is horror the best genre to experiment with such a narrative, though? I start a horror book to be creeped out not to discover a poetic author.
  3. The main character is not the cool and interesting character she sounds from the blurb. She does absolutely nothing, but watches people from afar and counts random things. Are you looking for a book about a badass ghost girl who takes revenge on those who deserve it? Do not read The Girl from the Well because you'll be utterly disappointed.
  4. The other characters are just as fascinating as Okiku. In the little more than 50% of the novel I've read I've barely learnt anything about Tark and Callie. He's hurt over his mother, and she is very caring and nice and wants to help Tark no matter what it takes. But where are the complex and realistic characters in this novel?

“When you have resigned yourself to an eternity filled with little else but longing, a few seconds is enough.”

Final Rating: 
Mind Games by Teri Terry 

This is going to be a very curt review but I honestly don't have a lot to say about this book, even though I've read nearly 50% of it (that's my goal before DNF-ing a novel). So my four reasons for DNF-in Mind Games. 

  1. It's never a good feeling when the only thing you can ask yourself while reading a novel is: what the hell am I reading? Seriously, by the 50% mark I was still not completely sure what this novel is supposed to be about. That said I think some people might enjoy it. Just don't start it if you can't bear a sort of pointless looking story that might make sense by the end.
  2. The writing, while not terrible, is incredibly choppy and sooo boring at some parts, at others it's pretty decent.
  3. The characters were as far from complex as they could be. Luna is nice... but who is she really? What is she besides a cute refuser? Don't even get me started on the other characters, I can't go there, I literally can't. (I like the name, though, it reminds me of Harry Potter)
  4. The romance. Man, I just love the type of romance that is only in the story for the sake of it. Luna and Gecko have no chemistry. None at all. Though I think that might get better later on. I honestly don't know but I'm not curious enough to keep reading this. 

On a final note, I guess it didn't help that whenever I read Gecko's name this was what came to my mind: 

Cute, huh? Just not in the way he should be. 

Final Rating: 
Where You End by Anna Pellicioli 

This book was by far the worst from the three I've read. I've seen fantasy in Mind Games and could easily imagine people enjoying The Girl from the Well, but Where You End was way too boring and crazy for my taste. 

Meet Miriam whose boyfriend broke up with her not long ago but he's already dating another girl. A normal person might throw a few things in his/her room after a bad break up, not Miriam. She feels as though her whole world ended and destroys a priceless work of art (even though she's an artist as well), at a place where anyone could have seen here, no less. It turns out a girl did see her who, then goes and blackmails Miriam. Sounds exciting right? It's not. 

Even though I constantly fell asleep while reading the book, what made me finally give up on the book was Miriam. I could not relate to her character at all. I could not even see her way of thinking. Frankly, I feel like her character, this crazy and obsessed 16-year-old girl, is way too offensive and not at all a realistic portrayal of a normal teenage girl. I could not connect to her, and honestly, I'm glad for that because I don't want to be anything like her. 

Final Rating: 


  1. Yikes! those are a lot of DNFing but to be honest, they don't sound as something I would enjoy. Still, 3 DNFs are not good and I always try to finish every book I start. Sometimes they surprised me and other times I'm quite angry at the end. But oh well, sadly we can't love all the books

    1. I usually DNF one or two books/ year but the latter two were too horrible for my taste. And I think I was really fed up by the time I picked up The Girl from the Well because as I said, I usually enjoy slow books. I'm sorry it turned out this way because I had huge hopes for it. :(

  2. Wow. What a bad strike you had. Honestly, I had great expectations for The Girl from the Well...on the other hand, I might probably enjoy it even if it's slow...I'm confused now. Thanks. LOL.

    Gecko? For real? I can't even. *doubles up laughing*

    The third one seems...a bit extreme. I'm not surprised you weren't able to finish it.

    I had a good chuckle at you reviews, which is why I'm willing to forgive you for my Girl from the Well confusion ;P.

    1. I think you could enjoy it. For me this was more about being disappointed in many books I've started at the same time I started TGftW. I kind of got into a reading slump and I knew this book will not be the one that gets me out of it, so I gave up on it.

      Yes, Gecko haha. I'm glad you enjoyed my reviews and hopefully you'll love The Girl from the Well if you end up picking it up.

  3. Sorry you didn't enjoy these books, Veronika. It always sucks when you've got to DNF a book because it's just that bad. Recently I've gotten better at DNFing books. Or, maybe because I'm doing that more often, it's that I've gotten worse. I will say, I'm definitely a lot happier when I'm not forcing myself through a book that I'm hating though. (And I am so different than you about DNFing a book, because if I can hit the 50% mark, chances are I'll force myself to finish the book. It's so much easier for me when a book does something unforgivable early on before I invest time and energy into the book.) Hope you've found yourself so really good books since these!

    1. For me it's an improvement that I can put down a book at all. I used to read everything, even the ones that made my head hurt. This doesn't mean that I'll put down every book I hate because I love writing negative reviews haha. When I reach 50% of a book I always have to think of that there's still just as much to read, and then I can give up without feeling bad. I mean if it's not better until halfway, it won't really get better at all. Thanks, Amy, I actually did. :)


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