Chindi and speed-reading

At lunch today, rather than my usual nap, I raced to finish up the exciting ending of Jack McDevitt’s book, Chindi. I really enjoyed the book and I’m looking forward to reading its sequel, Omega. Racing to finish got me thinking about a phenomenon that happens to me quite frequently on books that I really enjoy, and I wonder if it happens to anyone else.

The closer I get to the end, the faster I read.

I’m no speed-reader, but it gets to the point where I get so into the book, and so interested in knowing how the various problems are resolved, that I almost start to skim pages. In fact, I’m certain I did this with Chindi. I raced through the last 20 pages in half an hour or so, which is fast for me. I’m sure I missed some details, and subtleties, but the images in my head of some of the exciting, concluding scenes were detailed nonetheless.

Does this happen to anyone else? Do you get so excited about how a book ends that you literally race through the ending? Or is this just me?

About Jamie Todd Rubin

Jamie Todd Rubin writes fiction and nonfiction for a variety of publications including Analog, Clarkesworld, The Daily Beast, 99U, Daily Science Fiction, Lightspeed, InterGalactic Medicine Show, and several anthologies. He was featured in Lifehacker’s How I Work series. He has been blogging since 2005. By day, he manages software projects and occasionally writes code. He lives in Arlington, Virginia with his wife and three children. Find him on Twitter at @jamietr.