A little bit about books, a little bit about life.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Booking Thru stories

If you’re anything like me, one of your favorite reasons to read is for the story. Not for the character development and interaction. Not because of the descriptive, emotive powers of the writer. Not because of deep, literary meaning hidden beneath layers of metaphor. (Even though those are all good things.) No … it’s because you want to know what happens next?
Or, um, is it just me?

This was our question for "Booking Through Thursdays".

I am finding it hard to answer. Can I say "it depends?" I think it's the story MOST of the time, but I am also addicted to series mystery novels where the same characters are in every book. I love the characters, the settings--I don't know why I fell in love with the settings of the mysteries (it's a mystery to me. LOL...okay that was bad ), but I have. I love Tess Monaghan's Baltimore, and Stephanie Plumb's Trenton, NJ, and Temperance Brennan's Quebec. I could go on and on, but you get the picture. These characters are my friends and their homes places I want to visit.

But a good story is a good story, and it is very.... emotional, for lack of a better word. When you are reading a good book and get caught up in the story-line and are feeling the happiness, despair, loneliness, amazement, fright that takes place because of the "story", well, there is no better fun, relaxation, escape (insert your adverb here) than that. Wanting to know what happens next, but also feeling sad because you know you're nearing the end of the book, and you don't want that either.

There is nothing better than a good story! I still think my answer would have to be "it depends"
I think sometimes it's hard to separate the two, the story just for itself and the characters ... because don't you come to love the characters, or at least have some connection with them, because of the story? If the story is no good, then you really have no bond to the characters. The two go hand in hand, but it's a good story that first grabs you and holds you. If I look at it that way, then story has to be first, or else why would you keep on reading?

Thank you for the introspection today, now I know, it's the story that gets you. Or me, as the case may be. No more depends for me... I have stepped off the fence.


Lisa said...

I love your answer(s)! lol Its the story for me with the characters a close second. And it helps if I like the characters, although I can still like the story even if I don't like the characters most of the time. Thanks for stopping by my blog! Have a good Thursday! :)

Melody said...

Yep, I guess it depends on what books I read. But a good story should have good plot & engaging characters to suck me in. :)

Smilingsal said...

Yep, it's the story.

Marie said...

Great answer! I need one or the other, story or characters- I love memoirs and slow, character-driven books but a great page-turner is hard to turn down :-)

phantom inkheart said...

Oh I definitely agree about bonding with the characters, and that a good story-line helps with that too.
And about mysteries; I am not a mystery-type person at all, but I love the Sherlock Holmes stories. I came across them a few years ago when I decided I wanted to read more classics, and I completely fell in love with the period and the ways he solved the crimes/mysteries, and the villains and of course, Holmes and his ever faithful friend Watson. I can't even begin to count how many times I've thought to myself how I'd love to be on Baker Street. :)

Thanks for the comment!

Yvonne said...

I agree with you. I, too, love continuing characters in the mysteries.

Nicole said...

Yummy! I was directed to your cooking blog first. I want to blog about my cooking too, but I always end up talking about books. I see why you picked up on my pie/filling example, and I guess I see why it ran across my mind. I guess I think in food!

But you are totally right in, it does depend. I think I automatically think in terms of what I read most, but it can vary a little bit according to the genre.

Josette said...

Hi there!

Well for me, the story has to be gripping. It has to keep me glued to the pages, to every sentence and every word. I also like to keep guessing the plot and how it'll all end! :D

bethany said...

oh yes it is such a combo of all three...but the story is the most important to me.

great answer!!!

phantom inkheart said...

Hey that game sounds interesting. :) I haven't heard of that children's novel, because I haven't really ventured outside of the original stories just yet with my Holmes fandom. But I definitely will give a look around online for it, and at the library as well. :D Thanks for the heads up on it!