While I was reading the Guardian Unlimited article, "The great unread: DBC Pierre, Harry Potter...oh yes, and David Blunkett," and I was immediately reminded of a story the boss told me about our old mall manager. One day he walks in and asks for the newest, hottest business title.
No prob, we had it. Yay, goooo booksellers!
As the boss rang him up, she did the usual patter--very popular book, written up in the NY Times, yadda yadda--only to have him tell her point blank, "Really, that's good to know, but I don't plan on reading it."
Turns out he was just buying it to impress someone by leaving it out on the table. To look smart by proximity.
No wonder this Guardian article makes total sense to me, but I don't think that's the only reason people don't read certain titles they bought. There are also those novels that you start but don't finish right away, or those ones you buy for that long off possible snow storm.
But please take the article as your journalistic absolution and share with us the books you just could not bring yourself to read. At least not yet.
Here are my offerings:
Lads by Dave Itzkoff (started but did not finish)
Fallen by T. Jefferson Parker (started but did not finish)
Joker by Ranulfo (haven't started, but plan to at some point)
Anna Karenina by Tolstoy (maybe someday)