We all have facts about books we don’t like to admit to ourselves. Here are a selection of mine. 😉
1. I judge books by their covers. Don’t we all! The best covers, to me, are those that take directly from the prose with a scene. Some are more subtle – I read a reveal post recently where I thought the sweet romance novel cover was just a generic embrace-in-snowy-weather cover, but the author then went on to say that it was a scene from the book. Nevertheless, I think covers, especially YA and commercial fiction, should stray from the typical and delve further into symbolism. After all, people on a cover say very little about a book except for possibly its era/setting, but elements and marks can hint about the plot without revealing too much.
2. Annoyingly for the rest of you, the protagonists to which I relate the most are white and middle-class. Also anybody with a less-than-conventional family/home-life. No white picket fences or nuclear shapes for me. Not because those are what I am… Well, maybe. But I guess it’s easier to read characters who aren’t so rough, just like I prefer to hold conversations that are not peppered with bad language.
3. I will read most genres, but the thought of a dystopian simply bores me. I have no idea why. Perhaps because apocalypse and zombies and end-of-the-world has never sparked any excitement in me. I’m not sorry.
4. I despise trends. We should all be able to read what we want, and not have to jump onto the next bandwagon simply because it features elements from the latest bestseller. This is one of my worries about Steampunk – how ‘mainstream’ it is getting. One of my reasons for loving Steampunk is because it’s a niche into which I can curl; now elements are spreading into general Fantasy YA, readers are dismissing it, and proper Steam-Punks are becoming offended.
5. I like to review, but I don’t like the effort of a review. Now, I’m not one of those who drops a rating and runs. That’s impolite. But sometimes I just want to hold up my head and say “I dis/liked this book because the characters stood out/the pacing was superb/the prose was, you know, my kind of prose.” End.
6. I have to really love a series to read on. A lot of the time, I experience a book, come out with the reaction “yeah, I like it. 4 stars,” but then see that the second book is coming out and sigh to myself. I liked it, but am I willing to invest time, energy and acquaintances in another round with these characters?
7. Very few characters stay with me. I don’t have OTP from reading. Dramione FTW! But even that’s a musical, not from the books. (But you gotta admit there’s some underlying tension between those two. What about Luna-Lupin? They’d make a good couple, and, tbh, I was never convinced by Tonks’ affections for Remus. It just was…rushed.) *cough* I don’t know why, but I have to rely on connecting with the scenery of books before I can connect on a personal level. If anything, author-made couples are the characters to which I respond the most.
8. A lot of films I saw before I read the book. In fact, that was how I started Harry Potter. The film was cool and little!me decided it was worth picking up the series. I can’t think of others from the top of my head, but big series I don’t tend to read first. See #4 and #6.
9. I don’t read enough. Simple fact and one that affects many of us. With my life of education and writing, I don’t fold into reading as much as I’d love to. I get new books too often, too, so that I forget to finish the ones I’ve got as I start new ones.
10. I take ages to read books sometimes, but I’ve only ever DNF-ed a single book deliberately. It was MG contemporary, and simply too dull. I couldn’t relate to the characters and the plot didn’t interest me. Which is sad, because I really ought to be able to slip into any book and carry it on, regardless of whether my interest is held or not. After all, I am notoriously hard to please when it comes to reading.
What about you? Any bookish habits or confessions about the way you read?