My daughter told me the other day that I read depressing books.
I do not read romances if I can help it, but sometimes I am caught unawares by a book given to me for my opinion. Like the one I’m almost finished with now. I don’t read mainstream, like Nora Roberts or Danielle Steele. Actually, I want to be able to say on my deathbed that I never read Danielle Steele. It’s the formula writing that I don’t like, the books that show character names, hair color and location change but the rest of the story is the same old thing. How would I know if I never read them? I read one Nora Roberts many years ago as a favor to a friend and knew the rest would be the same. And you only have to look at how many titles Danielle Steele puts out to know she’s just plugging in hair color. This may be very unkind. I’m sure they are the most wonderful people ever to pick up a pen, but this is my opinion. My blog.
I like different. Imagination. Stretch. All from the same author. I do understand enough about publishing to know if an author has a new concept, a new idea and it’s a huge success, most publishing houses will encourage their authors to jump on the wagon rolling by. Think about all the wizards we saw after Harry Potter, which I thought was brilliant for the first three books and tiresome after that. How about all the vampires after the Twilight series. For awhile there was a spate of books that set siblings against each other after coming home to bury the last parent. Think about how many books you’ve seen that say “If you liked Gone Girl…” on the cover. Ugh.
I like Geraldine Brooks. None of her books are like the other and all are fascinating. I like Robert Galbraith (J.K. Rowling for adults – that girl can write a good story), I like Elizabeth Kostova, Kate Morton, Joanne Harris, Khaled Hosseini, Lisa See, Gail Tsukiyama, Louise Doughty. I don’t think these authors deliver depressing, they just deliver!
And when I want a real tried and true comfy good time I choose Jan Karon, Maeve Binchy, Fanny Flagg and my new hero, Fredrick Backman.
In fairness to my daughter and lest you think SHE reads Danielle Steele, she doesn’t. She reads heavy. She reads history. She loves British history/historical novels but if the action is taking place after 1400 she says that’s too late. I can give her anything and she will read it but she can’t give me much from her bedside book table. Except the last two: The Midwife’s Revolt and The Lost Sisterhood.