Top 5 Wednesday -Tired Tropes

Hey guys! I just joined a new group on Goodreads called “Top 5 Wednesday”. This group gives out book-related topics for it’s members to write about each Wednesday. I probably won’t do it all the time, but today’s topic was one that I can rant about til the cows come home, so I thought I’d participate. 😉

(Interested in the group? Check it out HERE.)

Today’s topic is:
February 8th: Book Trends You’re Tired Of
What are some things you are tired of seeing that are trends in publishing? Maybe something that pops up on a lot of covers these days, or the popularity of certain tropes in a particular genre? Let it out!

My least favorite tired trope? Women who can’t focus.

A few months ago, I asked the members of my Reading Challenge Facebook group a very pertinent question: “Ok guys, recommendations please. Fiction books that have a woman (or girl) as the main character that do not have a single love interest…at all. Not even a friend with benefits. And not one where she spends the whole book bemoaning her singleness either. Genre: Mystery, Fantasy, SciFi, heck give me a western, I don’t care. YA is fine, but no children’s books; that’s cheating. — Why is this so hard to find?!? Male main characters without love interests are everywhere!” I ended up having to clarify that I meant an adult/older teen main character, since the first 3 recommendations were children.

Out of the 202 members of that group, I got 1 recommendation for a book that fit this qualification. ONE. Why is it so hard for people to write women who are able to focus on the task at hand? I get it in a romance novel or even a regular novel. But when the planet is in the middle of an alien invasion and the main character is so distracted by the guy she just met who is flying her to the battlezone that she can’t remember which weapons she should bring? That’s just stupid.

Literally 95% of the descriptions for books I look up on Goodreads that have an adult female main character end in some variation of “as they race against time, fighting danger and their growing attraction towards each other…” or “as the handsome new sheriff zeroes in on Claire…”. Really? Someone is about to die and you can’t keep it in your pants?

Example in point: ‘The Invisible Library’ by Genevieve Cogman. Now don’t get me wrong, I actually did enjoy this book overall. But (kind of spoilers?) you just found out that the most evil person in the history of evil is on the planet you are investigating and may or may not try to kill you…and you are having a debate about whether or not to have sex with your co-worker WHO YOU LITERALLY MET THAT DAY?!? What the heck?!?

I can’t figure out if these authors honestly think people won’t read a book with a female main character without her wanting to boink somebody or if they think all women are actually like that. Are they really ignorant enough to think that women won’t read a book without romance? Or that men won’t read a book with a female lead unless there’s sex involved? ::sigh::

Ok, rant over. I know people will respond to this with a ton of books that negate my point. Good! Please give me recommendations! I would love to read some books where they don’t cut into the action because their ‘poor female lead’ can’t decide if she loves her new partner or hates him.

(Yes, I DID notice that I only did one trope instead of five, but I hate it enough for five, so that counts, right? Lol! I’ll do better on the next one! 🙂 ~Jess)


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