Recently, book genres have been really bugging me.
I’m pretty sure everyone out there is about to pour melted ice cream on me which will be very sticky and messy just like my touchpad at the moment. So, to save you the trouble, just eat that ice cream and read on. I don’t entirely hate genres…there’s just something that has been constantly nagging me lately and would love to hear what you guys think.
According to google…
A style or category of art, music, or literature.
To give you a better idea here are some categories books are sorted into.
- Science fiction.
- Historical Fiction
- Fantasy (I LOVE IT)
- Magical Realism
- They help you decide what you want to read. As a bookworm, you have to find your types of books. This can be one genre or more or even all of them but you know what you want to read when you know what genres make you feel a certain way
- They bring people together. When you see someone else who loves fantasy, you immediately connect and gush and all the fangirl worthy moments
- It’s easier to recommend. When you know someone likes historical fiction then you can easily pile up a list of books that fit into that genre to help a fellow reader out
- They help to organise. You might have your bookshelf arranged this way or have a competition that relies on your favourite genre for people. It helps everything to be a little easier and splits up MG and YA for age groups so everything is a whole lot easier.
- It’s part of your bookworm identity! The genres you love are YOURS and you can protect them just like books! If you like dark fantasy, people know you are stabby and awesome. The same goes for any genre. It helps people get to know you better!
So hey…there are quite a few reasons why genres are awesome beans that deserve appreciation, right? But let’s talk about the thing that is nagging me.
Genres put people off. When a book is classified as ‘historical fiction’, people who’ve had a bad experience with 2 books of historical fiction immediately back away. After all, you did not like the previous books in that genre…why would you like this book? And so, you NEVER read that book just because of that experience because why would you waste your time on a book you KNOW you’re not going to like? #logic
But this is the problem. Why are we CONFINING BOOKS TO A LABEL? A freakin’ LABEL, category, box, WHATEVER! We bookworms KNOW books are just MORE than ‘fantasy’.
Books fall into so many categories, not just one, so why do we never give genres another chance?
As soon as we don’t like 1 or more books in that genre, we lose all hope. We make it a fact ‘Oh, i don’t really enjoy romance books’. but have you read every romance book this world has to offer? NO, my dear pineapple, you have not read every romance book.
And let’s not forget, genres come with stereotypes. People always think contemporaries are super sweet but they can be really sad and stabby too. And people always think Fantasy include dragons and sadly it actually doesn’t. So even if you haven’t read fantasy books, those stereotypes that come to mind when thinking of a genre, can also push people away.
I understand that you have a massive TBR and once you’ve got a bad impression of an author or genre, it’s game over. But books VARY so much! A historical fiction book can be completely different to another HF book. You might be missing out on what could be your favourite book of all time.
There’s a famous saying among the bookworm race that goes along the lines of ‘If you don’t like reading, you haven’t found the right book’ and I think this is 100% applies to genres as well. ‘If you don’t like X genre, you haven’t found the right book’.
I believe that ALL books deserve a chance. You should never have books which you say ‘i’m never going to EVEN TRY that book’ because you haven’t read it. Unless the book is 1)problematic 2) you didn’t like the 1st book in the series then I think it’s silly and wrong.
Now look if you KEEP on trying fluffy contemporary again and again and you realise YOU HONESTLY don’t like it, I get why you would not want to read books classified as that. You shouldn’t feel guilty about NOT liking a genre, you shouldn’t genre shame either. But fluffy contemporaries is QUITE specific. Contemporaries are not. You don’t like the feels of Epic fantasy.S URE. But still, give fantasy a shot.
I just feel like SOME BOOKS IN GENRES are amazing and when you recommend them to people, they say ‘Oh.I don’t really like X genre’ or ‘books with X, Y and Z’. I loved The Kite Runner but hey ‘it’s historical fiction’ people aren’t going to read it. I loved The Hobbit but hey ‘it’s got weird creatures and it’s not YA’. And they never read the specific book even though you’re 99% sure they’ll love a book in that genre.
But should you give genres another chance? Now you’ve read this..you’re still split between in your thoughts. Here are some pros of cons of giving X Book Genre another chance.
- It can give you an amazing surprise! You might end with a new favourite book. So, you give this genre another shot even with bad experiences and OMG you officially love this book and it’s your life and you wonder how lived without it.
- You start to like that genre. That book completely changes your mind and suddenly you’re reading everything in that genre and It’S AMAZING and new-found-love right here!!!
- You get out of your comfort zone. Readers like comfort but stepping out of it can be great
- One book in that genre doesn’t represent the whole genre. You might have gotten unlucky with one book and end up finding you actually love that genre.
- You WANT to hate it. Since you didn’t like another book in that genre, you’re basically waiting for all the bad stuff to roll in. And so basically you automatically let the cons outweigh the pros and HEY YOU HATE THE BOOK.(secretly pumps fists)
- You are more likely to hate it, to be honest. Maybe that genre is honestly not just you and you’ve basically let your TBR win and now wallowing in your sadness at how broke you are and the time that has just disappeared.
- You can try out a new book you KNOW you’ll like. Why try out a fantasy book when you 100% know that you’re more likely to enjoy a sci-fi? You have previous proof that X genre isn’t your thing so GO WITH THE FACTS? this is logical.
- genres don’t define books
- give all books a chance
- some specific books like ‘fluffy contemporaries’ aren’t your thing – THIS IS OKAY
- You want to read book YOU KNOW you’ll love, right?
- BUT STEP OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE
- So give genres a chance.
- You can be surprised in a good or bad way
#GENRE EQUALITY here! Um…thank you. That’s all I want to say!
Do you give genres another chance? Do genres put you off reading some books? Do you believe in #GENRE EQUALITY? First impressions of a genre can be SO MISLEADING, right? AND genres DON’T DEFINE BOOKS! What do you think? Feed me your thoughts, I’m hungry.