I enjoy stories that give a diverse range of characters. Characters who are good, through and through, characters who are evil, completely, and characters who appear evil and mean but after further acquaintance, are good and kind.
I enjoy stories that:
- give me a bit of a twist, shock me a tad but still seem possible.
- show the depth of humanity and the depth of depravity in mankind.
- show the light at the end of the tunnel.
- show reality, both the bad AND the pleasantness of life.
- give me a bit of a preview and then make me wonder while I read how I’m going to get there.
- I hear straight from the individual involved, when I get their perspective and feelings and experience.
- let me experience someone’s memories with them.
- have a bit of humour and romance that doesn’t seem too predictable or forced.
- make me want to keep reading them, even though I haven’t gotten anything on my to-do list accomplished and I can barely keep my eyes open.
- make me want to try new things, think in new ways.
And now, I want an elephant named Rosie. And I want to join the circus.
Yesterday afternoon, I picked up Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen. I had begun reading it a week or two ago and had a difficult time getting into it, but decided yesterday that I would read it this weekend. In truth, I read it last night. I finished the remaining thirty pages this morning. Once I sat down and began reading with the intent to finish, I was absorbed. The characters became real. When some names popped up in the text, my hands clenched and I held my breath, afraid of what they would do. Other characters warmed my heart. Especially Rosie. I love the humour and humanity that Gruen created in the character of Rosie the elephant.
What kinds of stories do you like to read? What kinds of stories get your mind reeling?