Genre and expectations

A really interesting post on the issue of genre.

Christina Philippou

There was a wonderful discussion on an online forum I’m a member of recently, based on an article on Book Riot, asking if romance should always have a happy ending. This set up an interesting debate on genre and expectations, which got me thinking: what is it that readers are after when they gravitate towards a particular genre?

Those of you that follow this blog know that I’m not the biggest fan of genre pigeonholing. I enjoy reading a wide variety of books and prefer to read based on mood: uplifting, thought-provoking, mystery-solving (be it crime or social (in the vein of Kate Morton’s ‘The Forgotten Garden’)) or emotional turmoil. Unfortunately, there is no retailer (including publisher websites) that class based on type – it’s always genre. If the story involves a crime being solved and some romance between the protagonists, it’s crime (not uplifting or pacy or anything else).


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