30 April 2013

Top Ten Words or Topics That Instantly Make Me Pick Up A Book

1. 'The' - I don't know what it is about this word but if a book's title begins with 'The', it is that much more likely that I will want to read it. Maybe it's habit after a childhood filled with fairytales and children's books or maybe it's just that, to me, titles stand out more with 'The' in front. 'The' at the beginning of a title is almost like a promise; a seductive tease that the story unfolding in the pages is epic and engrossing. Or maybe I just have issues. Hmmmm.

2. 'Dead'/Death - Amber will read this and laugh because duh, this is me we're talking about. Is your book full of misery, impossibly sad situations and characters who die tragically and/or suddenly? YES GOOD, I WILL READ IT. I am also very fond of both words in book titles, preferably with suitably macabre cover art. I am just very invested in having my heart broken, guys.

3. 'Amber personally recommended it' - This conversation goes like this:

Amber: This book is really weird and disturbing. Here, read it! (actual conversation about Unwind)
Me: ... ... 'Kay.

I'll pretty much read anything she rec's me. It is known. She takes advantage of this to make me read really terrible stuff sometimes :(

4. 'Zombies' - Leading on from the above comments about Death as a theme, it stands to reason that Zombies would be a definite selling point for me. Zombie literature isn't just about horror but can often cover a broad range of themes and genres. Zombies are often used as a metaphor for disease and human disasters, and almost always exist in dystopian novels. Their inclusion in books more often than not lead to philosophical discussions in the text, which is something I really enjoy. I love the discussion of the human condition and Zombie literature does that really well. Most of all I just love the bleak imagery of the dead walking, because it's horrifying, sad and ultimately fascinating. Read The Forest of Hands and Teeth and Warm Bodies, guys.

5. 'Dystopia' - I don't know, I'm just a miserable, cynical person who likes to read about miserable, cynical situations. I think dystopia is some of the most horrifying literature a person could read because the root of the fear in a dystopian novel is the possibility that the future depicted could become a reality.

6. 'Fairytales/Folktales' - Yup, pretty much guarantees I'll be interested, if not obsessively hungry, to read it. I just love all the subversion in fairytales, how authors respond to the traditional archetypes and how they adapt and rewrite stories for contemporary audiences. P.S. Have you read Deathless and/or The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making? Hmmmm? HMMMM?

7. 'Romance' - I'd say I'm not opposed to Romance, in general, but I'd be lying. I do enjoy romance when it's well written and not the ONLY thing that a book focuses on; this basically crosses out a huge list of YA I've read in the past. I don't care about how beautiful a dude is and if you make me read three pages devoted to how good-looking/misunderstood/damaged he is I will most likely develop a deep hatred for your book forever. But I actually do enjoy romance when it flows with the story without becoming insipid and annoying; I get really invested in books which devote time to building up relationships and characters and  making me care about what happens to them. Love triangles need to leave though. Seriously.

8. 'Disturbing' - Self explanatory, I think? Basically, if a book promises to make me stay awake at night I will want to read it. I once read The Amityville Horror and didn't sleep for a week, so.

9. 'Thriller/Mystery' - ALL THE MYSTERIES AND/OR THRILLERS YES GOOD. Although oddly enough I am not a fan of the crime genre. This tends to manifest itself as 'psychological mysteries', 'paranormal mysteries' and 'things that are generally creepy and unsettling'.

10. 'Historical' - I loooooooove Historical novels, from just about any time period. If it's well written and sounds interesting, I'll read it. I have a deep love for novels set during WWI and WWII because it is one of the most brutal, tragic periods of history that so profoundly changed the face of the world. Go and read Outlander by Diana Gabaldon (Amber, this means YOU), Birdsong, Catch 22, Captain Corelli's Mandolin because they're all amazing, okay. And none for Philippa Gregory bye.


  1. Yay for dystopia and fairytales! And I must admit I like a book less if it doesn't have any romance!

    My TTT

  2. I wouldn't even know where to being listing words that draw me to a book. Disturbing and strange would probably be a couple. ;)

    Jenea @ Books Live Forever

  3. Ooooh! I like dystopias and fairytails! :)

  4. Your attraction to the word "The" in the title is really interesting!!

    Haha, I like disturbing stories too. Same with thrillers/mysteries --- but yeah not huge fan of the crime genre either. & YAY historical!

    My Top Ten Tuesday

  5. I love dystopian and fairy-tales too. I tend to like disturbing/thriller/mystery stories as well. It's a bit worrying. I also have a lot of love for historical!

  6. I really like the list <3 Historical, mystery, fairytales, zombies, dystopian, oh yeah! Death and disturbing are two words that make me curious about the book. I sometimes really enjoy something disturbing.. I loved your explanation about 'the' in the title.


  7. A couple of these made me giggle, especially "the." Hah! But...I kinda know what you mean. I'm tired of one-word YA titles, and I almost always like a title better if it starts with "The." Huh. Weird.

    And "dystopia" actually makes me NOT want to read the book. I'm so, so over that genre. But sci-fi on the other hand, I'm all over that. Bring on the spaceships!!!

  8. Oh my gosh YES (re: Unwind). Have you read Unwholly yet? And UGH TFOHAT was so so so sad (I went into that not knowing it was about zombies... imagine my reaction... and yet... I couldn't stop reading!) Re: thrillers/horrors... can't get myself to read those yet. And historical? YES. Loving those more and more every day!

  9. You've hit on quite a few of my favourite topics to read about in books! I'm really loving zombies, fairy tales, and mystery thrillers at the moment! Now I just need to find a book that combine all three of those things...

  10. I think it's so fun that you pick up books because they start with "The". And I love that you mention death, because that's something I really like in books too. Plus, I need to read The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland because it sounds GOOD.


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