Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted at Broke and Bookish Here is what they have to say: Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created here at The Broke and the Bookish. This meme was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

Each week we will post a new Top Ten list complete with one of our bloggers answers. Everyone is welcome to join. All we ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND sign Mister Linky at the bottom to share with us and all those who are participating. If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Don't worry if you can't come up with ten every time..just post what you can!

This week is all about book pet peeves. I've got lots of them, and at least one will be the opposite of what most people expect, especially when they consider the fact that I'm a year away from becoming a libarian.

1. Beat up books: I LOVE them. I hate when you see a line of books that are all pristine. So I guess my pet peeve would actually be pristine books. The look so...unloved. The more beat up my books are the better. Dog eared, finger smudges (I like to eat and read), wrinkled pages from where they've gotten wet and broken spines. All those things say to me that the book is well loved. There is nothing I like more then a book that looks like's it's been to hell and back- it just means it was so good that I've read it over and over again! Of course, borrowed books get special treatment, and a bookmark, but my books are all in the line of fire!

2. Dust Jackets: HATE them. Sure they are pretty and a lot of times it's that fabulous cover art that draws me in to begin with, but who they heck invented these things? They don't stay on while you try to read, then fall off and they generally get in the way. The first thing I do is toss those suckers in the trash.

3. Bad/Absentee Parents: to be fair I don't always hate this one, but I think it is so overused. From Cinderella to Wither (out today!) we see parents who are non- existant, for legitimate reasons or simply by virtue of not caring, as well as crappy parenting and the always popular wicked step-parent. Why do they always have to be bad or invisible? Can't these kids still come into their own with some great parents standing behind them? Obviously we see some great parents out there (Simone Elkeles and Darby Karchut: I'm talking to you), but by and large we see teens struggling to find their way with no parental influence to help guide them.

4. The Love Triangle: again, not always a deal breaker, but it seems like it happens a lot. Then it becomes predictable, and I find myslef picking out who will be our two love interests long before they reveal themselves in the story. It's distracting and I'm starting to hope for something new that will surprise me and make the book stand apart from the rest.

5. Different Covers/movie tie-ins: For someone who is so lax on the whole broken spine- dust jacket issue, I get really hung up on the covers of my paperbacks. Specifically the series covers. They have to all match. I hate when the cover art changes. The Sookie Stackhouse books for instance. I started out with one sort of cover and then suddenly my store only carried some weird new cover, and the books were totally different sizes. I couldn't have that- it would look weird on my shelf (dedicated solely to series'). So I had to order the right cover and wait for them to come in. Movie tie-in's go here too. I get that you want to make money off the movie and all, but the book should stand on it's own. I HATE seeing those movie poster shots staring out at me from the book shelf.

6. Epilogues: this one is pretty universal for me. I hate them. I see that word and begin to cringe. Occasionally I come across one that works for me, but the key is that it can't jump too far ahead and it can't become a "Happily Ever After" situation without any explanation. Two of my favorite book series' ended with the dreaded Epilogue. Harry Potter and the Hunger Games both jumped ahead a million years (I may be over exagerating here) and I felt like I missed too much. How did they get there? Why did they chose that path? For books that had a lot of turmoil, the epilogues seemed too neat and tidy. Often Epilogues feel like a cop out to me, almost like saying "here's where I wanted to end up, but it would take to many pages, so just go ahead and trust me, this is how it works out".

7. The Trilogy: I love a good series. Harry Potter, The Lord of the Rings, Sookie Stackhouse, Twilight and Hunger Games. All pretty well done. Of course with those huge success stories out there, everything has the potential to be a series, and should be a series. Right? Uhhh...wrong. I'm starting to hate getting the the end of a book and realizing that I haven't gotten to the end of anything at all. Often the ending seems clipped off or stilted as if at one point it was a stand alone and then the decision was made to make it a trilogy so the ending was hastily changed to accommodate more books. I even read one book recently that had a great ending. Totally stood on it's own, it left it opened for a potential sequel, but it also was satisfying enough to just be the end of it. Then I saw three words that killed the book for me. "To be continued." Uggg- what ever happened to just writing a great book?

8. Poor research: This is probably my biggest pet peeve, and also the reason I've been working on my book for 5 years. Poor research will absolutely sink a book for me. When authors allude to things that never happened, or they get dates wrong for historical events, or describe a place in a way that is wholly inaccurate, it 100% kills a book for me. I'm sure I've read a ton of books that get it wrong and because of my own lack of knowledge on the subject at hand I never notice. Which is the crux of the problem right there. If we are writing a book, even a work of fiction, that takes place in or around a real place or event, then isn't there some sort of duty to get it right? To get it wrong smacks of laziness and arrogance and it takes me out of a book faster then just about anything else out there.

9. Lust = love: Look, I'm all for those hot, steamy scenes where our mousy leading lady gets all hot and bothered by some sexy (usually supernatural) guy. Go for it. If the guy happens to be named Eric Northman all the better. But does that equal love? Should it? Is that the message we want out there? That the hot guy who happens to kiss like the devil is the one you should love and follow into whatever danger he might get in to, even if you've never actually had a conversation with the guy. Granted, it might lead to love. I'm still holding out hope for Mr. Northman there, but really, in a few hundred pages can that happen? I really hate seeing the girl just go blindly after a hot guy without ever thinking about why she's going. I always feel like the girl loses a bit of herself when she does and that's a shame. (ahem...Bella)

10. "It's the next Twilight!" aka Hype: Look I love Twilight. Those books 100% changed my life (no joke, but feel free to laugh). They were the right books and the right time for me. Still- were they really so good that everything that comes after has to be held to that standard? Frankly, I'd be hoping, if it were my book, that someone would say "Twilight who?" when hyping my book. Which brings me to hype (see how I stuck two for one in this last slot?) When someone says "It's the next Twilight" it tantamount to saying "It's the next big thing", which is pretty awesome if you are the author, but realistically, the chances you are the next big thing are slim to none. That's not to say that the book will suck, but seriously, we can't all be Stephenie Meyers and Suzanne Collins. That doesn't even neccessariloy refer to writing ability, just success. I'd rather hear honest thoughts then generic praise, because when a book falls short of the astronomic hype it's such a let down. Even when the book is great, not living up to the hype that's out there, can pull a book down. I'd rather a book come out of nowhere and surprise me then fall short of all the talk that's swirling around. Best example for me- Stolen by Lucy Christopher or Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver. Neither had a ton of hype prior to release and both totally blew me away. That is so satisfying!


  1. Oh the absent parents! I'd forgotten about that one! That's a huuuge pet peeve of mine.

  2. I agree so much with your first point ! I was beginning to think I'm the only one in the world who loves to imprint marks of reading on my books, thanks ! :)

  3. #7 and #10 are two big ones for me. I don't mind trilogies or series that were well written enough to have each book be it's own stand alone thing (a la Harry Potter) - it's okay that the big bad hasn't been vanquished but cliff-hanger endings for the sake of selling the next book piss me off big time. And hype makes me crazy. C-R-A-Z-Y. Inevitably any book that been hyped like that always disappoints me.

  4. I totally agree with the lust=love, I put something similar on my list about whiny characters who fall in love fast or who are dreaming about their wedding just because a guy is a good kisser. Couldn't have said it better myself! :)

  5. I agree with most of your list but I really love pristine books over wrinkled books!

  6. I love beat up books too--well, some times. If I buy a new hardback, I tend to keep it pristine, but paperbacks, older books, etc. all get "love." And academic books get scribbled all over.

  7. I hate dust jackets as well. But, I never ever throw mine away. I just don't read with them on. I love the way they make the book look.

  8. I toss my dust jackets because I love the way they look all lined up with their plain spines and metallic titles sticking out. I think it makes it look like an "olde-timey" (that's a technical term) library.

    I did find one negative though. When I went to reorganize the library I realized that I threw away all the summaries/synopsis' when I threw away the dust jackets. There were some book that I had NO CLUE what they were about!

  9. I will agree with you with the poor research. I am with you.

  10. Great answers, I agree, stop and see mine.

  11. Love triangles is a really good one! I'm so sick of them these days. I think that was one of my least favorite things in The Hunger Games series.

    I also dislike reading books with dust jackets on them, but I still keep them. I take them off and leave them on the shelf and then put them back on when I'm done reading a book. If I'm buying a $20+ hardcover, I'm keeping that dust jacket I paid for!

  12. I'm a prude when it comes to my romance in the first place and an author presenting two characters as madly in love when its really all about the sex just makes me want to throw it in the trash. Most relationships in real life are complex. I think ones in books should be a little more so too.

  13. #1 & #2 - totally agree! Heh, and here I thought I was the only one.

  14. I agree with 1 and 2!

    Love your list of pet peeves. I have a some more. Come see those: Top Ten Picks!

  15. Lol, these is a great post!! All excellent points. I love twilight, but agree with what you are saying! :)