Tuesday, April 18, 2017

10 Things That Make Me Instantly Want to Read A Book

This week's Top Ten Tuesday topic (hosted by The Broke and the Bookish) is a pretty open-ended one: what qualities make us instantly want to pick up a book? (Or at least look it up to check reviews, or add it to my to-read list.) My list is pretty random, but below are 10 things that never fail to make me take a look at a book!

1. A pretty cover. Oh yeah, I'm a cover-judger. I'm a very visual person and a beautiful cover will always get me to pick up a book and read the blurb. I especially love covers with illustrations (as opposed to pictures of real people) and pops of bright colors.

2. Books about books/libraries/bookstores. What reader doesn't appreciate a good bookish book?! Books are one of my favorite things in the whole wide world, and it's nice to read a book once in a while in which the main character is just as much of a bookworm as me. (Some favorites: "The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry" by Gabrielle Zevin, "The Thirteenth Tale" by Diane Setterfield, "The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society" by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows.)

3. Set in England, France, Ireland, Scotland or Russia. These are all places I desperately want to visit, and usually books set in these locales are imbued with a wonderful sense of atmosphere! (Some favorites: anything by Kate Morton and Tasha Alexander, "In the Woods" by Tana French, "A Gentleman in Moscow" by Amor Towles, "Outlander" by Diana Gabaldon, the list goes on and on.)

4. Set in Colorado or Hawaii. Because it's fun to read books set in places you're familiar with, and these are the two coolest places I've lived! (I've only come across a couple, so I'd love some recommendations!)

5. WWI/WWII. Despite my husband's military career I'm a bit of a pacifist, so I don't know what it is that draws me to war novels, but some of my all-time favorite books have been set during the world wars. Maybe it's that most of the stories feature themes of courage, strength and perseverance. (Some favorites: "All the Light You Cannot See" by Anthony Doerr, "I'll Be Seeing You" by Suzanne Hayes and Loretta Nyhan, "Letters to the Lost" by Iona Grey.)

6. Dogs. I'm a dog mama, and books about dogs (or with a dog on the cover) will always catch my eye. (Some favorites: "The Art of Racing in the Rain" by Garth Stein, "Until Tuesday: A Wounded Warrior and the Golden Retriever Who Saved Him" by Luis Carlos Montalvan, anything by W. Bruce Cameron.)

7. Sci-fi/fantasy. It's funny, a few years ago I'd probably never picked up a book in one of those genres, but now they're quite possibly my favorites and I actively seek them out. Any well-recommended sci-fi or fantasy novel (especially if it has to do with something like magic or time travel) catches my interest. (Some favorites: "Red Rising" by Pierce Brown, "Ready Player One" by Ernest Cline, "Uprooted" by Naomi Novik.)

8. Set in a cold place. This gets me every time! I love reading books that take place in locations like Alaska and Antarctica! I wouldn't actually want to be one of the book characters freezing my butt off in rugged remoteness, but I definitely enjoy living vicariously through them. (And I do totally want to visit Alaska and take an Antarctica cruise one day.) (Some favorites: "To the Bright Edge of the World" by Eowy Ivey, "Where'd You Go, Bernadette" by Maria Semple, "Burial Rites" by Hannah Kent.)

9. Recommended by a trusted fellow reader. I have a couple friends (plus my mom) and follow of a few bloggers who have pretty similar reading tastes to me. And if they love a book, I'm 100% going to check it out.

10. 4+ stars on Goodreads. If I type in the title of a book that intrigued me and it pops up with a rating of over 4 stars, it almost definitely goes on my to-read list. Of course I don't always agree with other readers, but generally a rating over 4 stars means it's going to be well-liked by almost every type of reader.


  1. I am with you on most of these!I love a good WWII book, and your setting choices are all ones I love to read. Pretty covers get me every time :) Great list!

  2. I agree with so many of these! A good cover, takes place in Europe, set during wartime - I love all of these!

  3. Great list and it makes me realize I forgot some of mine. Like you, I love books set in wintery, cold places - especially thrillers and horror. I also tend to love books set in London. Of course we would both include doggy ones! I just finished an ARC last night you have to check out. It's called "About a Dog" by Jenn McKinlay. She does cozy mysteries but this is her first romance. There is the cutest dog who steals the show who even though she is a pit/boxer mix, she reminds me of your Alohi. Her name is Tulip and she steals the book. I think it releases in May.

    1. I just looked it up and added it to my to-read list. Thanks for thinking of me! :) The puppy on the cover is so adorable -- I can see why it caught your eye!

  4. I like a lot of your choices! Covers are hitting a lot of lists today, including mine. And I will take a good look at anything fantasy, anything about books/libraries/bookstores, and books (especially mysteries or romances) set in England, Scotland, Wales, or Ireland.

  5. Yes to many of these! I'm a sucker for a pretty cover. Of course, it doesn't always mean I will read a book, but I might take a closer look at one that has one. I also tend to be attracted to war books for some reason. And fantasy. Great list, Lindsay!


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