It's been awhile since we just talked about stuff. I'm now setting aside at least one day of the month to ramble at you and hope you ramble back!
Fall is probably my favorite season, because it means sweater weather, crackling fires, and brilliant sunshine interspersed with cozy rainy days where the best thing is curling up under blankets on the couch with a good story to read or listen to, along with great big mugs of cocoa or tea.
To prepare for those good days, I went over to the local bookstore and browsed the other day. I try to read mostly electronically because my place is relatively small and I have too many paper books as it is. But sometimes I like the limited choices of the bookstore and the feel of real paper in my hands.
I was thinking as I was browsing the shelves and looking at the pretty covers in the fantasy and science fiction section what it was about any book that first drew me to it.
In a bookstore where you're seeing books spine out, its the title really that would draw me in. That title has to elicit some intrigue for me. The cooler the title, the more likely I am to pull it off the shelf to take a closer look. Words like "dragon" or "lost" or "dark" or "crown" or "fire and ice" always call to me.
The cover then is the next thing that has to speak to me.
If its fantasy, it's got to have certain elements that intrigue me like an elven warrior on the cover in fantastic clothes in a deep wood, or a human in armor with a mythical beast, or a party of adventurers heading towards a distance fabulous city. I want to feel what the adventure is going to be about from that image and want to either join the person or people on the cover or be them. In science fiction, visions of fabulous cities
if on other planets always draws me in, or if more cyberpunk the neon drenched cities of the future that look lived in and dangerous. I want to feel I'm leaving our world entirely. I want to just drown in this other place, feel I could be there, and forget everything else.
And, finally, it's the blurb that gets me. It's not that the blurb has to be well-written (though yeah, that's a good sign) but more than it has to have those almost buzz words for me. I picked up a novel called Stiletto (cool title yeah?) with a very clean image of a knife carving down the page. But it was the descriptors in it that really got me: secret societies, supernatural creatures, bizarre attacks, London, and otherworldly that had me purchasing it (I didn't even see that it was book 2... until now).
So what draws you into a story (and no, you don't have to talk about mine!)? What are your criteria? What's your catnip for picking one up and putting another down? Anything good you're reading, listening to or watching that you want to share? Put it in the comments! As book reading season is upon many of us, I'm sure people would love recommendations! I know I would!
I've totally read the last chapter a few times and then started at the beginning!
I admit that I write what I want to read. It's definitely gotten better for those of us who like m/m supernatural but what I'm seeing on Amazon (and I understand why this is happening with authors and I will write about this too) are books that feel like outlines. I think because people are feeding the beast of the algos to keep themselves visible. But I am so happy that there are authors out there that know that vampires are ever green and that m/m is awesome.
Thank you so much for your kind words and recs! I am just watching a youtube video about how using the word "gay" definitely gets you demonitized and a lot of other things, which means word of mouth for us is huge.
The end. Unlike many other people, I love spoilers. It's what gets me to read books. So I read the last chapter. If I read it and a million questions pop into my mind, it means that I will finish the book. If I don't get that response, I put it back because I'm guaranteed to get bored and/or annoyed and it'll be a waste of time and money.