Have you ever read a book and thought, “I can’t believe it’s over! I must read more books like this!” and then immediately purchased all the books by that author, or gone on a desperate search through Goodreads to find something similar?
Whenever I start reading a new genre I tend to go on binges where I only read books like the one I last finished until I finally reach a point where I feel like my brain has had enough. I do this with a lot of things, like video games, TV shows, and movies. I also do it with hobbies, which is why this poor blog fluctuates from daily posts to randomly infrequent posts. It’s like I use up all my drive to do the thing I’m enjoying and suddenly I just can’t do it anymore.
My latest binge was sparked by A Court of Thorns and Roses, which sent me down the path of reading all of Sarah J Maas’s books (although I’m getting close to reaching my limit after just finishing Heir of Fire) along with similar titles to hers. I’m currently reading an ARC of a book she wrote the cover blurb for called Ever The Hunted. It starts off in a very similar way to ACOTAR but isn’t quite so detailed or atmospheric, which makes me think that I’ll like it but not on the same level as Maas’s books. This is probably where I’ll stop my binge reading in the “teen girl with some kind of mystical power has to fight for a family that doesn’t deserve her against the corrupt government” genre.
Unfortunately, I forgot my book at work so I decided to read a book called Calvin instead. It’s about a teen boy named Calvin who has been diagnosed with schizophrenia when he begins to hear his childhood imaginary friend, Hobbes, talking to him in real life. He believes that the universe created him as the living incarnation of Calvin from the Calvin and Hobbes comics because he was born on the same day that the last comic strip was published, his parents name him Calvin, and his grandfather put a stuffed tiger named Hobbes in his bassinet. In an effort to get rid of his imaginary friend and to just be “normal”, he decides to make a pilgrimage to see the comic’s creator to convince him to draw a final comic where Calvin is 17 years old and is no longer able to see or hear Hobbes anymore.
This has sparked my newest genre binge which is basically focused around teens with mental health issues. I don’t think it matters exactly what the mental health issue is, as long as the way the main character deals with it is in an interesting way. I like the self exploration that these books encourage, and the openness with which they discuss mental health. I think it’s important that teens are able to read about kids who are facing the same issues as them, or who may be different in some way but have relatable lives.
I don’t know how long this particular binge will last. It could be just a few books, or it could last for months. I guess we shall see…
So, do you genre binge? Or do you only read a certain type of book? How do you determine what you are going to read next? And how many books can you read in a genre before you have to try something new?