An innocent question we are often asked. Well, the layman version is “What kind of books do you read” and I have to answer that at every family gathering.
There is no right or wrong answer. We’re allowed to enjoy several genres, even ALL genres if we want to! Why not? No one will smack your head with an encyclopedia if you cross an invisible line and pick a book they don’t expect you to.
But I did notice that the more I read, the pickier I become. When I started blogging, I would say “Oh, I love crime stories, but nothing too gruesome.” Fair enough. Since then, I learned a lot about my reading habits and genres.
I can now proudly say I cannot resist a psychological thriller, that the suspected husband trope is my downfall, and that I would give all my chocolate bars for a well-executed police investigation or my collection of socks for an unreliable character to root for.I look for details that make a good book an excellent one, I swear and I get frustrated when my expectations aren’t met. Books taught me a lot about myself, what I can take, and what I’d better stay away from. I believe this is the difference between a casual reader and the devourers of books that we are. Our brains get trained to look for certain things, our nails accept the fact they will be bitten because of a chilling story, our eyes learn to fly over the pages. We just grow with every story.
But I refuse to be put in a box!
I call this freedom. And we are free to open up to the entire world. Or worlds. Assuming your favorite genre doesn’t put you in said genre’s jail.
Because despite my unconditional love for women in terrible situations or hard-boiled detectives, I can also appreciate different dishes and learn to enjoy other things. Battles (when they are not too long!) cheesy moments, meetings with fae, the making of viruses. It usually requires a little more effort on my part to get into those stories, but stepping out of your comfort zone can be so rewarding. I have learned about and from fairy tales, magic realism, coming of ages stories. I must admit they also are very welcome after a row of very very heavy and dark stories!
I say yes to favorite genres and no to limitations! I say yes to readers making the jump to try new things! Go out there, pick that book (no, not Lolita, it’s not worth it!)
The world is gigantic and your next adventure is waiting. Maybe try a different shelf! 😉
This was a (useless) message from the Bookish Organization of Donna shared with you after a
terrible fight interesting discussion about the importance of opening our minds to different genres, cultures, countries, and authors.
Where’s your comfort zone? Do you dare step out of it?