I skipped last week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic because I did not have a strong opinion on covers. However, I was so excited about this week’s topic.This week is all about the things on your Reading Wishlist or things that you would like to see more of in books. Who doesn’t love talking about their favorite things to read about? Some of the things on my list cross over to things I wish were explored more across TV and movies too!
Top Ten Tuesday is a meme created by The Broke and The Bookish.
1. Ensemble Casts
I’ve definitely already talked about this before, but there are not enough books that revolve around a cast of characters. Maybe it’s just the books I read, but I find that a lot of them are only about a small number of people. There is also usually just one main character. Personally, I want to read a story with multiple sub-plots and characters, cleverly woven into an epic tale. I not only want to see our MC’s growth, but I want to see the growth of all of our other characters too. (More than one MC would be cool too!)
One book that I think accomplished that exceptionally well is The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas. There were so many characters in this book and most of them were extremely well developed and had their own thing going on. It was one of my favorite parts of the book, and I just want to see more of it. Especially in the contemporary world. Just give me an awesome team to love and follow okay?
2. Female Friendship
I read a lot of contemporary and I will admit I pick it up because I want a cute romance. However, I would honestly love a book where friendship takes the forefront and the romance sort of takes the back seat. I would especially love to see this in the form of female friendship.
It seems that more often than not girls get pitted against each other, especially in YA. Sometimes they think they’re better than other girls, have these arch enemies, or just have male best friends. I just sit in my reading corner like, “Where is the female friendship?” There needs to be more of it because it’s a cool dynamic and relationship to explore. I just want to see more books about best friends. A less sad version of Beaches would be excellent!
3. Platonic Friendship
This sort of goes along with female friendship, I clearly just want stronger friendships represented in stories. Platonic friendships especially. It seems that in books, movies and TV if you have a male/female friendship and they’re both heterosexual, one of them must be in love with the other. I personally have two guy friends that I have never felt any sort of thing for and the feeling is mutual. Girls and guys can just be friends people!
This theme should also apply to gay male friends or lesbian friends in a book. Just because there is two people who could potentially be attracted to each other doesn’t mean you need to force them into a relationship!
4. Third Person POV
So many of the books I read are told in the first person narrative. There’s nothing wrong with how you choose to write a story and some stories benefit from this perspective. However, as a writer of the third person narrative I would love to see more of it. If only so that it will make me a better writer and help me with certain aspects of my book.
Also a third person POV would provide new perspective on the same tropes that we always read as it offers multiple perspectives. Granted you need a good cast of characters for this, so you can also give me an ensemble cast when you do this. I think that Maggie Stiefvater does this extremely well in her series The Raven Boys. I love all of the varying perspectives in those books (I’m only 2 books in FYI).
5. Six Degrees of Separation Plots
I really subscribe to the idea of six degrees of separation and love when this idea is explored in fiction. The most recent example of this that I’ve read is Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel. I love seeing how separate story lines interconnect, it’s really cool. I don’t stumble upon this theme very often and would like to see it explored more. It’s so cool to see how small things or connections can effect characters.
6. Dream Plots
I’ve always thought dreams are super interesting. This may be due to the fact that I’m constantly trying to find meaning in my crazy ass dreams. Any time something that explores dreams, I’m interested and hooked. I’m not sure that I’ve ever read a book with this element, but the film Inception definitely delivered a cool take on dreams.
I know that Laini Taylor just released a book that deals with dreams and I cannot wait to get my hands on it. I think the idea of dreams is so open ended and you can go so many different places with it. It’s disappointing that so few movies/books about dreams are created.
7. Heist Stories in the “Real World”
If you know me at all, you know that I love a good, clever heist plot line. I’ve talked about it so many times on my blog already, but really I cannot get enough of these stories. Ever since I read the Heist Society Series by Ally Carter I have been searching for something similar for like ever. All that I have found are heist stories that take place in fantasy worlds such as Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo and The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson. Don’t get me wrong they satisfy me somewhat, but where are the stories set in a more realistic world?! Why must they all take place in a fantasy world? I just want some variety okay!
Maybe I shouldn’t be complaining because there are not many of these types of stories. I just want more heist stories okay?
8. Family Characters in YA
It’s no secret that I read a lot of YA. Especially, a lot of YA romance which is somewhat of a guilty pleasure of mine. I’ve noticed that the parents and siblings of these characters are not always the most developed. I would love to see more well developed parents and siblings with character arcs. I have to bring up The Hate U Give again because this was something that Angie Thomas did SO WELL! I loved Star’s family and really felt like I knew her parents, her siblings, and her uncle.
When you’re a teenager, your family plays such a big role in your life and I don’t think this factor gets represented well in fiction. I wish there were more books that featured a main family plot line or I’ll even take a book about a family dynamic. Not only would this make it more realistic, I think there is so much you could explore here and talk about.
I really enjoy story lines that explore the relationship between older and younger generations. Right now especially, it seems like there is a major disconnect and it’s something that’s screaming to be written about.
9. Diversity Among Diversity
Everyone wants more diversity and I am so for that. We live in a diverse world and it’s only fair that literature reflect that. However, I want diversity that is also diverse. I am tired of seeing the same types of diverse characters. Most of the time they are stereotypes, or based off stereotypes, or just a main stream perspective of what this kind of character is like.
The best way I can try to explain this is to get a little personal here. My sister is deaf and she has a cochlear implant. She chooses to speak. It frustrates me that almost every time that I see a deaf or Deaf character represented in media, whether that be tv, movies, books, or even ads, they sign. Don’t get me wrong, I am not trying to take away their representation. I think it’s great and important that we get to see these characters and people. However, there are many different kinds of deaf people. There are some that identify as Deaf and some that identify as just deaf. There are people who sign, who speak, and who both sign and speak. I would like to someone like my sister also represented. It’s not fair that we only see one side of this world.
This goes for everything that falls under the diversity umbrella. Everyone has a different story and they all deserve to be represented. Obviously, we need more diverse things for this to happen. I hope that as we do get more diversity this happens naturally and that we don’t see the same sorts of things get represented. That is my biggest fear.
10. Different Types of Strong Female Characters
When we see a strong female character in fiction, they are only represented in very a few different ways. They are either a cold-hearted bitch or they are very strong physically. Sometimes they are a mixture of the two. I hate the fact that this is the only kind of female badassery that is represented. It frustrates me to no end because in real life female badasses come in all shapes and sizes. The same can be said for strong woman in general. I don’t think you need to be a badass to be a strong female character. Why can’t someone like me, who is a clumsy, awkward idiot not be perceived as a strong female character?
I’d like to think that most of us are our own type of badass and we need to be represented. There needs to more types of women represented period. End of story.
Clearly, I’m very passionate about my reading wish list. It’s hard not to be, especially in cases like my love for heist stories. It’s like I have a reading hole in my heart that needs to be filled. It is not surprise to me that this reading wish list of mine also serves as my best inspiration for my writing.
I already have a heist story in mind that features an ensemble cast, female friendship, platonic friendship, diverse characters, and different kinds of female badassery. It might be my next project when I finish what I’m already working on. Who knows.
What is on your Reading Wish List? What do we need more of in fiction? Let me know down in the comments. Also, if you know of any great heist books that I have yet to hear of please let me know! Seriously.