Monday, July 18, 2016
Ramblings from the Stacks: Magic Words in Book Blurbs
I know if I see a menu item that involves "roasted garlic" J is most likely going to order it. Same goes for "balsamic". I'm slightly more complicated. Basically if he sees a main course with a description of something he can't imagine why anyone would want to eat that he figures I'll order it. Otherwise, it's dishes that involve "butternut squash", "horseradish", "balsamic", "caramelized onions", or "gorgonzola".
We have our anti-magic words too. Words that will make us run the opposite direction of a dish. Neither of us will order dishes with shrimp (I'm allergic, he thinks they're rats of the sea) or olives. I really really dislike olives. Like I have a full on rant about my dislike of olives.
All of this got me thinking about books. In all those pretty shiny new books that come out every week what words jump out at me, make me pick some books over others? These are some magic words that will make me grab a book that I know absolutely nothing.
2. Old diaries or letters - particularly if they're discovered hidden somewhere
3. Unexpected skeletons
4. Dilapidated or old houses (especially if the plot includes any or all of the above)
5. Starting a restaurant or bakery
6. Someone leaving their old life behind to figure out what they really want to do (as long as they're not leaving their children behind or wrecking a good marriage with a solid and understanding spouse who is devastated by this. I don't like those at all.)
7. 1920s anything - especially London or Paris
8. Homefront during either World War I or World War II
9. Books about books, libraries, or bookstores
10. Multi-generational relationships - I think this may because of my relationship with my grandparents but if there's a book about a grandchild/grandparent relationship I'm on board
On the other side of this are the words and themes that will make me fun away faster than a dish full of olives
2. Death of a child - especially if it's a just turned my head for a second kind of accident
3. Abduction stories that are told through the eyes of the victim
The good thing is I seem to have more Magic Words than Olive Words! What about you? Do you have certain words that will make you pick up a book that you know nothing about? Words that make you hesitate even if it's by a favorite author? And do you like olives? If so, are there particular ones I should try to get past my hatred of them?