My reading life has gone through a major shift over the past few years. For most of my life, mystery/suspense made up the majority of my reading. After reading The Hunger Games trilogy six years ago, I added quite a few dystopian books. But over the past four years, I’ve broadened my reading horizons so much and added genres I’d never tried before. I’ve been surprised by some of the genres that hooked me. Here’s a peek at three genres I now love and the books that first hooked me.
The book that first made me love it: Dear Mr. Knightly by Katherine Reay
This is the genre that surprised me the most. I had always turned up my nose at romance novels. I’m a sucker for a sweet, sappy movie – Sabrina and While You Were Sleeping are among my favorites – but I’d never been a romance reader, with one or two rare exceptions. But in 2015, everyone was talking about Dear Mr. Knightly and I finally decided to see what all the fuss was about. I was hooked from the first chapter. The story was so sweet and the writing was outstanding. I’ve since read everything Katherine Reay has written and added quite a few authors to my list of favorites. A pretty large portion of my TBR list now includes contemporary romance authors such as Lindsay Harrel, Rachel Hauck, and Bethany Turner.
Split Time/Time Slip
The book that first made me love it: The Reckoning at Gossamer Pond by Jaime Jo Wright
Split time fiction tells two (or more) stories in different time periods. The stories are linked together in some way. Gossamer Pond wasn’t the first split time novel I read, but it was the one that made me absolutely love this unique genre. Jaime Jo Wright, Amanda Dykes, Lindsay Harrel, Kristy Cambron, and Rachel Hauck all write amazing split time novels.
Women’s Fiction (contemporary and historical)
The book that first made me love it: Paint Chips by Susie Finkbeiner
One genre I’ve found myself reading much more of is women’s fiction, both historical and contemporary. These are novels that generally don’t include romance or include romance as a small part of the story. Many involve married couples, like Elizabeth Byler Younts’ The Solace of Water. These books often sew with heavy topics like adultery, abuse, depression, and mental illness. Authors like Elizabeth Byler Younts and Julie Cantrell are among my favorites.
What genres do you read you most? Have your reading habits stayed the same or have they changed over time?