Monday, September 30, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday - Book Turnoffs

Every Tuesday the ladies over at The Broke and the Bookish host a book related Top 10 theme. 

You know that moments when you are reading a book - and possibly loving it - and then something happens and you throw it across the room? 
Or continue reading hoping to move past whatever that something was only to be disappointed?  These are my top ten of those "somethings".
1.      Power grabs – I get exhausted just thinking of all the scheming that went on in The Other Boleyn Girl.  My own life tires me out enough – I use books to recharge.
2.      Too many misunderstandings – If every character is acting out of some misunderstanding, cough “The Kitchen House” cough, it feels contrived to me.
3.      Too be continued…  - In my opinion book 1 should never end in a cliffhanger. I don’t mind loose ends or not knowing all the details, but if book one ends with a major cliff hanger I feel like the author doesn’t trust their own writing to be compelling enough for me to continue reading.  As a result I don’t trust them to continue writing a story I care about. When I think of the most successful series, the first book can stand alone if it needs too: Harry Potter, The Hunger Games, Divergent, Twilight.  Examples of books where a cliffhanger made me not want to read the sequel(s): Uglies/Pretties, Pure, Daughter of Smoke and Bone
4.      Multiple person narrative in first person – It’s just confusing.  I don’t notice when you put the chapter narrorator’s name at the top of the chapter, so I’ll start the chapter in the mindset of the previous narrator and get confused a couple pages in and have to go back.
5.      Language that tries too hard
    1. Overly flowery (Purple Prose)
    2. Attempts to create futuristic teen slang
6.      Wilting flower heroines / controlling male love interests – Twilight, the gift that keeps on giving.
7.      Absentee Parents/Demonizing parents –The YA trend of absentee parents is bad enough, but certain authors make a habit of demonizing parents. I’m aware that parents aren’t always right and teenagers are figuring out who they are separate from their parents. But I find it incredibly frustrating when books portray all the parents as selfish and uncaring.
8.      Wilting flower heroines / controlling male love interests – Twilight, the gift that keeps on giving.

  1. Under explained dystopia I am totally ok with leaving some elements of “how they got here” to sequels, but if the author leaves too many holes to be filled in during subsequent books I fear they won’t fill them all in and I’ll be left with questions once the series is over or that they’ll don’t know how to fill those holes and will haphazardly fill them in the final book in a way that doesn’t make sense.
  2. Lack of punctuation – I don’t care that they did it on purpose and that there’s a reason for it. “Evening” and “The Road” were just hard to read because of it. I won’t read another book that does this regardless of how well reviewed it is.

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