Monday, February 10, 2014

Living in a Fantasy World

You know what I look for in books? Comfort.

For some people that means a reread of an old favourite... For me? That means a favourite genre.

I started out 2014 awesome and then I started to fizzle with my reading. And, I stupidly didn't get my act together and resort to the comfort for about two weeks. When it gets right down to it fantasy and science-fiction are where I am meant to read. I have been reading them my entire life and they are just 'my thing'. When this world gets too stressful; why would I want to read more about 'this world'. I want to visit worlds that are imaginary or events that, while may happen someday, haven't happened yet. When I admit that I will never be a 'contemporary' reader than reading clicks for me and I am off and running.

And, that's what happened this year. I gave up on books that were good, don't get me wrong, but they were just not clicking with me at that moment. I picked up Shadowplay by Laura Lam, I flew through it, and I haven't looked back since.

I remember discovering my ideal books. I read A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle and I loved it. Before that I watched a bit of science-fiction on television; but I hadn't admitted to myself that I liked it. If you look at my reading now it has moved more into fantasy, but science-fiction came first. If I trace fantasy back it was probably The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley that launched that.

In 2014, my launching pad was definitely reading What Makes This Book so Great by Jo Walton. It got me excited about reading! It came at a perfect time in my reading. It inspired me to get back to science-fiction, something I tell myself every year that I will do; but it also got me back into a groove. (My reading has been struggling since 2012, folks. It would get back on track for a while, but then it would derail...) Will my momentum of February keep me going for the rest of the year? I hope so! I have What Makes This Book so Great hovering nearby for when I need a reminder...

And, I have this post to remind me to put aside a book that isn't working for me and pick up a book in 'my genre'. I have to face the fact that I read a certain way and not stress about the rest. And, if 2014 is mostly a science-fiction and fantasy year... Who cares! I know that I will have fun reading.

What do you consider YOUR genre(s)?


This post is part of a fun event hosted by Doing Dewey, Estella's Revenge, From Isi, and Love at First Book. Head over to these blogs to see other posts and link up your own!

14 comments:

  1. Ahhh. Comfort and escape. It isn't that I don't appreciate other genres, because I do, but my comfort reads remain fantasy, science fiction, and mysteries. I just finished an interesting sci fi--In Retrospect by Ellen Larson. I read one of her mysteries and then realized that she also writes science fiction. I liked her writing in both genres. :)

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  2. My genres are memoirs, thrillers, mysteries, and women's fiction but I'm coming to enjoy nonfiction more and more. My sister could share her books with you.

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  3. I've been reading mysteries since I was a kid and always find myself going back to them, although I need a break from murder occasionally.

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  4. I definitely have comfort authors and most of them fall into the mystery genre - Barbara Michaels, Agatha Christie, Patricia Wentwoth all seem to do the trick.

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  5. Yes for comfort reading! Yes for speculative fiction, as long as it's not too much charging around with violent adventure! And yes for historical fiction (that's also not violent) because it is a nice escape from reality too! I hope you hit a nice string of good books...I am not, at the moment...sigh.

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  6. I don't know what my genres are! Every time I feel like I'm developing the ability to identify one genre or another as a genre that's good or bad for me, a hundred exceptions seem to pop up. I do like science fiction though, and I haven't read enough of it in my life for how much I tend to enjoy it.

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  7. My genre used to be historical romance. But, like many women of a certain age, that's not quite as appealing as it used to be, although it can still be a comfort in the right mood. Now, I'm not sure what my genre is. Some urban fantasy, some straight-up fantasy, a startling amount of YA. And, right now, nonfiction about the 1600s in England which I'm finding oddly comforting somehow -- they are, after all, figuring out how the universe works and that's a kind of comfort.

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  8. I feel like you feel, and I think the reason why 2013 was such a disappointing reading year for me was because I fought so hard against reading comfortable books. It was a nice experience, but I didn't enjoy it as much, you know?

    Mysteries and thrillers are definitely a comfort zone for me, as are slightly paranormal/fantasy novels. Speculative themes, in general.

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  9. I read a lot of genres but I would really like to abandon books that do not click. I feel an odd duty when I sart a book and sometimes it's worth to read to the end. Mostly not though.

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  10. You're so right in this. I think that so many people forget that reading is (for most people) not a job but a fun thing to do. I read literary fiction, nonfiction, and classics. I've strayed and will stray from those genres, but I stick to the ones I have success with. I don't like romance or happy endings, but I love hopeful endings.

    Thank you for participating in Literary Love 14! :D

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  11. I just laid aside a book as a matter of fact. Not that I was that far into it but of the several books I've been reading that was the one I least wanted to pick up so out it went. Personally my genres are sci-fi, fantasy and crime. And I do love a bit of travel writing though I haven't read any this year so far. I'm doing a lot (for me) of challenges this year but mostly they fit into my comfort zone of reading quite nicely. And I'm happy with that.

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  12. I'm going through that at the moment, though unlike you I'm being needlessly strict and not going back to comfort. I haven't finished a book for February yet...

    For me it's fantasy and history. Certain classics, too, but I usually only find out which classics once I'm reading them. And that's if 'classics' can be considered a genre.

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  13. I was all about some Sci-Fi for a long time, and that probably ties back to A Wrinkle in Time, too! But lately I have been finding myself drawn to any genre that really focuses on character development and growth. I REALLY want to connect with my characters and see them transform as they journey through whatever type of story they find themselves in. Fantasy, Realistic, Historical....I am just searching for real characters right now.

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  14. While I love to be challenged by books sometimes I do know that I also read a lot of comfort books. For me those are mysteries and it's usually because things always end up with the good guys coming out ahead. Perhaps that's why noir crime isn't necessarily my favorite. So enjoy your comfort books no matter what genre they are!

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