What I Look For In Books

Everyone has their own criteria while reading. What makes a book your favorite? What do you love reading? Today, I wanted to talk about some of the things that make my inner fangirl squeal with happiness when I read. I have five main things I look for in a book, and for each one I’ll be giving one example of a book. 

1. Plot: This one, I think, is a no-brainer. No matter how amazing everything else is, I do need a plot. I love plot twists and turns, especially in my fantasy books. The only time when I’m okay with there being less of a plot is if the book is marketed as a coming-of-age story, in which that case I know that not a lot will be happening.

For example, Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo has an AMAZING plot. Of course it also has a bunch of other qualities, but the plot has so many twists and turns…

2. Writing: Writing is so so so important for me. It’s what pulls me in, makes me feel as if I am part of the story. It sets the atmosphere. Good writing can also make up for a slower moving storyโ€”not if the book itself has a bad plotโ€”but if the author is trying to make you feel something using words, then I can overlook the plot for the beautiful writing.

Example: The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. Don’t get me wrong, I loved everything about this book, but the writing is what I think made it shine. 

3. Characters: Characters, are, for me what make or break the story. In the end, its all about the characters. A book may have an amazing unique plot with gorgeous prose, but if the characters are ANNOYING and I can’t connect with them…well. I’ll enjoy the book to some extent but after one point the characters have to be well-written and not flat. I don’t care if they’re evil, or good, I just want characters that make sense. Ones that you can understand.

Example: The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater. I think this one is obvious, haha. ๐Ÿ™‚

4. Romance: I don’t need Romance in a book. In fact, sometimes the romance gets so annoying and angsty that I just don’t want it. But, if there is romance, there are a few things I want:

  • Please, no love triangle. I cannot tolerate them. The only love triangle I like is the one in The Infernal Devices, but that is seriously one in billions.
  • I don’t like the overused perfect guy in YA. Don’t get me wrong, a lot of my favorite books have this trope and it CAN be written well but after one point it becomes annoying. Blue eyes, sarcastic smile, dark past. I like it, but I’d rather something more unique.
  • Absolutely no instalove. Out of all the things I listed, this is what I hate the most. I can tolerate the others, but I can NOT tolerate instalove. The book I’m reading WILL receive a lower rating if there is instalove.
  • A nicely written, deep, partially angsty relationship is what I look for. Too much angst is bad, but I do like it when things are hard for the protagonists because it makes them coming together even better. ๐Ÿ™‚

Example: The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh. Everything about this book is beautiful, but the romance is even more beautiful. Its lush and well developed, and I love the relationship between the characters.

And finally,
5. Deepness/Moral, or rather, if the book makes me think. The thing that makes a book a favorite for me is if it makes me think. If, in my free time, or any time, I am thinking of the characters and the plot and all the ways it made my heart hurt. I like it when books make me think. I love it actually. And it plays such an important role for me.

For example, I rate books five stars not that rarely. However, only a few of those are my favorites because although I may have thought a book is amazing, if I don’t think about it after I’ve read it, it doesn’t deserve that name.

Example book: The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender. Not only is this book beautifully written, but it made me think so much. Even today, a year and a half after I read it, I think of it with admiration. โค๏ธ 

Of course there are other things that I put into consideration while reading a book, such as humor, but these are the main ones.

And that’s it for this post! What does a book have to have for it to be a favorite of yours? 

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6 thoughts on “What I Look For In Books

  1. Writing is really important to me as well, but I think the element I look for the most nowadays is whether or not it makes me think. A book that doesn’t make me think just feels so shallow to me, no matter how amazing the characters are or how unexpected the plot twists might be. Love this discussion! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Sunday Post | Jully 17, 2016

  3. Pingback: July: My Month in Review | Wrap Up & Highlights | AloofBooks

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