As I’ve mentioned once or twice already, I’d like to bring more discussion posts to my blog this year. Discussion posts intimidate me because I’m not sure I have any worthwhile thoughts to share and I’m not particularly good at expressing myself well. That said, I’d like to give it a shot, so I’m kicking it off today by looking at how my reading tastes have changed over the last decade. I thought it was perfect timing and although I haven’t read as much in the last decade as I have in the last year itself, I do think my preferences have gone through some changes.
I just moved to Cambodia after living in Australia for five years and I was so happy when I discovered several secondhand bookstores where I discovered classic romance a la Nora Roberts. I also discovered my love for sci-fi with Michael Crichton, and realised I could read some Stephen King. I also dabbled briefly with Haruki Murakami but that didn’t last very long.
I moved to the UK to do my MA and once I submitted my thesis I discovered the joys of the public library! There I discovered Jojo Moyes’ “Me Before You” and I found my way to fantasy with Trudi Canavan and her Black Magician Trilogy. I loved the world building, the magic, the characters and I knew from then on that fantasy would have a solid place in my life! **I signed up for Goodreads this year but in large part still ignored it** 😂
This was a pretty tumultuous period in my life. I moved to Indonesia to live for the first time and started working at the UN, where I surprisingly discovered friends who introduced me to YA Dystopia with The Hunger Games. At that point I’d seen the movie but hadn’t touched the books but I devoured them. And then they introduced me to Divergent and I was hooked too. Pretty sure I tried reading other books too but these are what held my attention!
This was the year I started trying to read more Literary Fiction and gravitated towards works by Carlos Ruiz Zafon, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Isabel Allende, and Khaled Hosseini. I discovered a new all-time favorite book in Shadow of the Wind, and decided after reading One Hundred Years of Solitude that magical realism really wasn’t my jam. This also might’ve been the year I discovered the New Adult genre, and I’m sure I binged a lot of it but I didn’t share it on GR because I was lame.
I think these were the years I “experimented” more with different genres, but these were also the years that showed my general tastes. I participated in the Goodreads Reading Challenge for the first time in 2017. It’s also when I discovered these very popular authors: Sarah J. Maas, V.E. Schwab, Brandon Sanderson, Leigh Bardugo, Laini Taylor and my main man, Neil Gaiman. At the time I really didn’t know how popular they were. 2018 saw me reading an even wider mix of genres branching out from YA fantasy, although I still read a lot of that. I discovered my first all time favorite non-fiction: Killers of the Flower Moon and I also picked up my first graphic novel: Saga. I still read a lot of fantasy, but I mixed it up with more YA contemporaries and romances, which I’d never really read before. Reading Killers prompted me to look more into reading thrillers/true crime and I discovered Rachel Caine’s fantastic Stillhouse Lake Series. I also discovered another all time favorite in the gut-wrenching A Little Life. Never have I read a tome as quickly as I did this book.
This was probably the year that saw the most change and I think that’s fitting considering how much I was exposed to when I finally became part of the book community. I not only started reading from a wider range of genres, but I also read more diversely, LGBTQ+ and own voices novels. I even stepped out of my comfort zone to read paranormal thrillers and horrors (I never would’ve thought it’d happen considering I’m a total chicken). While my reading list prior to last year was dominated by YA fantasy, 2019 had a good mix of contemporaries, romance, and fantasy.
Looking back on this last decade of reading, it’s pretty clear to me that fantasy in all its forms is the way to my heart! Another thing that’s pretty clear is that depending on my mood I’m pretty open to reading all genres, well maybe except for horror, but I do prefer reading fantasy, contemporaries and romance over all others. So overall, not really that much change, but this was still a fun post to do while looking back over my last ten years of reading! I’m in my early 30s as we start this new decade and I’m genuinely curious to see if and how my reading tastes will change in the next ten years. Will I leave YA fantasy behind? Will I drift more towards contemporaries and romance? Will I continue to even read as much as I do now?! I’m looking forward to finding out 😍
Have your reading tastes changed in the last decade? Do you think it’ll keep changing or do you think you’re pretty set in your reading preferences?