On Book Genres.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

To me, personally, a genre can make or break a book for me. While I'm very open-minded when it comes to choosing books to read -- and will try to read anything at least once -- I have to admit, I do have my favorites. And also.. my, well.. not-so-favorites.

If you look at my list of books I read in 2008 and 2009, you can see that most of the ones I devoured fell into the General Fiction genre. Some may call it Contemporary Literature and/or Literary Fiction. (Is there even a difference? Let me know!) I was obsessed with it, and I barely read anything else. This year, it's quite evident that I am reading mostly YA novels. Again, it's as if I can not get enough of it! I read one YA book after another. It's almost like a craving I just can not stop. Both genres are pretty much similar, except that the characters are different in age. If you ask me to pick between them, well, I just love both, and are my top 2 favorite genres so I simply can not choose!

I do like to mix in a bit of the Fantasy/Paranormal aspect. Harry Potter, LOTR, Fablehaven, Eragon, His Dark Materials? Wizards, vampires, faeries, imps.. I do love some out-of-this-world stories and characters that are able to take me somewhere that I've never been when I read. I mean, who doesn't?

Aside from those, I am particularly fond of the Classics. Usually, it's what gets me out of a reading slump when I'm in one, and what immediately puts me back in a good mood when I'm in a bad one. To be honest, I don't even think I'll be a reader if it wasn't at all for this particular genre. They're simply timeless, and it doesn't matter when you read it, to me, they're always going to be relevant.

One that I am secretly obsessed with are Mystery Thrillers. If it's mixed with a bit of Medical or Crime Thriller in there, I'm hooked! My favorite authors in this one would have to be Tess Gerritsen, Michael Connelly, and John Grisham. I'm probably missing out on some others, as I don't know much about mysteries to be frank, so if you have any recommendations, please feel free to let me know about them!

While I don't read much chick lit, I do recommend The Shopaholic series by Sophie Kinsella! They're just very light, fun, and entertaining reads. Yeah, I find the main character annoying sometimes -- as I am just NOT that shopping-crazy!! -- but it's a hilarious and fun "beach read" nonetheless, and I do want my books to be that way sometimes.

Book genres I've tried and actually really liked, but had not much luck with would be Sci-fi, Romance, and Horror. To be fair, I haven't had luck with Horror novels simply because I'm the biggest chicken around here! I did like Ender's Game, and I do like me some Black Dagger Brotherhood, but haven't picked up any that I liked much since. Any suggestions?

Now as for my least favorite genres. I've tried them all at least once or twice -- and obviously hated it -- so I just decided that it was best for me to leave them all alone in the end. Oh.. Self-help, Christian, Erotica, and Western novels.. um.. they're just not for me. Plain and simple.

How about you? What are your favorite genres? Least favorite ones? And if you could recommend a book/s in each genre, what would they be? I do love discovering new reads so book and author suggestions and recommendations are very much welcome! Looking forward to hearing from you.. happy weekend and as always, happy reading!


  1. My favourite genres are travelogues and mysteries, but I also read a fair number of memoirs, history, romances and fantasy books. Classics are a very solid presence and I like to read modern literary fiction as well, but I will throw any book at the wall with great force if it turns out to be dreary or pretentious (always a risk woth literary fiction). There are no genres I actively avoid, but I don't seek out porn, westerns, self-help books and science books. Oh, wait, I take that back: I absolutely will not read misery memoirs.

  2. My favorite genre would have to be General Fiction and Young Adult too. And yeah they're both very similar except for the character's ages. Genres I just hate would be self-help books too. I just can't get into that thing!

  3. Bibliophile - I have actually never read a travelogue before, but it sure sounds interesting. What do you recommend? And yes, I believe "solid presence" was what I was looking for when trying to describe the Classics as well.

    May - Haha, self-help books are just TOO much for me. I don't like reading about someone telling me what to do, what to think, stuff like that.

  4. I'm with you--I'll try anything genre-wise once or twice! I pretty much read from all genres. I read mostly general fiction, YA, travelogues (I'm OBSESSED) and classics. I have started trying Fantasy as I used to not really read it. I don't really read much Chick Lit but I'm not opposed to it! I'm really not into like Harlequin Romance novels and that. I guess I just can't get over the covers. They make me laugh.

  5. Jamie - I have actually never read a travelogue before! Do you have any specific book recommendation because I'd love to try one out! I am obsessed with travel blogs and travel shows.. if that counts. I don't read much Chick Lit at all, except for The Shopaholic series.

  6. Ahh I'm obsessed with travel blogs and shows too! Jillian--we need to be living on the same coast because we have so many of the same interests!

    I really enjoy Bill Bryson. I've done reviews on my blog of 360 Degrees Longitude ( a family traveling for a year) and Travels with Charley by Steinbeck. I just got another travelogue recently but I haven't read it! It sounds hilarious and like it would be right up my alley. I'll have to let you know when I read it! But yeah, if you go on the blog and look under the label "travelogue" or "travel" you'll find them. Oh, and I personally liked Eat, Pray, Love but some people didn't!

  7. Seriously! Are you planning to go to BEA next year at all? I'm dreaming about going, and hoping I can!

    I'll check some out of those you reviewed from the library when I go next week.. :)

  8. If you like mystery/thrillers, I recommend Harlan Coben and Chelsea Cain. I've recently read their books and really enjoyed them!