Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and The Bookish in 2010 and was moved to Artsy Reader Girl in 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. Each week a new topic is chosen, this week’s is: Books I Enjoyed That Are Outside of My Comfort Zone (i.e., a genre you don’t typically read or subject matter you’re not usually drawn to).
As a self-proclaimed emotional sap, I naturally gravitate toward books that have happy or neutral endings. Seldom will I choose a book that is very dark or depressing in theme, as they can have an impact on my emotions for a long time after reading them. For this reason, there are a few genres that I generally tend to stay away from (crime, horror, thriller etc.). Listed below are books that broke the mould from what I usually read, yet adored anyway.
Let’s get started!
EMOTIONAL / GRAPHIC NOVEL / POPULAR SCIENCE
Me Before You – This book broke me emotionally. A poignant story of enemies to lovers and the ultimate loss, this is a story that has stuck with me for years. I wasn’t even able to watch the film without sobbing like a baby!
Mooncakes – As my first graphic novel, Mooncakes was one of the best ones I could have started with – in my uneducated opinion. Delightfully cute graphics, characters I adored and an abundance of diverse rep, this was a novel I was glad I decided to try!
Incognito – As a neuroscience nerd and major, reading popular science books on the brain is about as far from fun as I can think of. I end up getting frustrated at the level of layman’s terms that morph in to being almost scientifically incorrect. Yes, it’s snobbish of me but I can’t help it. This book was surprisingly good though. I received it as a gift and began to read it out of obligation but soon became hooked!
SCI-FI / CLASSIC / DOMESTIC FICTION / VERSE
Aurora Rising – While I adore fantasy and paranormal romance, I don’t often venture in to the Sci-Fi genre and have only been dipping my toes in recently. I adored this book with its similarities to Star Wars (the movies were my childhood). I honestly don’t know why I hadn’t decided to read this genre earlier!
The Alchemist – Classics and I have a hate-hate relationship. They’re usually too long, slow and brutally descriptive. The Alchemist is the only one (besides for Pride and Prejudice) that has caught my attention in a good way. Maybe it’s also because it’s so delightfully short.
Big Little Lies – I met Liane Moriarty accidentally once, at my University, and wasn’t aware of who she was! The loss is completely my fault. I adore her books! She’s one of the only authors that write general fiction that I actually enjoy reading. I still haven’t gotten around to the TV show though – I still arrogantly think the book is better seen in my head than on the screen.
The Art of Taxidermy – As my first verse novel I wasn’t sure what to expect. The way in which Kernot was able to portray so much while saying so little still leaves me a bit in awe. This is a macabre, poignant coming-of-age story that will stay with me for years! Plus, I loved the Aussie references in it.
AUDIOBOOK /MEMOIR / SELF HELP
Becoming – I couldn’t think of a better book to start my audiobook journey with than this one. I’m only half-way (it’s ONLY 19 hours long…) but I’m completely enthralled by Michelle Obama’s honest, compelling story. While this could be considered as a memoir, I have categorised this as an audiobook due to the fact that I can’t stand most audiobooks. Somehow hearing a memoir from their own voice doesn’t annoy me as much.
Confessions of an Expat in Paris – This book was one of the funniest and entertaining I’ve read all year. I won this as an ARC and wasn’t expecting much. Lesage blew me away though. She’s hilariously funny and completely relatable. I adored her memoir and think I will try a few more just to prolong my ‘expat experience’ by living vicariously through her.
The Happiness Project – It was the cover that caught my attention in this book. As well as the fact that I’d heard of their podcast. As a cover judger and podcast fanatic I had to give this a try, despite it being classed as a self help book. While I usually tend to avoid self-help books for their cliched wisdom (in my cynical opinion) this one was worth the chance!
// have you read any of the books on my list? do you avoid the same genres as me? //