Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.
I’ve been having so much fun with Book Blogger Hop, I thought I’d take a look at another weekly post – Top Ten Tuesday! Go check out That Artsy Reader Girl for more info and to find other bloggers who take part!
This week’s topic –
I don’t reread books (who has the time?) but there are certain things I look for in books when I need a bit of comfort, so I’m going for more of a general thing here rather than specific books.
If I know a book is going to be funny in some way, it definitely jumps to the top of my list if I need something comforting. It’s a rare a book makes me truly laugh, but occasionally I come across one that does! Half a Soul isn’t a comedy as such, but there are parts of that book that had me laughing my head off. Anything by Terry Pratchett tends to do the trick, and on the whole I’ve read some really funny Romance books too, which brings me to…
Romance has quickly become my go-to comfort genre. But it needs to be a bit more of a lighter romance. As much as I love Fantasy Romance/Paranormal Romance etc, they tend to err towards a darker element, or at least have higher stakes. Contemporary and Historical are usually a bit more of a comfort, especially if it’s characters I find myself instantly rooting for. #TheLeftoverBride, That Could Be Enough and The Meeting Point definitely spring to mind.
3. Strong Women
I have to admit, when I read a book with a really strong woman at the centre, it’s comforting. Maybe because it usually comes with some lows for her, and it’s a reminder when I need it of what we are all capable of. It’s the tend of comfort I look for when things are taking a downturn. If I was going to reread a book with this as it’s focus, it’d probably be The Man With No Shadow, by Bonnie Quinn. A very recent read but I got to talk about it on Esbat, the podcast I co-host. The first book we actually discussed – Whispers in the Dark – falls into this category as well.
Depending on the overall genre – I wouldn’t class Horror YA as ‘comforting’ – but largely, if I’m looking for something to completely distract me, I’m likely to pick up a YA. It’s often a bit easier to sink into, a bit more tightly packed, and a good one is incredibly difficult to put down. Teens are a tough audience, after all. Contemporary YA Romance is probably best for this, though sometimes the ‘lighter’ YA Fantasy serves well, too, though it truly does depend – both genres, like their adult counterparts, can tackle some tougher themes, too. Ones that spring to mind are Becky Albertalli’s Kate in Waiting and Leah Johnson’s You Should See Me in a Crown, and on the Fantasy side, Spin the Dawn and Unravel the Dusk by Elizabeth Lim.
Again, I love ‘darker’ books, but sometimes you just want something fun and light hearted! Some seemingly darker genres do have this ability, depending on the subject matter they’re tackling – comedy horror or something more on the pulp side, for example. But for me, fun means characters who are maybe snarky, with a bit of a bite, or a book on the whole that doesn’t take itself too seriously. It’s surprising what books you can have that kind of fun with and just slip into it and honestly forget about things for a while. One that springs to mind is Fight Night – it has a sad, darker undertone, but the author manages to make the whole journey a delight.
I’m going to stick to five sections, as I know I mentioned more than 10 books in the post itself! So tell me – what sort of thing do you look for in a comfort read, or do you reach for the same familiar books for a reread?