Are You a Stubborn Reader? Know Your Reading Tastes #LetsTalkBookish #LetsDiscuss2023 #BookBlogger #BookTwitter #Discussion

Do you think you are a stubborn reader? Do you know your reading tastes?

Are You a Stubborn Reader?

Are You a Stubborn Reader? Text to the left of a tall stack of hardback books

Image Source: Canva

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

This post is inspired by the Let’s Talk Bookish topic hosted by Aria @ Book Nook Bits. This post is also an entry for the 2023 Discussion Challenge hosted by Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction and Shannon @ It Starts at Midnight. Finally, Davida @ The Chocolate Lady’s Book Review Blog has also inspired me to share my thoughts about being a stubborn reader.

Let's Talk Bookish graphic
2023 Discussion Challenge (graphic picture of a stack of books, a clock, a bird, and a fox

I am a self-declared highly sensitive, PG-13, stubborn reader.

Some readers do not have strong reading preferences. They are open to reading any genre. I am not one of these readers. However, I am open to trying a book out of my comfort zone if it’s recommended by readers with similar tastes and by reviewers I trust. Generally, I know which genres I enjoy and which ones I avoid and stick closely to these preferences which probably qualifies me as a stubborn reader.

Genres/Categories/Content I Enjoy:

  • Realistic fiction
  • (most) Historical fiction
  • (selected) NonFiction and thoughtful memoirs
  • (selected) Literary fiction
  • (some) Women’s fiction (stories about women and issues that concern women)
  • (selected) Chick lit/romance/light women’s fiction (closed door or fade to black romance and limited profanity)
  • Issue-centered fiction (think Lisa Genova)
  • Fictionalized biographies (well-written and well-researched)
  • WWII era (especially stories about women on the homefront)
  • (selected) middle-grade and young-adult
  • Perfectly balanced character-driven/plot-driven stories
  • Epistolary format
  • Books about books, books about libraries/bookstores
  • stories of found family
  • Quirky characters
  • Complicated family drama as long as the story isn’t too sad or depressing.
  • I fall hard for a unique premise
  • Hopeful and satisfactory endings (reconciliation, redemption); I dislike ambiguous endings
  • Uplit (uplifting content)

See, even in my preferred genres, I’m a stubborn and picky reader!

Genres/Sub-genres I don’t read:

  • paranormal
  • occult
  • witchcraft
  • vampires
  • horror
  • magical realism
  • fantasy
  • true crime or crime fiction
  • thrillers
  • erotica
  • time travel or time slip
  • dark academia
  • nordic noir

Content I do not enjoy: (content warnings are written for me!)

  • violence
  • excessive profanity
  • drug use
  • violence against women (domestic abuse)
  • open-door (steamy) romance
  • heavily-driven authors’ agendas
  • over-written prose
  • abused, mistreated, or missing children
  • sad stories of sad people living sad lives

Sometimes, elements I’d rather avoid appear in my preferred reading. Usually, I can overlook it if I’m otherwise enjoying the story. Give me all the content warnings. I admit to being a PG 13 reader.

Since I’m a stubborn reader, do I ever read out of my comfort zone?

Well, yes I do! Sometimes, I’m sorry, and at other times, I’m pleasantly surprised. For example, I don’t usually read science fiction, but I decided to give Project Hail Mary a try (via audio) after reading some fabulous reviews. Now, it’s on my most recommended list. While I might resist reading westerns, I was captivated by News of the World and recommend it often. While I normally don’t read thrillers, I enjoy a side of thriller in histfic stories like The Nature of Fragile Things, The Rose Code, and The Girl From Guernica. During the Hunger Games hype, I succomed to FOMO and ended up reading the trilogy in one week and loved it! When West With Giraffes was released, I passed it up. Then a reading friend whose taste I trust urged me to read it, and now it’s in the running for my best read of the year. In fact, I loved it so much that I created a FREE Book Club Kit for it which you are welcome to use with your own book club.

Do you think I’m a stubborn or picky reader or do you think I’m a reader who knows her own reading tastes?
What are your reading tastes?
Are you a Stubborn Reader?

What is Your Reading Taste?

Why is it important to know your reading tastes?

It’s my opinion that knowing your reading tastes can lead to a more satisfying reading life. You will increase your enjoyment. You will avoid falling into a frustrating DNF (did not finish) situation. Knowing your tastes will help you spend your time and money wisely. There are more books to read than is possible to read in one lifetime, so narrowing that field will help ensure that you are choosing the right books (for you).

To identify your reading tastes, consider the following:

  • Fiction or nonfiction?
  • Realistic or fantasy?
  • Specific genres/categories that you enjoy or do not enjoy?
  • Historical or contemporary?
  • Favorite era?
  • Favorite locations/settings?
  • Character-driven or plot-driven? (see my post on the topic here)
  • Book length? (short stories, novellas, 300-400 pages, 500 page +)
  • Short story collection? Poetry collection?
  • Series? Stand-alone?
  • Audio, print, or digital?
  • Dual timelines?
  • Multiple perspectives?
  • Likable characters or unreliable narrators?
  • Triggers

Tip: Find your reading twin!
Identify a friend or a reviewer whose tastes align with yours. An exact match (twin) won’t be possible because no two persons read the same book, but you can find readers who share many of your tastes.


Are you a stubborn reader?
Do you read out of your comfort zone?
Do you know your reading tastes?
Do you think knowing your reading tastes is important?
Do you think knowing your reading tastes makes you a stubborn or picky reader?
Do we share any reading preferences?

Happy Reading Book Buddies!

“Ah, how good it is to be among people who are reading.”
~Rainer Maria Rilke

“I love the world of words, where life and literature connect.”
~Denise J Hughes

“Reading good books ruins you for enjoying bad ones.”
~Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

“I read because books are a form of transportation, of teaching, and of connection! Books take us to places we’ve never been, they teach us about our world, and they help us understand human experience.”
~Madeleine Riley, Top Shelf Text

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Unless explicitly stated that they are free, all books that I review have been purchased by me or borrowed from the library.

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  1. I like your idea of reader matchmaking – you could start a trend here !

    I find it easier to say what I don’t enjoy than what I do. Romance/chicklit/fantasy/YA/ horror are definite no-go genres for me,

  2. An interesting blog. I have widened my reading over the years but there are still some I avoid – books that excuse adultery, courtroom dramas, horror, westerns, family sagas, issue centred fiction, time slip and cosy family stories to name the ones that come to me as I write. But, as you say, there is always room for exceptions and I try not to limit my reading. Everyone does it I think but few articulate it as clearly as you have done.

  3. […] Odds ‘n ends about books and reading that caught my eye this week. You’ve probably seen some/most/all of them, but just in case: The Authors Guild, John Grisham, Jodi Picoult, David Baldacci, George R.R. Martin, and 13 Other Authors File Class-Action Suit Against OpenAI Who Needs Plot When You Have Vibes?—this approach to novel writing appeals to me, but almost every book described here would drive me nuts. Maybe I need to try one or three, though. The Early Days of American English: How English words evolved on a foreign continent. Anjili Babbar On The Rise of Irish Crime Fiction An interesting rebuttal to the publisher’s statement on the reading order for The Chronic (what?) cles of Narnia 5 Reasons We Love to Read—my local bookstore compiled a list of why their staff loves to read 10 Reasons to Leave a Book Review—I’d quibble with some of these items—but on the whole, a helpful post. Particularly for non-book bloggers. Authors and Reviews—may the tribe of Douglas Lumsden increase Arthurian inspired fiction: Where to start reading—So much temptation in so few words. A good companion list to the one Celeste posted a few months back, between the two of these, your Arthur-itch is sure to be scratched. The Wish Givers Cover Creation: The Process in Pictures—A deep dive into the process of making this cover Ranking books based on their first lines.—by Geaux Read Books, “Nothing heavy, just a fun video ranking books based on the first line of that book” Are You a Stubborn Reader? Know Your Reading Tastes […]

  4. Great post, Carol. I always say I am an eclectic reader as I do read a wide variety, but there are some genres I won’t read: Eroticia, Horror, Urban Fantasy, shifters/vampires/werewolves. I will occasional read a book with witches or paranormal, but is is very seldom. This makes me think about what I really enjoy.

  5. I know my reading taste are wide. There are very few things I wouldn’t read. When it comes to genres. romance is not something I look for. I don’t like fiction being heavily agenda driven, It some what expected in nonfiction but the standard for presenting both sides is high.
    That pretty much it. I know what I like and that a wide range.

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