Have you ever had one of those moments where you wish there was something else included in books?
Whether it be something of a magical topic, or something positively mundane, over my years of reading quite a stack of wishful thinking has built up on this topic.
So here are the top 10 things I’d like to see more of in books!
1. A story without any romance
Why does every single story have romance in it somewhere? Why can’t anyone go on an adventure without falling for someone along the way? There’s plenty of other relationships to be had in books. Family. Friends. Foes. Pets. Anything other than another romance. Please.
2. LGBTQ characters, but where it’s not a big deal. It’s normal.
I’ve only seen a few books that do this. All the other books I’ve read so far with LGBTQ+ characters in, that’s the main topic of the book, or at least one of the main topics of the book. A big fuss is made out of it, when it really doesn’t need to be. I feel like it needs to be treated as a normal thing, so that soon enough when someone mentions there’s romance in a book, people’s automatic thoughts aren’t boy meets girl.
3. Characters actually not believing they’ve been sucked into an alternate reality fantasy type world.
Does anyone else think that when a character inevitably finds out they’re meant to be part of this fantasy world they’ve never heard of…they believe it all a bit too quickly?
I mean, if someone came up to me and something along the lines of…
“You’re the lost heir of this kingdom. You need to retake your throne”
“You have magic. You need to train it before it’s out of control”
“You’re destined to be part of this world. It happens once in a millennia but here you are”
Or basically if someone told me I had magic at all, no matter how much I’d want to believe it…I just wouldn’t. I’d need so much convincing. SO MUCH. There would be so much disbelief coursing through my veins, that I’d be so lucky as to join this wonderful world full of all the magic I long for. I just wouldn’t believe it for a long time.
4. Music mentioned more.
Why is it never mentioned when people listen to music? Or when people sing, even in the quiet got-a-song-stuck-in-your-head way? As someone who literally sings every day and annoys the hell out of everyone around me because I never stop singing quietly to myself, it baffles me that music is mentioned so rarely. I think from the books I’ve read, I’ve only ever seen someone play the piano – that being in Throne of Glass. Oh, and music is mentioned quite a bit in the Am I Normal Yet? series by Holly Bourne. Obviously I might be missing some, but that’s the only one that comes to mind. Whether it’s an instrument being played, someone singing, or even just someone listening to music through their earphones or having a good dance around.
5. Money mentioned more.
This is probably the one I’d like to see more of. Too often in books, money isn’t ever an issue. Teenagers like me just leave and go off adventuring around the country on road trips, or go to coffee shops, or just hitch up and leave to somewhere without wondering if they have enough money to buy food out or not (for example). As a teenager, I literally plan out how much money I have and what I need to buy. And yet somehow in books everyone comes from a wealthy enough family that these things don’t need to be thought about.
6. The protagonist’s love interest doesn’t end up with them.
This is one that I think I want, but if I was reading it I probably wouldn’t want it at all.
But don’t you think it’s rather convenient that most of the time, the main character likes a person and then lo-and-behold they’re soulmates. Isn’t it more likely a character will have a crush on someone…but nothing will happen, or there’s awkward moments where they come to admit it?
Let’s be honest, most people swear. I feel like whenever swearing is actually included in a book, the character’s reactions just feel so much more real. Like if someone dropped their phone, first reaction would be to swear while falling to pick it up. Or in fantasy, if someone’s love interest was hit during some magical war, they’re more likely to start screaming profanities while struggling to get to them.
I know it would be seen as promoting bad behaviour, but I’ve seen it included in books labelled for an older audience with warnings on the back, so that could be a thing.
This actually had it’s own discussion post not long ago. But doesn’t it seem a bit convenient that most main characters are missing that authoritative figure while they’re off out on their dangerous adventures? And not even just parents, where’s the sibling relationships? Grandma/Grandpa? Where’ve they all gone?
Every time I find a book where the family is actually mentioned, I feel like applauding the author. Well done for adding this perfectly normal thing to your book. Congrats. Great writing 😀
9. Girl Problems
You know the sort I mean. Periods. A perfectly natural thing that all of us girls go through every month. I mean sure, it’s not exactly the nicest or most interesting thing to talk about. But I don’t mean the book has to go in depth through it all.
What I mean is…How is it handled while the characters are on some wild adventure? Katniss Everdeen was in the arenas for a while. Did they send stuff in for her or take her out to deal with it? Was she given something to stop it? And every other book. The amount of journeys in the books I read where they don’t have anything but food and water for months…how does that work?
10. Pronunciation guides
I know I know I know – some books have these. And this is a very fantasy based want.
But most fantasy books have oddly spelt character and place names…so why not give us some help with those. I’m a person who has to know how everything is pronounced, otherwise every time I come to that word, it’ll just jolt me out of my reading pace. I have to Google every single name I can’t say. And it can be quite annoying, I must say.
So there we have it!
Those are the top 10 things I’d like to see more of in books!
Which of these would you like to see more of too?
Is there anything you’d add to the list?
Are there any books you’ve read that do any of the things on the list particularly well? Recommend them in the comments!
Are there any topics that have become tropes and you want to see less of? Maybe you want to replace a trope with one of these?
Also, since I have a discussion post on the family aspect, would you like to any of the others to have their own discussion too? Which ones?
Let me know in the comments!
Until next time…
Come and visit me!