#284 When the chapters in the book you’re reading are really short

Have you seen Twins?

Yes, before The Governator governed he played Danny DeVito’s book-smart-street-stupid long lost brother in this classic screwball comedy. The story goes that The Terminator stole all the brains and muscles in the womb which turned him into a Superman but left poor Danny with only the throwaway genes left over.

Now I know it’s just a movie but there’s a classic scene where Danny is swerving a car through downtown streets while Arnie flips through the manual in the passenger seat. He’s literally fast-flipping page after page after page like he’s peeling through a phone book when DeVito turns to him and says “What’re you doing?”

To which Arnold responds “Learning to drive.”

And come on, don’t short chapters help us all feel a little like Arnold Schwarzenegger in Twins? Honestly, when you’re flipping pages fast, cracking that spine hard, and blazing through the book so quickly… well, it sure feels good, it sure feels great, and it sure feels a lot like


Photo from: here

50 thoughts on “#284 When the chapters in the book you’re reading are really short

  1. Haha, I love short chapters. They are helpful if you want to read some of your favourite book but only have a little bit of time.

  2. I especially love people’s reactions to your reading skills.
    “You read the entire Hunger Games series in a weekend?” Uh ya, it’s not exactly a hard read. But the fact that everyone around you is impressed makes you feel super Awesome

      1. Can someone who has read the entire Hunger Game series, as well as the full Twilight series let me know how they compare, if at all?

        For example, as a hypothetical – if you have a wife who devoured the four Twilight novels like they were the last books on earth.. would she also want to read Hunger Games?

        1. I read both, Freddo (btw, I learned that your name means “cold” as in, food that is not warmed up, in Italian).

          IMO, Hunger Games is much better written and has a lot more depth of content. There is a love triangle, but it’s less “Trashy-Romantic”. I would recommend HG to anyone just because it is really good, not because it is a guilty pleasure like Twilight was.
          So I think she would like it, too. But probably for different reasons.

          1. Freddo’s not warmed up….

            Hunger Games sounds like something I would like to read. I was a fan of the Twilight series and I’ve been looking for another good series to dig my teeth into.

            1. Yeah – but just let me get going.. before long, I’ll be a semi-Freddo.. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Semifreddo)

              Interesting take on Hunger Games.. Is it scary? The threshold for anything scary is exceedingly low with my wife.. to put things in perspective, there are parts of Disney cartoons that need to be classified NSFJ (not safe for Jen (aka: my wife))..

              So, if I’m assured that it’s not too scary, I might just go ahead and make a stealth Amazon purchase.. :)

              1. Geektween read it and was not scared, but then she’s always had tastes a little on the dark side. (they have cookies, after all).

              2. OMG. Semifreddo! Lucky you — I’m pretty sure you’re the only name around here that can have semi- attached to the front and make something almost as awesome as you are! Semilaura … no. Semibekah … never heard such a thing. Semijdurley … wait, what?! Semifreddo … delicious-looking dessert. You win!

        2. I love both books sooo much! In my opinion Hunger Games is more like Harry Potter than Twilight. Hunger Games is more action based with a romance onthe side while Twilight is mostly romance with action on the side! She should like them though!

  3. 3rd one !!! its only 11 here!!!!! and yes im a nerd !!!! (not even remotley dorky)

    Thats all i have to say for the day.

    Well See ya :))))))))))))))))

            1. Yo Jesus I thought Jesus was smart. This website is called 1000 awesome things for a reason. If it was for not awesome things it would be called 1000 not awesome things.
              Jesus christ your dumb.

  4. As a twin I’m not sure how I feel about that movie. We’re both pretty smart. Me, I was in the top 10 percent of my class even though all I did was ski and snowboard. ;)

    1. Getting ready to finish my graduate degree in a few weeks and in my opinion, textbooks do NOT have nearly enough pictures. My ethics book had no pictures and the chapters were stupidly long! Journal articles have more pictures, but they’re the way boring kind which involve graphs and charts with indecipherable statistics. I’m ready for another read through the book of awesome with its short chapters and great pics!

      1. I hear that. I hated most my grad school textbooks for all the reasons you mentioned. Congrats on almost finishing your graduate degree! It’s a good feeling :D

      2. My grad school texts have lots of pictures, but also a lot of boring graphs and tables. I have to start studying for my comprehensive exams next month, so I’ll get to re-read them all :/

  5. Even if there are MORE chapters, if I am hitting them more often, I feel like I am accomplishing more. Guess I just need that reinforcement. Plus, I like to have those “stopping points”.

  6. You know whats super awesome? When the chapters in the *Text*book your reading are super short. Cause nothing really made my day more than realizing that homework I thought was going to take me 3 hours, only took me 1 :)

    1. Short textbook chapters are definitely awesome, because textbooks are generally among the worst genre of reading in existence. It was always so exciting to get down to business and realize it was gonna be a short homeworking session that night!

  7. I hate to close a book in the middle of a chapter. Usually if I’m short on time and the next chapter is just a bit long, I won’t read it until next time. I love short chapters!

      1. The geektween likes to read at any opportunity, and whenever I try to get her to do anything, it’s always “I’ll do it at the end of this chapter!” But then she invariably “forgets” and starts the next chapter… and so on, and so on, and so on…

        1. ha!

          This is just like me playing video games and needing to get to “save points”.. My wife will do a lot of: “Hey, weren’t you going to do [insert chore that I’ve been putting off for weeks] sometime today??” after I’ve been playing video games for a few hours..

          To which I’ll inevitably respond.. “Sure, yeah.. definitely.. just let me get to this next save point”..

          *fast forward another hour or two*

          “Oh yeah – I forgot at the last few.. so just let me get to this next one…”

          1. That is exactly what hubby does, too. Except its not a chore that I want him to do, its usually going to bed at a decent time so I don’t have to drag his butt out of bed in the morning to go to work.

            PS…I just now pre-ordered my Book of Even More Awesome and the Awesome calendar for 2012

        2. It’s a classic move … sometimes it’s really an accident, but .. ya know .. sounds like the geektween’s got the method down to an art ;)

  8. So when I first started scanning this post, I caught “The Governator” and “Danny DeVito” and my mind automatically went to a movie that I got sucked into watching a few years ago called Junior (where Ahhhhnold and DeVito work together as scientists researching fertility and, in short, Schwarzenegger carries a baby in his stomach). And then I stopped reading in order to ponder how that movie was in any way related to short chapters. And then I felt really dumb because that’s totally the wrong movie.

    Breezing through chapters at warp speed gives you such a sense of accomplishment. I love when books are made up of lots of short chapters. You’ve been reading for ten minutes and are on chapter eight! :)

    1. Haha, that’s actually my problem with short chapters sometimes – I breeze through them and don’t really pay attention to what I’m reading. Then randomly I will find myself thinking, “Wait, why is he stuck in an elevator with a clown and dead fish?” So I have to go back a little and all the time saved by breezing through is gone. -sadface-

      1. A clown AND a dead fish??

        Clearly I’ve been reading the wrong books, and I want to be reading more of whatever Vanessa is reading..

  9. I never read the short chapters for my history text book…hahaha
    im kinda crazy when im read,,,i hate history..

  10. The ULTIMATE short chaper books are all those Dan Brown books like “The DaVinci Code”.. but he takes the traditional “short chapter” strategy, and one-ups it by making sure that EVERY chapter ends on a cliff-hanger..

    I mean, I’m all for suspense, but when you have over 100 chapters in your book and each one ends on a cliffhanger, you might be going a little overboard.. :)

    1. Yes! I was thinking of him when I read this, too. He guarantees that all us “I’ll do it right after this chapter!” types never actually accomplish anything until the book is finished.

  11. I’m reading “A Spot of Bother” by Mark Haddon right now, and it has delightfully short chapters, which was perfect for a vacation book. There are various plot threads, so the chapters usually pop back and forth between them.

  12. Lol reminds me of the book Ruby Holler or Crispin: the cross of lead. They had like 60 chapters each.

  13. I love short chapters, but the bad thing is that they make it hard to put the book down and I read until 3:30 in the morning.

  14. Someday I will have time to read for fun again, and I’m going to enjoy every chapter, no matter what the length!

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