Consider the expression,

The book was so engaging that I could not put it down, and read it one sitting.

I am looking for a phrase, just opposite of this.

The book was so boring that it took me various installment to finish it.

I am looking for a word/phrase which has the opposite meaning to "one sitting", in the context of book reading among other thing.

Installment is a placeholder here, what word could be used to convey the same meaning.

3 Answers 3


The most obvious one would be:

The book was so boring that it took me several sittings to finish it.


We could consider

The book was so boring that it took me several sessions just to finish it.

We could also consider

The book was so boring that I had to read it "in stages"/ "little by little"/ "progressively" before finally finishing it.

Power Thesaurus


Not every stock phrase has a stock phrase with a contrary meaning. In this case, it is literally impossible: no number is the “opposite” of one because there are an infinite number of numbers that each differ from one in multiple ways.

Despite appearances, communicating is not solely the art of stringing together stock phrases and their stock contraries.

The diligent or desperate may be able to read this tepid book in fewer than my thirty seven sittings

is one possible way to play off the stock phrase “in one sitting” in an opposite sense and suggest that the speaker found the book boring.

  • I did not mean opposite in the literal manner. I was looking for words such as stages/sessions, as mentioned below. I though my example sentence, conveyed it in a clear manner.
    – Max
    May 27, 2022 at 13:18

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