Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday -- Top Ten Book Turn-Offs You Encounter While Reading

More information about Top Ten Tuesday and future topics can be found here.

This week's topic is about the things we encounter while we are reading and it totally turns you off. Different from the topic we did this summer about things that turn us off before we even START the book --topics/words that will make us NOT pick it up.


Daisy's Picks:


Insta-love: OMG, one of my biggest pet peeves EVER! You don't just meet someone and instantly love them. Seriously. Love takes time, there is such a thing as instant-lust, but not love. So please, can this stop being a plot point?

Animal cruelty: Seriously, you can kill off pretty much everyone in a novel and I won't cry (well, I've been known to cry over a couple Harry Potter related deaths), but if an animal is sick or gets killed or even slightly mistreated I WILL CRY. And I HATE when this is used as a plot device! Having an animal in a novel always scares me.

(Seconded by Jana: Animal cruelty has me throwing books in the trash can, having horrible nightmares, and crying like the biggest baby ever. I won't even read a book if an animal is mentioned in the back cover summary, because I am scarred for life. I boycott authors who kill animals. And sometimes they do it in the most graphic, horrifying ways! I am just not ok with it, and I feel as though it encourages it in young adults. It's not cool to hurt an animal, so stop making it seem like it is. Just thinking about this gets my blood boiling. I don't think I feel stronger about anything related to books.)

Jamie's Picks:


Boy Saviors: Okay, I get that love can help people along in life and YEAH in some cases it CAN save you but I'm talking about flimsy romances where the ONLY THING that saves the girl is some guy. I like when something is a catalyst and THEN someone battles to save THEMSELVES. Does this make sense? I feel like I'm rambling! But bottomline: THEY ARE LIKE 16 year old boys...not saviors! Do you KNOW 16 year old boys? lol My nephew can't even pick up after himself.

Unexpected Forced Love Triangles That Are SUPER obvious
: I'm ok with a well done love triangle (but god CAN EVERYTHING STOP HAVING THEM) but I really hate when it's more of a distraction and annoyance when some pointless love triangle comes in and it's SO obvious what's going to happen.

Super Possessive & Controlling Guys You Are Supposed To Root For: I'm not one who will hate a book just because it contains something I HATE or think is wrong because let's face it...these things happen in life and stories need to be told. So possessive and controlling dudes? EW! But that's fine. It's happens in life. BUT BUT BUT when I'm supposed to ROOT for this guy and find him swoonworthy? NO NO NO NO.

Absentee Parents: Seriously? Not a single parent in the picture? At all? No responsible adults at least? Get outta here! I know in SOME storylines it will make sense (stories ABOUT absentee parents) but I hate when I'm seeing this convenient things where parents don't exist to make the story actually happen.

Repetition of certain words or descriptions:
How hard is it to find a different word or way to describe someone? If Stephanie Meyer used "velvet/velvety" ONE MORE TIME I was going to kick a puppy. I just hate some of these stupid descriptions of the male lead characters that keep getting tossed around the WHOLE novel. STAHP IT.

A Virginal Character Is Used In Ways I Hate: Ok, listen up. If I'm reading a book and you use a character who is a virgin to represent the character who is more moral and not a "slut"...I'm going to throw your book. Just because a character HAS sex does not make them a slut and a character who is a virgin isn't all that is pure and right or whatever. All it means is that the character has not had sex. All sorts of DIFFERENT kinds of people are virgins.That's all. Also, please don't make characters who are virgins as being weirdos. Come on.

Julia's Picks:

I agree with Jamie on Love Triangles, but after feeling over saturated, I just can't stand them at all right now. Can I get a break please?! Not everyone wants to be the center of two guys attentions. And, like Jamie said, SO MANY seemed forced and shoehorned in. I can just see the publisher going "This is great and all, but I think this best friend character should really be another love interest. Make it happen"

Surprise! That book that you have really been loving these past 2/3 isnt going to wrap up in the next 25 pages because IT'S A SERIES! I can't tell you how many times this has happened and I immediately go into RAGE MODE! I love series, BUT I also firmly believe that a book, especially a first book, should be able to stand on its own enough to call it a book and not just "part 1". I want some resolute and a little tease at whats to come. I am more forgiving if its the second book or greater, but still. I want a book that I can say, "Wow. That was a great book. I can't wait to read more in this series." See Cinder/Scarlet.

Tell us what YOUR book turnoffs are? Agree with any of ours?


64 comments:

  1. I have controlling "romantic" interests on my list, too, as well as love triangles. Great list!

    Sara at The Page Sage

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  2. I totally agree with the absentee parents! I have that on my list as well!

    Nikki H @ Take Me Away...

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  3. Great list. Instant love, repetition, and unresolved endings also bug me.

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  4. Instalove needs to go far, far away. I also hate the current trend of alternating narrators in place of the tried and true third-person omniscient. First-person present tense is also a huge pet peeve of mine, particularly when the story in absolutely no way merits that tense/POV combo.

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  5. I definitely feel more sad when horses die in war stories than when people do. And dog deaths are just unacceptable.

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    1. SEE!?! Exactly. In movies, I always fear for the horses more than the people. People choose to fight and hurt each other. Animals don't.

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    2. Same! Animal deaths make me infinitely more sad than hum ones...

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    3. I'm with all of you. I actually find it's even harder for me to take the death of an animal when it's blatantly because they're doing what a human needs them for - like horses in a war - or because they're trying to save their human. Can. Not. Take. It. (SPOILER - like the dog in Under the Dome - if you have this issue, don't read the book.)

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  6. Some great choices here. Controlling guys suck. And animal cruelty makes me want to use the books I find it in as kindle to light a fire. I also agree about the series thing. Nice to see so many different issues being brought up.

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  7. Good choices here. I also included books that are first in a series when you don't expect it, and overly controlling guys... Fun (but frustrating!) topic. :)

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  8. I am okay with instalove as long as it is well-written, but yeah instalove could be worth cringing.

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  9. I think I have seen Insta-love and Love Triangles on every single list I have read so far. Hopefully the bookish world will realise soon that we just don't like them!

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  10. I can't believe I forgot about insta-love?! It is a major turn-off for me, as well. I also like that you have included missing parents and the virgin stereotypes. Great topic!

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  11. Really great lists! I'm new here, and I send you the confirmation for your 'Top ten Tuesday'. Really good blog. Great topic :)

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  12. I completely agree with absentee parents, except for the fact that the problem is a real-life issue. It must be explored in some novels.

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  13. Great list! I agree with a lot of your points, especially with the insta-love and the obsessive love interest.

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  14. I have a lot of these on my list too! Insta-love, absentee parents, controlling love interest. All things I don't like. I love this topic...really got me thinking!

    My Friends Are Fiction

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  15. YES to all of these!! My dislike of Edward in Twilight came directly from his obsessiveness and controlling nature. Clearly I'm Team Jacob. haha

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  16. I went for insta-love, cavemen attitudes and repetition too. I don't mind insta-love in paranormal books though as werewolves etc sniffing out their one true mate sort of works but the author has to work really hard to make it believable in other situations.

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  17. Oh man, I forgot animal cruelty. That's a non-negotiable for me. Animals dying in general.

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  18. OH MY I AGREE about the parents. That makes me crazy. I am always amazed at the lack of authority figures.

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  19. Boy saviors! So true! I have a habit of imagining everyone as my age even when they are supposed to be teens to overcome the unlikeliness of boys and girls this age overthrowing the government and saving the world. Great list!

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  20. Animal cruelty should totally have been on my list. I think I just haven't read anything with it in it for so long that I forgot. Also, unnecessary series make me a little stabby too.

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  21. Good list.

    I didn't think about the absent parents/adult but yeah there does seem to be quite a few books where the parents or any adults are no where to be seen.

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  22. The lack of parents allows the writer to make an independent-but-young character, but it does come up quite often doesn't it? Sick parents, dead parents, busy parents, neglectful parents...

    Great list!

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  23. Yes! Insta-love, boy saviors, and controlling love interests may all cause me to put a book down.

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  24. excellent list. insta-love is one of my absolute top pet peeves and it happens ALL THE TIME in YA. so annoying!

    in other news, i have just returned to blogging after a long hiatus and am so happy to find this nice meaty meme. looking forward to more top 10 tuesdays!

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  25. I'm not a fan of love triangles most of the time, but oddly enough, I don't mind insta-love. I can get why authors might go for absentee parents, but it really can be annoying. And yes to unnecessary series! Great list!

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  26. My pet peeves relate more to the language, grammar, etc. than to a certain part of any story. I dislike certain genres for the peeves I have but I don't really read them in the first place.

    Marianne from Let's Read

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    1. Bad writing/ unrealistic dialogue is a HUGE turnoff for me.

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  27. ABSOLUTE YES to the one about killing animals-- I totally cried when they shaved Aslan in The Chronicles of Narnia, though I can't think of any books with "killed" animals...and I don't want to! O.O

    Yes to boy saviors, creepy possessive guys I'm supposed to root for.. and the love triangles thing. I can TOTALLY see the publisher doing that, LOL! Love you guys' list! (:

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  28. This is my first time doing a book meme! Super excited! Sad that I forgot insta-love though. I think it could be okay in some well written paranormal books, but in stories resembling real life, it just does not work...

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  29. I have animal cruelty and controlling love interest on my list too.
    Laura @ Through Razzberry Colored Glasses

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  30. We have a lot in common. Actually a lot of the bloggers i follow posted similar things. You would think if the majority of readers who spoke up didn't like something people would stop writing stories about that sort of thing...hmmm

    Ashley
    Books Buying Beauty

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  31. I totally agree with all of these! I must confess I included some of these on my list and I actually quoted Jamie about Sluts vs. Virgins. Well said!

    My Top Ten Tuesday.

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  32. I totally agree with you about the animal death and cruelty thing. I hate that more than anything, and I also will refuse to read that person anymore. Unless it is Stephen King, then I just skip all those pages of the book.

    And I hate controlling male characters too.

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  33. I put death of an animal character, on my list too!

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  34. I forgot to add 'finding out the book you're reading is part of a series in the last 30 pages' SUCH a pain haha
    Great list - as usual :)
    My TTT

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  35. Good choices, all of them. Oh, I ran into the "finding out the book is in a series" thing in a book I just reviewed (posting Wednesday, actually.) I mean, I knew it was a series, but it's a mystery series. So shouldn't the mystery be, like, SOLVED maybe? Very irritating to realize that the mytery continued on into at least book 2 -- which isn't written yet.

    As for love triangles, I'm getting thoroughly fed up with them! All your other picks are turn-offs for me, too.

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  36. Unnecessary violence, cheating, abuse of any kind.

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  37. I totally agree about the girl who gets saved by a boy. Related to that is the girl who has no personality or interests of her own and is only defined in terms of whichever boy happens to be in the picture.

    Also, I tend not to be into books that are super preachy about religion or take an obvious stance either way. Like, I'm not super religious, but I don't mind if characters in the book are religious as long as it's just something that is part of their life or defines them, but isn't trying to preach to me (see: The Dark Divine series by Bree Despain). On the other hand, I'm not a fan of books that bash religion, because even though religion isn't important to me, I have friends and family to whom it is important and they shouldn't be bashed for that.

    That comment was way longer than intended... :)

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  38. Oh my gosh - LOVED your list! I totally agree with your love triangle part. I hate when they introduce characters just to "foil" the relationship.

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  39. Every time I read a book with absentee parents, it makes me think of a book I read as a kid (I want to say it was Emily's Runaway Imagination, but it could have been one of the Ramona books, too), where the little girls are playing dress up and pretending they live on a farm, and the first thing they do is figure out how to get rid of the parents, and then the narrator explains to the reader that this was always the first step in children's games, to figure out why the parents aren't around. Apparently it's true for YA as well!

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  40. Excellent list! I can't handle animals being harmed either - I get that there are some great stories that involve animals getting hurt, but I don't care. Not for me. Great topic - really made me think!

    Backlist Books

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  41. At first I didn't think I could even come up with *10!* items to list, but then, once I started working on it, I realised I had *12!* Laughs. I must admit, I do not run into the love triangle issue that often, if at all, so I think that goes directly to the books I read might bring up different subjects than the ones that you read!? Not sure. I do agree on the romantic level of interest, that if the sparks are not even defined, fleshed out, or even substantiated then it feels 'put together' for me as well! :(

    I agree with the absent parents OR parents who are only a hollow version of parents -- I am sure you know what I mean!? Generally I find this in films, but sometimes novels make the mistake of only having parents 'placed' in the story rather than having an active part!?

    I hear you on the 'first in a series' where its a debut and its ending on a cliffhanger!? I read two of those this year alone, and I was like, "ooh not again!" It does irk me I must admit! I wanted to know soo much more!!

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  42. I agree with the forced love triangle and all points on Jamie's lists. Yea, where are the parents in some stories? Off saving the world and neglecting their kids, I guess.

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  43. I like how the Daisy and Jana talked about animal cruelty, and then Jamie said she was going to kick a puppy b/c of Stefenie Meyer. LOL!

    I don't think that animal cruelty in books pushes youth in that direction. In fact, the opposite. When horrible people do horrible things in books, kids take note that that makes you horrible.

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    1. LOL!!! I would never realllyyyyy kick a puppy. EVER. EVER. PROMISE GUYS. Pleaaaase don't kick me out of the blog :P

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  44. I will DNF a book in a heartbeat if I come across animal cruelty. And I'll probably stay away from the author at all costs after that.

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  45. I hate insta-love too. :P Actually I have some insta-love in one of my books, and it's actually supposed to be an early sign that the alternate world in which the insta-love happens is not exactly what it appears to be. (Happily the character has a real-love experience in the same book, and that's handled completely differently, with awkwardness, doubt, and sweating over whether they offended each other. Heh.)

    I hope my book with a dog and a rabbit owned by the child main character doesn't make people think I'm going to kill them. I won't. :)

    And I've been super careful to never associate lack of sex with "purity." I hate that. I know there are characters who feel this way, but I don't think that point of view needs any help being reinforced by society, so I stay away from it.

    BTW I tried to click "learn more about top ten Tuesday here" because I'd really like to get in on it, but it went to an error page. :/

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  46. There was a time that I used to read books with boy saviors and I couldn't take it, so I couldn't agree more! And repetitive words! I remember when I was reading the Vampire Academy series, Richelle would always use the word "fierce" to describe Dimitri and I hated it. But all in all, great list!

    Karla @ Silver Readings

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  47. This was such an interesting post! I really liked and I'm sorry I wasn't able to make it in time!

    Ps. I've just started my book blog, so I'll leave you the link if you want to stop by! :)
    http://frannieinthepages.blogspot.com/

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  48. Utterly predictable story lines drive me nuts. I realize you can do the same/similar thing and put your own spin on it, but that's just it, put your own spin on it!

    But definitely agree on the Insta-Love one too.

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  49. I loved your answers and agree with most of them - especially animal deaths and instant love, ugh.

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  50. I guess I'm standing alone on this one, but animal deaths don't phase me while a character death can be devastating. To me there's no comparison. Human vs animal... I feel for the human every time.

    Repetition is my big pet peeve. Glad to see that one mentioned. It just smacks of lazy writing.

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  51. My first time participating, and it was a lot of fun! I'm also glad to see that a lot of people agree on some of my turn-offs :)

    I didn't include animal cruelty on my list as it's sort of covered by my first one (violence and gore), but it is definitely one of my turn-offs. I bawled so much reading Deathly Hallows and even had to put it down for a bit because of poor Hedwig :(

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  52. Huge yes to Jamie's answers! Absentee parents, controlling guys, slut shaming - hate them.

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  53. If animal abuse in YA novels encourages the behaviour in young adults, then it would follow that books about drug addiction will make teens do drugs and books about teen pregnancy will encourage teens to have babies and books with homosexual characters will turn the world's youth gay... right?

    How many people who don't want to read books with animal abuse are actually vegetarians/vegans? I'm just curious.

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  54. one of my biggest pet peeves in a book, is when the author thinks it would be "cool" to use French in the book, but then fucking doesn't bother to get it checked by someone who actually speaks it, and then it's all wrong. i'm a native French speaker and it bothers me to no end!!! i mean come on! how hard can it be to find someone to double check your few lines in another language? it makes you look especially retarded when the character is supposed to be fluent in that language... -_-

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    1. lol. xD Your comment made me crack up. It reminds me of when characters on American shows are supposed to be fluent/native speakers in Chinese but their accents suck. But this is book stuff, which could have easily been checked.

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  56. These are so great!! I DEFINITELY agree with the "Insta love" and that was my biggest concern with the Twilight series! I also agree on the absentee parent thing! That's what I loved about John Green's "The Fault in Our Stars." There were two sets of very involved parents in that book, and I loved it all the more for that fact. Great list and collaboration with other bloggers!

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