Our class is currently reading two books, “As I Lay Dying” by William Falkner and “The Great Gatsby” by F. S. Fitzgerald, at the same time. Of course, it is not an easy task to read two different books that are not related in plots or characters. There are some positive and negative things about this complicated reading schedule.
The worst thing about reading two books at the same time is remembering the characters. I always have trouble remembering the name of the characters; after I finish a book, I would remember the whole detailed plot, but not the characters’ name. When I have trouble remembering one book’s characters, two books are too much. There are more than ten characters to remember and they are all mixed up in my head. I am glad there aren’t any same names seen in both novels, but the names are still the hardest thing for me to remember.
Another disadvantage is that the two stories distract each other. The two completely different stories are getting mixed in my head and now I don’t understand either of the stories very well. I personally feel better reading deeply into one book and thinking it over after it is over, but reading two books break my concentration on one book and distract me to the second story. It can be compared to playing game and watching TV at the same time. They both require a certain amount of concentration, so when they are done together, it is likely that you will die more easily in the game if you are watching TV at the same time. If you are reading two books together, you might loose track of one book, or concentrate on one book more than the other. Also as a person, you can like one book more than the other, so the other book you are reading with might seem worse than it really is because it is being compared to a good book that you are actually enjoying.
I was trying to be positive and think of a good thing about reading two books at the same time. One thing I finally came up with is that I can compare the two different books as I read them. People may forget what the first story was about while reading the second book, so reading them at the same time lessens the possibility of forgetting the stories.
If I could choose whether I want to read two complicated books at the same time, I would definitely choose not to, but since we are reading two books, I am trying to think positive and concentrate on understanding both novels well. But I wish that whoever is taking this class next year would not have to go through the process of trying to fit in two books into your head at the same time. Watching two movies at the same time will make that person seem like a weird and unusual person, and I think it is the same for books.