Thursday, April 12, 2012

WWR, Thursday: Christine!

Sorry for the delay.  I could site all sorts of valid reasons for not posting this sooner, but I'll be honest: Cape May, ocean, and wine tastings.  Those are the real reason this feature is coming to you on a Thursday night.  So without further ado, say hello to Christine of The Happily Ever After

What does this woman read? 
The majority of what I read is fiction, but I do read nonfiction now and then. I read from a variety of genres but romance--whether contemporary, historical, romantic suspense or paranormal--is hands down my favorite. I love the star-crossed lovers theme and have a particular affection for fairy-tale retellings. Other genres I read are young adult fiction, urban fantasy, straight fantasy, crime fiction, mysteries, general fiction and graphic novels. Graphic novels are a new source of reading enjoyment for me, having read my first one only a year ago or so. I've read fantasy, contemporary, non-fiction, memoir and classic graphic novels, including adaptations of Shakespeare! Go figure!

In nonfiction, I enjoy memoirs, books on gardening, health & lifestyle and cookbooks. Yes, I am naming cookbooks here because I often sit down and read them cover to cover as I would a novel. I also love a good craft encyclopedia.

What turns you on as a reader? 
I can be pretty forgiving regarding the depth and complexity of a book as long as I'm entertained. However, what really grabs my attention and favor are books with complex, consistent world building and character driven stories in which the main characters show emotional depth and growth. I love when a character has obvious flaws and insecurities and learns a bit about themselves through the conflict of the story.

Speaking of conflict, I love books with 'conflicting' conflicts. Give me shades of gray where the lines between right and wrong, good and evil are not so clear. Those types of stories make me really think about the characters' choices and second guess what I think I would do if I were in their shoes.

Ultimately I'm generally thrilled with a book in which well developed characters have experienced some valuable life lessons in the course of their story. Combined with the added bonus of a meaningful romance built around quality world building and character growth, and I am one happy reader.


Angiegirl said...

I just love Christine and her blog. And what a fun feature! I'm happy to discover it.

I wholeheartedly agree on the "conflicting conflicts" and the depth of characterization.

Shannon said...

Christine, thanks again for joining me here at WWR this week! I completely agree with your comments about character growth. Flawed characters are the most interesting, they have depth. I want to see them learn and grow throughout the story. They don't need to "fix" their flaw, but become stronger of more secure because of or in spite of it.

Angiegirl, welcome to WWR! I'm glad you enjoyed the feature.

Janet said...

Followed you over, Christine, from Happily Ever After! Your reading tastes are very eclectic - much like mine - and I usually gravitate toward more character driven work, too! I'm also a cookbook reader - even borrowing them from the library to have a read ;)

Thanks for introducing me to What Women Read - I'll be back!

Li said...

I have read cookbooks before too - and I'm not even that fond of cooking! I just point out the good recipes ;-)

Great feature - it's always interesting to learn more about what works for someone.

Christine said...

Oh yay! Comments! :)
Thanks for stopping over here, everyone!

Angie... Awwww thank you! I feel the SAME about you! I'm not surprised you agree with the "conflicting" conflicts and depth of characterization--we love so many of the same books!

Shannon .. Thanks for inviting me to post at WWR this week.

Janet.. Thanks for visiting. I used to read only romance and YA and tend to STILL read them most of all.. but am glad that I'm more eclectic these days. Variety is the spice of life! ; )

Li ... ha ha! I love that you are a cookbook reader even though you're not much of a cook! It's the pictures, right? I go crazy for a well photographed cookbook of things I like to EAT.. whether I ever make a single recipe from it or not!

luv46kdz said...

Hi there Christine! Nice blog Shannon : ) now following. I find myself being real fussy in my reading. I love mystery, thrillers, pnr, uf, some chic lit, but lately I'm on a quest for that amazing book that makes me just go wow.

Tomes Devotee

Anonymous said...

Lovely feature!! :D

I'm so with Christine on the Conflicting Conflicts thing, because it usually means that the characters are more developed.

I love seeing Flawed people fall in love.

Also, cookbooks are awesome to read! :D I love books on dessert :D

Christine said...

luv46kdz.. Hi Paula! Thanks for following me over here to Shannon's blog today.

I love those WOW books, too.

Alex.. I love reading dessert cookbooks too! Just not when I'm trying to eat super healthfully! Then they make me sad. Lol!

Brandy said...

Interesting questions and answers! You read a lot like I do. A bit of everything all over the place. :) I tend to agree with you about characterization and a character driven plot.

Shannon said...

Thank you to everyone for stopping by!

I love cookbooks, as well. I have quite the collection. I love spending some time on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon going through them and picking out recipes for the week. Actually, if you love cookbooks you should check out Every recipe that I have tried from this site has been at the very least "good." She always has a little story to go along with the dish.

naida said...

"Cape May, ocean, and wine tastings"....sounds great!
Interesting WWR post, I like the star-crossed lovers theme as well.
I also like it when I am made to think about characters choices while reading.

orannia said...

Great post Christine!

Give me shades of gray where the lines between right and wrong, good and evil are not so clear.


Christine said...

Thank you all so much for taking the time to visit Shannon's blog! It's wonderful to see all these comments! :D

Brandy..We do have a similar pattern for reading all over the genre spectrum, with a bit of an emphasis on romance, right? Great minds and all that. ;)

Shannon.. I visit SimplyRecipes every couple of weeks or so to see what Elise is cooking. I love her posts. Did you know there's a SimplyRecipes app for the iphone?

naida.. I agree! I love when an author makes me pause and think about a character's actions or decisions--especially if I'm not so sure what I would do in those specific scenarios. Those stories tend to stick with me longer after having read the last page.

orannia .. Seems we all like those shades of gray in our stories!

Thanks for inviting me to participate in WWR, Shannon! This was a lot of fun! :)