So my last post was all glass-half-empty about the stuff that’s a dealbreaker for me. So for this one, I figured I’d take the other tack, and I started thinking about the stuff that makes me automatically go, “I’m in!”
5. Unrequited or impossible love
I am such a sucker for this business. I’ve slogged through many a book (and some series of books) that wouldn’t otherwise do much for me, except I get caught up in the love story. Confession: sometimes when a movie gets like 15% on Rotten Tomatoes, I end up loving it. The key: heartbreak (as long as it’s eventually followed by a happy ending. I’m a sucker for those too.)
Speaking of suckers, I'm sort of over it now, but back in the day, I was all about anything vampire. My favorite movie when I was young was always The Lost Boys. I devoured all of Ann Rice’s books. When Twilight came along I was so in (it also had #5 in spades). I read the first few books in Melissa de la Cruz’s Blue Bloods series (although I’m still not entirely sure they were vampires?)
Go to a bookstore today, though, and you could get buried in vamp books. A quick search on Amazon yields the titles of a bazillion vampire series—too many to keep up with, and some, I suspect, may involve unintentional comedy:
Vampires Realm Romance
Vampire for Hire
Bonded by Blood Vampire Chronicles
I even found a book called Vampire for Christmas. I kind of want to read that one, not gonna lie.
3. Free and/or reasonably priced snacks
This one has nothing to do with books (although I do like to snack while reading. But here's the thing: I love to eat. Love. When my best friend wrote a novel with a me-inspired character, that character’s defining trait was that she was hungry all the time. Free food is great, of course. But you’ve also got to love half-price appetizers, like those delicious little steak kabobs at Ruth’s Chris. Ask anyone who knows me. As long as there's food, I’m in.
2. Genre mashing
I think I loved Lost Boys so much back in the day not just because of the vamps, but because it was the perfect blend of horror, comedy, and romance. Later, Buffy the Vampire Slayer blended the same three genres and became the most important show of my life. And my dear departed Firefly was a space western. I really love all the genres, but I love them even more mixed together. The only exception so far was Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, which I wanted to love very badly. I just loved the original too much to accept the adulterated version. Now, if anyone’s looking to add some zombies or demons to, say Ulysses or The Sound and the Fury—have at it.
I don’t mean Dr. Frankenstein’s type of deal: I love language experiments. Jennifer Egan’s Power Point chapter in A Visit from the Goon Squad. Don Winslow’s acronyms and two-word chapters in Savages. Raymond Queneau’s Exercises in Style. If the author is messing around with form or style, I’m totally in. Proving once and for all that although I may enjoy reading about or watching glamorous vampires or the folks who slay them, deep down I’m just a word nerd.