Last week, Deirdre (my fellow Children’s Librarian) and I started talking about how even though many people like the same book, they may like it for different reasons. Has that ever happened to you? You love a particular book, you think the characters are awesome or you love the way the author writes dialogue and then someone else comes along and states that they love that book for the setting or the romance or another reason. I think this is true for most books, that just about every reader likes it for a different reason. But, it always shocks me when people have a different reason for liking a book.
Our conversation went something like this:
D: I think it’s really interesting that several people can like the same book but for different reasons. There are so many books that we both like, but we like different aspects of them.
D: Exactly, some people like her books for the humor, some for the romance, the intrigue, the world building, and even her writing style.
Me: Hmm, yes. I love The Queen’s Thief series for the world building. MWT builds a world that is so intricate and full of little details that you feel that it could be a real place, that you could travel there and find her buildings and roads and cities.
D: For me it’s the way MWT creates her characters. She shows you the world through the characters and dialogue. Even the minor characters, even though you might not see them often, they have motivations and have a basis in reality. All of the characters seem so real.
Me: The Demon’s Lexicon by Sarah Rees Brennan is another book, well series now, that is very character driven. It’s really Nick and Alan and Mae and Jamie that drive the story.
D: That and love. What would you do for your sibling? What lengths would you go to, to protect a family member?
Me: Yes, love. Love of all types really, but mainly familial love. That is such a brilliant way to set up a story and give you the characters’ main motivation all at once. It really makes the ending so much more amazing and heart wrenching. What about world building what other books are known for that or that’s the main reason you loved it?
D: People love Tolkien for his characters, but I also loved The Lord of the Rings for the world building. Most of all, I think it's the descriptions that make the story. His descriptions are so vivid that you can really smell, see, hear, feel everything that is going on while you're reading
Me: And discussing
D: Yes, and discussing. I love getting lost in books and Tolkien's decsriptions let me know the exact temperature and exactly how much rain is falling.
Me: What about vampire books or books with paranormal elements? I’ve been reading a lot of those lately. Sometimes, it’s the characters that draw me in, sometimes it’s the plot or the surprises that author throws in, every once in awhile the setting is just so spot on perfect that it’s enough to make the difference between a “meh” book and an excellent one.
D: I think that some people are drawn in by the horror element or they actually hate horror, but like the romantic element, or the plot and characters are interesting.
D: Right, the boarding school setting adds another aspect to the series that some readers love. It’s another layer that adds to the plot because the characters are in there own space, away from the general population, But, I was thinking more of Tantalize by Cynthia Leitich Smith, how she sets the majority of the story in a restaurant. There’s another layer there, with the food and wine and. . .
Me: And the flirting while coming up with the menus. That chef was creepy.
D: Yes, but the restaurant setting will definitely attract readers who may not normally read vampire books.
Our conversation ended here, we were at work and it was time to answer some reference questions. But, I wanted to continue the conversation with all of you. What are some books that you like for one reason, but other people like for a different one? Or what about the books we mentioned, why do you like them? Let me know in the comments.
If you would like to participate in a Book Talk post please let leave a comment or email me at heartsbooks (at) gmail (dot) com
***To celebrate the first Book Talk post, I want to share some of the books Deirdre and I talked about.***
Up for grabs are:
The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner
Evernight by Claudia Gray
The Demon's Lexicon by Sarah Rees Brennan
Fill out the form, telling which book you would like to win.
There will be two winners.
This contest is US only
It ends on June 25th at Midnight Eastern Time.