When browsing in a book shop, what makes you shove the book back, with undue force, whence it came? I've made a list:
- Any book starting in the mind of a crazed psychopath as he watches his next, invariably young and female, victim. I have no desire to find out what happens next. I know I won't like it.
- Misery memoirs. I read for pleasure.
- Fiction written in the present tense. Just annoying.
- Anything in which vampires or werewolves form a council. Although these councils might at least collect the bins on time, unlike the one in my area. (Thank you for that one, Steve Jensen.)
- Any novel which starts with a description of ‘the boy’, ‘the man’ or ‘the woman’, as in ‘The boy, his feet scarring the pristine sand, wandered along the deserted stretch of shore’. For Pete’s sake, tell us his name! You’re going to have to eventually, why not straight away?
- Books about circuses, which are curiously devoid of any real circus acts, leading me to suspect the writer has never been to a circus in his life.
- Novels with a young, affluent, able-bodied male narrator, who does nothing but whinge in a supposedly amusing fashion about a) having to go to work and b) not getting enough sex. I am meant to sympathize, and I do not. Not even a little bit.
- Fantasy involving elves, or anything colourably similar, such as leprechauns or fairies. Or faeries, faes, pixies and what I have just seen described as other wee folk. No, no!
What about yours?