Top Ten Tuesday: Things That Make Me Pick Up a Book

Hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl

Oh, this week’s prompt is a fun one. Obviously, I don’t expect every book to fulfill all of these wishes, but they more they can hit the better.

Here are the things that will make me pick up a book instantly if I know they’re included somewhere in the plot:

1.  Is Told from the Third-Person Perspective.

I’ve been a reviewer for Long and Short Reviews for seven years now. While I have occasionally bent this rule, I generally prefer to read stories that use pronouns like he or she instead of you or I. When I read something like “she rode a horse down Main Street at high noon,” it feels like an old friend is telling this story to me. I want to lean in and absorb every last word of what happened on Main Street and how the horse reacted to any cars that might have also been there.

2. Has a Clever Title

If a title makes me laugh, I become much more likely to pick it up. In fact, I’m kind of infamous among the LASR staff and volunteers for requesting silly titles. Books also get bonus points from me if they have a humorous pun.

3. Discusses the Lighthearted Side of Illness

One of my parents works in the medical field, so I grew up hearing all sorts of interesting stories about illnesses, injuries, and surgeries when I was growing up.

We obviously never heard any identifying information about the patients, just funny anecdotes about how hospitals actually work behind the scenes, things that go wrong with the human body, and stuff like that.

4. Talks About World War I

There are approximately five billion stories out there about World War II and only three about World War I. (Okay, so I might be exaggerating a little there). I’m always interested in learning more about this time in history. It was the first modern war, after all.

It has been FDA viagra sale approved and clinically proven solution for male erectile condition and helps them in having an enjoyable lovemaking session. Acai levitra prescription online is also known as a Natural remedy for treating several health issues. People who are visiting chiropractors seeking relief from pain and restore the body’s ability to self-heal and fight-off diseases without even resorting to prescriptive drugs or surgical therapy. buy tadalafil mastercard There are many other medicines available with these online levitra side effects pharmacies. 5. Introduces Magic that Has Logical Rules

If I’m reading a story set in a world where magic exists, I always appreciate it when the author comes up with a coherent set of rules about how magic works, what it’s capable of, and what no spell will ever able to do in that universe. It’s a lot easier to suspend disbelief when you know exactly where the boundaries are for wizards and witches.

6. Has an “Unlikely” Protagonist 

Give me protagonists who are 70-year-old grandmothers, or who have a disability, or who are also single parents raising a couple of small children on their own. I’m hungry for far more stories about people who break the traditional mold when it comes to who and what audiences expect heroes to be.

7. Includes an Open-Ended Final Scene

As long as my most important questions about the plot and characters are answered, I really like it when books leave a few dangling strings. It’s cool to have a few minor plot points left up to the reader’s imagination so us fans have something to discuss and debate for years to come.

8. Makes the Food Sound Delicious

I’ve read quite a few fantasy novels over the years.  One of the things they all seem to have in common are their descriptions of glorious feasts.

Reading about the delicious meals that hobbits, elves, and other creatures eat has taught me to expect other genres to put just as much effort into describing what humans eat when they’re celebrating.

9. Has a Happy Ending

Occasionally I’ve been known to flip ahead to the final page of a book before starting it just to make sure it ends in a cheerful place. I can handle a lot of dark material, but I do need to be reassured that the characters will survive those scenes and go on to get whatever it is they were hoping for.

10. Fights Stereotypes in General

I love it when characters are written as well-rounded individuals whose hobbies, interests, or personality traits might not necessarily fit what society assumes someone of their race, gender, sexual orientation, or other label is actually supposed to be like.


  1. 100% YES to “unlikely” protagonists. I love stories like that, and I think I tend to prefer third person to first person, too. Great list!

    • Thank you. Yeah, “unlikely” protagonists are the best. I hope we’ll soon have so many different types of heroes that everyone has a role model to look up to.

  2. Deb Nance at Readerbuzz says

    I’m fascinated by the specificity of your list. Wow. You really know what you like in a book.

    Maybe I should rethink my list.

  3. Ah see I really like first person perspectives, both to read and write, I feel like it allows me to get closer to the characters!
    My TTT:

  4. As I’ve got older I’ve also leant towards the happy ending- I can’t deal with some issues or darkness any more for my own Mental health so I would rather choose lighter stories.
    WWI is a wobbly point for me as for some reason it severely upsets me- there are plenty of WWI home front books out there (especially in the middle grade bracket which I happily read too) but it can’t be set in the trenches (birdsong nearly killed me) or involve animals anything Warhorse is banned for my sanity!!

    • Yeah, same here.

      I didn’t realize there were so many WWI books out there. Can you recommend a few?

  5. I really love unusual protagonists and logical magic systems too ?

  6. Clever titles are the best! 🙂 I love it when a title pulls me.

  7. I prefer the happy endings as well. If it’s a book I love enough, but doesn’t have a happy ending, I generally don’t accept canon (::cough cough:: Allegiant). I tend to prefer 1st person though.

    • What is it about first person that you prefer?

      I’ve rejected canon a few times, too. Some characters simply must have happy endings.

  8. Your entire list of reasons/things that make you pick up a book are SO ON POINT. Especially the magical aspects and clever titles. I’m such a sucker for cleverness in the titles. Thank you for sharing!

  9. I love really well-built magical systems as well. So much to enjoy in those stories.

  10. Great list! Especially the unlikable protagonist – I love those.

  11. Your post is a lot detailed than my TTT post this week. Thank you for stopping by and leaving me a comment this week on my TTT post. Happy reading!

  12. I so agree with the unlikely protagonist. The 70 year old grandmother being the hero is very up my alley. I love when it’s someone you wouldn’t expect – rather than the athletic, young, very obvious one.

    • So glad to hear that. Do you know of any books about senior citizens being the hero? I’d sure like to read them if you do! There’s not a lot of stuff like that out there.

  13. HEAs are really important to me, and if I am expecting one, and don’t get it, the whole book is ruined for me.

  14. Yes all the food! I like it when a book makes me hungry. 🙂 And I’ve always wondered what lembas tastes like!

    I like an unlikely protagonist too. Something new is always good!

  15. I have also grown to like third person perspectives a lot more because of the prominent increase in first and second person perspectives in most books these days.

  16. I love your list! Thanks for stopping by!

  17. I LOVE no. 9! I do that too, jump to the end to make sure there’s a happy ending. I’ve told people this before and they’re really shocked, but sometimes, how can you not 😀

  18. Unlikely protagonists — I agree with that so much! That really does elevate familiar tropes.

  19. Great list! I totally forgot to add the title to my list! That’s actually a good one. If a title is unique or interesting, I’m definitely more tempted to pick it up!

  20. Yyyyeeeesssss to delicious sounding food! I will always read about that!

  21. Happy endings are a MUST for me. I love them. Also, clever titles always draw me in too. 🙂 Thanks so much for visiting Finding Wonderland.

  22. WW1 is a good one, have you seen buzz for DARK OF THE WEST?

  23. I am a 100% with you on the 3rd person pov. I really prefer those kind of books as well and first person pov used to really put me of reading a book.

Speak Your Mind


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.