I’ve just been thinking about this a lot lately and here’s what I’ve come up with so far.
Schmoes Before Bros: I cannot stand when characters completely abandon friends or loving family members for the sake of pursuing romantic interests. The best books allow characters to be capable of maintaining all kinds of relationships.
Bizarre Love Triangles: Lately I’ve been reading books that claim to have a Love Triangle only for it to become clear that the characters all fail at Fictional Relationship Geometry. There is no point in having a Love Triangle if one of the sides is absolutely unneeded and clearly going to loose out in the end. I will not find it suspenseful, I do not think it adds more tension, and more often than not it ruins the book for me. I would rather believe in or care about a main character’s dilemma then constantly wonder why the other two people don’t just ditch said main character and shack up together elsewhere.
I Done Got Me An Edumacation: Why are so many books terrified of featuring main characters who are also academically-minded? Honestly, it’s not like someone with a degree is magically any more capable than someone who doesn’t have one, so it would be cool for books not to diss people for going or not going to college. I also firmly believe that not all characters have to drop out of high school and work at a Dollar Tree in order to be relatable. Besides, smart people with or without degrees often have to work at crappy jobs.
I’ve Grown Accustomed To Her/His Face: Grumpy people should be able to remain grumpy and alone, darn it. I am so tired of really snarly people loathing someone else only to end up with them for no apparent reason.
Is She/He Really Going Out With Him/Her?: I don’t like lopsided relationships in fiction. If only one character is going to be awesome, that one character should remain single. Why is everyone so scared of single people?
Cradle To Grave: Am I the only person who cringes whenver I read a book where one character is eleventy billion years old and the other character is between sixteen to twenty-one years of age? I just cannot imagine seeing so much history and experiencing so much live and death only to waste time giving one fig about whether or not my underaged significant other got an A in badminton during P. E. class or won the regional spelling bee.
The Wonder Of Men: I prefer supernatural creatures finding other supernatural creatures. Or if not I’d rather the female characters were the more kick-ass of any given couple. In that respect, I really prefer Kresley Cole’s awesome approach of having everyone in her books be supernatural.
Undead Kid On Campus: Could monsters stop going to and or back to high school? Please? It makes sense if the creature in question is actually a teenager or something with an expiration date, but 800 year old vampires or demons from places like ancient Mesopotamia do not need to go to high school. Why would they want to?
I Gotta Fever And The Only Prescription Is More Romance: I love romance, but I don’t always need romance to enjoy a book. Likewise, some books need romance, some books don’t, and some books really, really don’t need romance. But much like cheesey ham in a chicken cordon bleu, somehow romance gets stuffed into virtually every book coming out. Again, why is everyone so scared of single people?
Location, Location, Location: World-building is important. Research is important. Real or imagined worlds need to be believable and they need to be fun to read about. I think it is great to make things up in terms of fiction because that’s sort of the point, but if a setting isn’t well-executed or well thought out, I’m going to get annoyed. And if people are going to write about a real place, they ought to make an effort to learn something factual about that place and its people!
Steampunk’d: I am so tired of so much steampunk being basically the same as anything else with copious amounts of the word “gear,” “airship,” and “hoop skirt” added to a book’s text. I realize that having the fancy bells and whistles is part of the genre’s appeal, but there has to be more to a story than that for me to enjoy it.
That’s all for now. I’ll post about the themes and trends I would love to read more of tomorrow.
In the mean time, what book themes or trends would you like to see less of?