Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Top Ten Tuesday - Books I Enjoyed That Are Outside of My Comfort Zone

Today I'm linking up with Top Ten Tuesday hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl which is all about lists.  Since lists are one of my favorite things this is one of my favorite linkups!  Today's topic is about Books Outside of My Comfort Zone That I Really Enjoyed.  I don't read outside of my comfort zone very often but every once in awhile I feel the urge to pick up something a bit different.  Sometimes I quickly reminded why exactly I typically stay in my comfort zone but the very best times are when I find something that I thoroughly enjoy and vow to read outside my comfort zone more often.  Here are a few of these books.

1.  Alice and Gerald: A Homicidal Love Story by Ron Franscell - While I watch a lot of true crime I've never actually read any until I picked this one up and ended up being completely fascinated.

2.  Shadow in the Wood by J.P. Choquette - This was the closest to horror I've ever read and while it was quite some time before I'd willingly go into the woods I did really enjoy this.

3.  Murder She Wrote: A Date with Murder by Jessica Fletcher, Donald Bain, and Jon Land - So mysteries aren't exactly out of my comfort zone but reading books based on a TV show has never really appealed to me.  I ended up getting this one and decided to give it a try and ended up really enjoying it.  It has all the comfort of an episode of Murder, She Wrote but is also a solid mystery.

4.  A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens - This was outside of my comfort zone because it was written by Dickens.  Dickens and I have a rather contentious relationship and I haven't been in much of a hurry to read anything else by him until I decided to pick this one up and I absolutely loved it.

5.  The Child by Fiona Barton - I have one hard and fast rule when it comes to mysteries and that is that no child be involved.  This violates that rule with the title alone but I ended up really enjoying it and have enjoyed other books by this author as well.

6.  Written in Red by Anne Bishop - Urban Fantasy has never really appealed to me but so many bloggers I follow seem to really like this series so I thought I'd give it a try and thoroughly enjoyed the audio.

7.  Before the Fall by Noah Hawley - I don't read disaster books usually but a friend offered this one to me and I thought I'd try it and I ended up really liking it.  I could definitely tell the author has a TV writing background.

8.  Coraline by Neil Gaiman - Gaiman is a bit bizarre and this one was probably the most bizarre of any of his books that I've read.  I'm not sure I would have enjoyed it as a child though and I'm quite sure it would freak my 9 year old out but as an adult reading this I rather liked it.

9.  Splintered by A.G. Howard - I got drawn in by the gorgeous cover and loved the author's take on Alice in Wonderland.  I haven't continued with this series because I really liked where the world ended at the end of this book but I probably will one of these days.

10.  Cinder by Marissa Meyers - There is very little about this book that really should have appealed to me.  I don't read dystopian, I don't read urban fantasy, I don't read YA but I ended up not only really enjoying it but continuing with the series.

What have you read and enjoyed that was outside of your comfort zone?


  1. When I was much younger, I was really hooked on crime nonfiction, and some of it was quite fascinating and riveting. Every now and then I watch some of the true crime on 20/20. Hope all is well! Hugs, RO

  2. A Christmas Carol was the only Dickens book I ever read and that was only because it was short! I don't read classics at all now. I'm also not into Neil Gaiman at all. I only read outside my comfort zone these days if the plot really appeals to me!

  3. I've read a few of these and enjoyed them. Maybe not so much out of comfort zone. I'm not a big true crime reader, but as you know, I have no issues with fictional crime. I loved SHADOW IN THE WOODS and also liked BEFORE THE FALL quite a bit. I've actually not read THE CHILD, but I've read others by her.

  4. I like a good outside-the-comfort-zone read, but you're right- sometimes they work and sometimes they don't! Nice when they do though. I still have to try Neil Gaiman.

  5. Cinder is on my 'must find more time in my day to read' pile :-D

  6. Murder She Wrote never appealed to you! That is like my favorite show I don't know if we can be friends now...lol. ;) :) I will admit I have only tried one of the books..shocking...lol.

  7. It is good to step out of your comfort zone every once in a while. I used to read a ton of true crime but haven't picked any up for a long time. I read from a pretty wide range of genres but everyone once in a while, I do realize I need to mix things up a bit more.

  8. It's been fun to see what is and is not within other readers' comfort zones. I was perfectly comfortable with Cinder, for example (OK, I don't much like dystopian generally, but the other aspects -- YA fantasy, fairytale retelling -- were completely in my comfort zone.) On the other hand, I too have a conflicted relationship with Dickens, and also loved A Christmas Carol. And I would say that Splintered was out of my comfort zone in terms of some of the mental illness stuff and how very weird it was in places, plus I don't care for love triangles... but I really enjoyed that book anyway.

  9. I think of myself as not much into urban fantasy or dystopian but the Anne Bishop books were really good and I liked the Cinder books too, I need to finish the series though.

  10. This is why I never say never when it comes to reading certain types of books. You really don't know when one will catch your eye and you end up enjoying it. I am so glad you took a chance with Anne Bishop's Others series. It's so awesome. :-)

  11. The nice thing about A CHRISTMAS CAROL is that it's short! I love it and re-read it every December to get me into the Christmas spirit :)

  12. Yay for Splintered! 💜

    I read A Christmas Carol every Yule, now. 🎄