We all have those pesky things that when we come across them in a book, they can ruin the whole experience. Sometimes I can look past them, some authors make me even question myself when they don’t bother me. But I have put together a quick list of the things that turn me off from enjoying a book. I’d love to know what yours are!
This is a big one for all of us here at UTC. Surprisingly, I have read some books that deal with cheating and I’ve managed to enjoy them. I’m not quite sure how that has happened. But in general, cheating involves a lot of angst and drama. Bad decisions. Lots of hair pulling and wanting to choke generally the heroine on my part. It drives me crazy and very few people know how to make it work. Basically if you want to throw cheating into the story just to spice it up, I think you should go back to the drawing board and come up with a stronger plotline. I have DNF books before due to cheating. I have stayed away from reading books due to cheating.
Redeemed “Bad” Guys
Have you noticed how more and more authors think they are testing boundaries and writing love stories for these killers and bad guys that are shooting or stabbing someone one minute, and by the end of the book they want to have a family and can’t wait to see their woman pregnant? Here’s the thing that gets me stabby. I do enjoy a story about a bad guy once in a while. I just want him to stay true to character. Don’t give me a guy that starts off as this supposedly hard as nails dude that everyone in town fears but turns into a good guy by the time the heroine is through with him. There is a line that when a hero crosses it, he should not be redeemed. And you know what, there are plenty of great stories about bad guys. Just keep them that way. I can’t buy the transformation you are trying to sell me.
A big one that gets me rolling my eyes every time is “Little Girl”. No, I don’t think it’s cool that a big hulking hot alpha man wants to call his woman “Little Girl”. What kind of depraved issues is he harboring that that even needs to be a thing. I don’t find it sweet, and I definitely don’t find it sexy. Ughhh It’s ruined many a hero impression for me over the years and I keep seeing it pop up from time to time.
And while we are on the subject of things heroes say, Angela has one that drives her crazy as well. The phrase “I aim to please” *insert eye roll here*
Disrespect for Women
This is something that has been creeping up in plots lately, especially when the hero is one of those bad guys I mentioned above. This is usually justified by the fact that maybe the hero never treats the heroine that way. But what kind of douche treats women a certain way and you would want to be with him? A big culprit of this one is the MC trope, and no, I can’t get over it just because he is only good for the heroine. Once a douche, always a douche.
This isn’t the easiest topic to put in a book. What gets me is that a lot of people just use it as something that makes their books “cool” or relevant to the times. Sometimes it’s the occasional pot smoking that’s made to seem it’s just hip that the characters are doing it. Or maybe they’re pot farmers, so it’s all about their business enterprise. I hate seeing it talked about lightly. I also struggle when books delve into the deeper effects of it, but I’ve read lots of really gripping storylines that feature drug addiction as a struggle and something the characters work on overcoming (or succumb to). I just really dislike it being thrown in as a plot devise and not given the seriousness it deserves.
This goes right along with the one before. Sometimes, it’s inevitable that the character has found herself in a position that this happens to her. Or it’s happened in her past and it’s something she struggles with. More often than not though, it’s just added to cause tension or drama and it’s not addressed with the seriousness it should. When it’s easily brushed aside, it just drives me mad because you didn’t need to add it in the first place then!
No, I don’t find bathroom humor to be funny. Is that the only things that make you laugh? Because, the first time might’ve been funny but having a whole book where all these gross things continue to happen just makes me want to scream “NEXT!”.
This is usually something that can bother me with historical romance, but there have been some contemporary books that make me cringe at times. I would much rather the author gloss over some details about the person’s body odor or their need for a shower. Or how about a bathroom scene where the hero goes to the bathroom and doesn’t wash his hands and wants to get frisky with the heroine. Totally pulls me out of a scene.
Certain words to describe body parts
We’ve all been there. You are in the middle of a hot scene and the author chooses to use a word that pulls you out of it. This is different for every person. For me, it’s the flowery descriptions. Her “center” and “petals” or his “velvet covered rod“. *face palm* I’m also not a fan of the word “cunt“. For others might be the use of the word “pussy“. We all have our word or phrase that makes us cringe, and sadly authors can’t keep us all happy because of that. So I think I would settle for doing away with flowers and getting more real. 😉 I’m not easily offended, but I am known to roll my eyes more often than not.
Hero/heroine having sex with someone else while trying to get the girl/guy
Wow that was a mouthful. But I hate when I’m halfway through a book and the hero has been trying to date the heroine (or maybe dated her and temporarily broke up) and he has to go and stick it somewhere because you know he has needs and can’t contain himself. Not cool. There might be a book I’ve enjoyed where this scenario happened and I’m not sure how the author made that work but in general, this is a no no for me.
I think that about sums it up for me today. What are some of your pet peeves that can be the difference between enjoying a book or getting stabby with it?