Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Things That Make Me Instantly NOT Want to Read a Book (what are your immediate turn-offs or dealbreakers when it comes to books?). I read pretty broadly, so it’s hard to come up with absolute dealbreakers — but there are some genres, covers, and other elements that tend to be big NOs for me.
My top 10:
- This kind of cover:
Book covers with shirtless men are SO unappealing to me (and how hilarious is it that there are websites that provide templates exactly for this purpose?)
2. Overly dramatic historical romances: I do enjoy Regency fiction, so no disrespect, but in general, Regency or other historical romances that are serious (as opposed to humorous or spoofy) rarely appeal to me. So… the book on the left might be a maybe for me, but the book on the right would not. (Of course, there are exceptions, such as the fact that I gobbled up the entire Bridgerton series…)
3. Gimmicky comparisons — if the blurb says that a book is the next Harry Potter or Hunger Games, chance are (a) I won’t believe it and (b) I won’t read it.
4. Literary fiction: Not a hard and fast rule, but I’ve learned over the years that the big award winners tend not to be my kind of books.
5. Spies and/or military action. No tanks or submarines for me, thanks (although I had a brief Tom Clancy phase many, many years ago).
6. Crime/thriller/domestic thriller genres: There are exceptions, but overall, I’m just not into it. No interest in murders, blackmail, cheating spouses, corporate drama, nannies with secret identities…
7. Movie tie-in covers: This isn’t a deal-breaker… but movie tie-in covers are a big turnoff for me, and I won’t pick them up unless I really and truly want the book and there are no other options.
8. Lack of worldbuilding: This applies especially to science fiction or fantasy, but if the world-building or basic scene-setting isn’t strong enough, I’m not going to stick with the book (or I’ll finish, but I’ll be mad about it.)
9. Sequels that come out so many years after the first/previous book that I’ve stopped caring. (Pretty self-explanatory, right?)
10. Plotlines about social media influencers: This is a minor issue and easy enough to avoid, but if I pick up a book to consider and see a character described as an influencer, I put it down in a hurry. Nope, nope, nope.
That’s all I can think of! It was hard to get to 10… I guess there really isn’t all that much I’d consider an absolute dealbreaker when it comes to picking up a book.
How about you? What instantly makes you not want a book?
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