Thursday, June 5, 2008

Booking Through Thursday: TRENDS

Have your book-tastes changed over the years? More fiction? Less? Books that are darker and more serious? Lighter and more frivolous? Challenging? Easy? How-to books over novels? Mysteries over Romance?

You wouldn't think this would be a difficult set of questions to answer, but I'm honestly not sure. If my tastes have changed, it's been subtle differences. Of course, when I was a teenager, I preferred certain things that don't appeal as much now - teen romance novels come to mind. But even then I enjoyed authors like John Grisham, Michael Crichton, Sue Grafton, Ann Rice, and Mary Higgins Clark. But I also enjoyed Shakespeare, Jane Austen, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and other classics.

I do think my tastes have broadened to include more genres. I think perhaps I have more patience for books that don't 'fly' now than I did in my teens. I find I intersperse books that are really fast and action-packed (like The Da Vinci Code and The Bone Collector) with others that may be slower but with perhaps more depth (The Time Traveller's Wife, The Historian, and The Thirteenth Tale, to name a few). It was probably in my mid-twenties when I was really introduced to children's lit as a grown-up. It had never really occurred to me that I might enjoy books written toward young people - I assumed they wouldn't have enough substance to hold my attention, but J.K. Rowling changed my perspective, and I've since found a whole host of authors and books in that genre that I count among my favorites (Cornelia Funke's Inkheart books, anything by Kate Dicamillo, and the Artemis Fowl books, for example). I also got introduced to Nora Roberts around the same time. I had always found Harlequin type romance novels pretty awful - I don't enjoy the love scenes, and the plots were generally inane, if there was a plot at all (perhaps that was more perception than reality, because I don't really know that I'd read too many to make that judgment). But, about 7 or 8 years ago, a friend of mine told me I should read this book (I think it was Sea Swept, but I'm not positive) that she just loved. So, begrudgingly I did. And I was shocked at how much I enjoyed it. So, the plot was completely predictable, and it still had more references to groins that I would've liked, but Roberts' descriptions of the places captivated me. I was there, right along with the characters. So, I read another, and another, and have since read probably 2 dozen or more of her books. Not all of them were wonderfully terrific, but more often than not, I really enjoyed them.

One thing that has stayed fairly consistent, though, is my inability to put down a horrible book. I have done it on a few occasions (I could count them on one hand), but it's always been a struggle for me to leave a book unfinished. It's something I think I should work on, though, because there are just too many fantastic books out there to waste my time on one that's less than mediocre. I've finished far too many books that I shook my head in wonder at why I'd ever picked it up.


Josette said...

Wow, you've certainly read an incredible amount of books! Good for you!

As for the not-so-interesting books, I always try to finish it no matter how dull or sleep-inducing it is. I don't know why but I'll feel like I have not completed something! It's really weird. =)

True, there are so many great books out there just waiting for us to read them! Ah, if only there were more than 24 hours in a day.

Lisa said...

Thanks for the comment on my BTT post! I feel exactly the same about Grisham. I, too don't have many books I haven't finished. I feel such guilt over abandoning a book. I see it from time to time and I feel like its staring at me saying 'Hey! You're not done here!!' lol However I did just finish THE YEAR OF MAGICAL THINKING that I'd started over a year ago(review on my blog) and I regret the hours I lost that I'll never get back!

Melody said...

I've taken a liking in YA and Children's books nowadays... I think more adults are beginning to read them and I think that's a good thing!