Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Top Ten "must read" triggers

Top Ten Words/Topics That Instantly Make Me Buy/Pick Up A Book is the theme for this weeks top ten. Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish blog with a different top ten list theme (all related to books) every Tuesday (see the full list here).

Unique libraries. Like in the Archived, by Victoria Schwab - library of living, breathing Memories,  and Lirael, by Garth Nix - a library of dangerous creatures.

Horses.  I'll pretty much read anything where horses play a major role. Or even a minor role.  Kid stories or adult stories. My all time favorite is the My Friend Flicka series by Mary O'Hara, followed closely by The Horse and His Boy, by C.S. Lewis (I'm reading it to my kids right now). But I love newer horse books too, like the Horse Whisperer, and Sara Gruen's Riding Lessons and Flying Changes, and The Hearts of Horses by Molly Gloss.

Uncommon mythical creatures. Like onis and griffins, especially when combined with the unexpected like Japanese steampunk in Stormdancer, by Jay Kristoff.  Or creatures like gargoyles! I want a YA gargoyles-come-to-life book! I actually had the great fortune of beta-reading such a book, and lament no publisher has picked it up yet! (that's for you K.T., still hoping).
A unique take on dragons.  But it really has to be unique, like the Temeraire series by Naomi Novik:  dragons in regency England. Or dragons who can transform into humans, as in Seraphina, by Rachel Hartman

Fairytale or myth re-telling. These are hard to pull off - for instance I adored Robin McKinley's Beauty (Beauty and the Beast retelling) and the Goose Girl, by Shannon Hale, but wasn't crazy about Cinder or The Book of Wonders. But they are still instant draws for me - even lesser known fairytales or myths.  A retelling of Arabian Nights made me buy the Book of Wonders, plus, my goodness just look at this cover! It was a little to young for me, anyone know of a YA retelling of Arabian Nights? Want. Need.
Time twists or time travel. Like When You Reach Me, by Rebecca Stead and Timeless by Alexandra Monir. So many of my favorite movies, like Deja Vu, fall in this category too.
Contemporary stories with a historical parallel. Probably because these mirror time travel, in a way -  finding connections between two different lives in two different times. Like Shape of Mercy by Susan Meissner and  The Scarlet Thread by Francine Rivers.

Historical fantasy.  Instant sell for me. Like you wouldn't believe of how instant. Grave Mercy, by Robin  La Fevers;  Wildwood Dancing, by Juliette Marillier, and best of all, the Temeraire series (yes, mentioning this one TWICE!!!) by Naomi Novik.
Mind or memory twists. Like the science fiction scenario of two minds in one body in What's Left of Me, by Kat Zhang, or carrying another person's memories (I know I've read this but can't think of an example! Help!) Not enough books in this category!

Any wicked cool science fiction premise. Like the living prison Incarceron, by Catherine Fischer, or the ability to foresee the path of a choice in Pivot Point, by Kasie West.
By the way, I'm giving away a copy of Pivot Point tomorrow through May 7th so come back! 

What are some triggers for "must read" for you???


  1. some really cool covers too.

  2. Yes to anything set in a library - I love Lirael, too! I also tend to go for books featuring uncommon mythical creatures, although I'm always up for an original spin on an old idea.

  3. I loved What's Left of Me. I thought the twist was fantastic. As for Horses - I loved Black Beauty when I was little. I can definitely understand the appeal for horse books. Great List :)

  4. Another fabulously eclectic read!! I think anything with a cat on the cover and the latest from Terry Pratchett are must reads for me! LOL! Take care

  5. I read pretty much everything (except horror...too scary!) so I'm up for all of these! Looking over my bookshelves, there are so many different genres and targeted audience that pretty much the fact that it's a BOOK is enough of a must-read trigger for me!!

    Happy reading and writing! from Laura Marcella @ Wavy Lines

  6. Lisa @ Bookshelf FantasiesApril 30, 2013 at 11:18 AM

    Ooh, nice list! I was a horse book fanatic as a kid -- all those Marguerite Henry books! I love the mind/memory twists as well. It's always so interesting to read books where the main character can't necessarily rely on his/her own mind! Terrific choices here, lots for me to check out! :)

  7. We have a lot of similarities (though I didn't necessarily add most of these to my list)! The only one that I really could care less about is horses. Growing up, I always felt like I was some kind of failure as a girl because all the other girls liked horses and wanted ponies but all I could think about was how big and smelly their poo was. Yes, I'm just that weird. Ha! Thanks for stopping by my TTT :)

  8. Alice @ Alice in ReaderlandApril 30, 2013 at 12:30 PM

    I love contemporary/historical parallel stories, as well as dragons and time twists/travel! :) Thanks for stopping by my TTT list!

    Alice @ Alice in Readerland

  9. Wow, I have no idea what makes me pick up a book. I guess I should think about that some time. I did love Pivot Point, though, and I think I got the recommendation from you. (So, thanks!)

  10. Oooh, I love what you did with this list! In addition to our similarities, I heartily agree on unique libraries AND I love your mention of dragons. I wanted to work SERAPHINA into my list somewhere, but plain ol' dragons just don't do it for me. The way you said it is the way I wanted to say it. I just didn't know it!

  11. ohhh...dragons... i love dragons....

  12. Oh, no. My TBR pile just grew another foot. I'm a sucker for fairy tale retelling or anything that compares itself to Star Wars or Lord of the Rings.

  13. Horses and uncommon mythical creatures.. you've read The Scorpio Races, right? If not, it should appeal for both those reasons.

  14. This reminds me of all those Saddle Club, Pine Hollow, Heartland, Thoroughbred, and Pony Pals books I have on my shelf. ☺



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