Today's discussion from ArmchairBEA is Genre Fiction, which is one of my favorite types of books to read. Which genre do I prefer? Since I've been blogging I think I have read just about everything, but if I had to pick an all-around favorite I think it would be a toss-up between Romance and Mystery/Thriller. Now I could go one step further and say I prefer contemporary romance, historical romance, paranormal romance, erotic romance and romantic suspense. There are probably a few other types mixed in as well as you know if you are familiar with the romance genre. Just like I lumped together Mystery/Thriller, but there are political thrillers, medical thrillers, cozy mysteries, regular mystery, etc. Once upon a time I remember it was just called Romance or Thriller or Mystery, but now there are so many wonderful books of all types out there that these additional classifications seem to help narrow down the field for those that aren't scouring blogs, Amazon, Shelf Awareness or have publicists sending them wonderful announcements.
But back to the questions from ArmchairBEA:
If you’re a reader of genre fiction do you have a favourite author or series? Nora Roberts, Stephen King, James Patterson (yes I still read him for sheer entertainment value) will always be go to authors for me. I seek out their titles from the library when they release. Joe Hill is another great one and I still love Dean Koontz as well. I got my start with horror books, but it seems that slowly my favorite horror authors have gone the way of thrillers. Has anyone else noticed that? But then again there are new great horror authors out there as well.
And what keeps bringing you back for more fantasy/sci fi/horror etc? Well-written books, or just sheer entertainment value. When I go to read a book, I'm not looking for life lessons unless I read non-fiction. Now if I get one in the process of being entertained, that doesn't bother me. But I want a pure blissful, fun reading experience when I pick up genre fiction. Yes sometimes the books are heavy, but if I'm in the mood for it then it's perfect. That's what I love about genre fiction, there really is something for everyone in it.
And if you don’t read one (or more) of these genres what is it that deters you from those sections of the bookstore? I don't think there is a section of the bookstore I am deterred from. I love to just look and browse. Now there are sections I will probably never buy from, but I still love to look around. Who knows a cover or title may catch my eye and one day I may have a new favorite genre!
I’m also curious to hear why you think these genres often don’t get the recognition they deserve. I am hopeful that one day they will get the recognition they deserve. Just because of the sheer amount of genre fiction these days, I am in hope that one day a high school class will be studying the greats of the current times, the ones that were read and lauded by the masses not the few. I really feel Stephen King can be there one day, I mean his writing is amazing, he just happens to write genre fiction. And character studies could be done on Nora Roberts' characters (though the books probably aren't fit for a high school classroom, but hey I read them shortly after high school). I am pleased to see my middle schooler getting options for his reading program that run from the middle school classics (Hatchet by Gary Paulson) and new YA stuff (the Chronicles of Vladimir Tod by Heather Brewer). Kudos to them for engaging the kids and hopefully starting a life time of reading with these choices!