Top Ten Tuesday

TTT – Rewind

Top Ten Tuesday used to be a weekly post hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, but was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl. “It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.” This is definitely something I can understand and want to participate in.

I haven’t been blogging for nearly as long as TTT has been going, so this rewind gives me the time to revisit previous topics that I never got the chance to do. This week I’m going to talk about gateway books. Have you ever read the kind of book that gets its hooks in you and makes you want to read a ton more books in that genre? Here’s my gateway books for various genres:

  1. The Witching Hour by Anne Rice — while I classify this one firmly in the fantasy genre, it also has a major historical fiction component, and it made me want to read more historical fiction books. Especially focusing on witches.
  2. The Anastasia Syndrome and Other Stories by Mary Higgins Clark — I got my hands on this book early on and fell in love with mystery/thrillers and haven’t stopped reading them since.
  3. Hook/Lost in Darkness by Gina L. Maxwell — I definitely had a grudge against romance, thinking it was going to all be the cheesy 80s and 90s style romance that I used to sneak-read as a kid. This was suggested to me, and boy did it open a whole new world of modern-day spicy romance novels to me.
  4. Get a Life, Chloe Brown by Talia Hibbert — this book showed me all about the genre of rom-coms that were inclusive, where I could identify with a plus-size and disabled character, laugh while reading, and not have to deal with corny words for genitalia.
  5. Circe by Madeline Miller — I didn’t even know that mythology retellings were an entire subgenre until I discovered this book, and then fell into a whole rabbit hole of retellings.
  6. Kill the Queen by Jennifer Estep — this was my first introduction to fantasy as an adult, and I haven’t looked back since. Now it’s my most frequently read genre most months.
  7. The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang — as a subgenre, military fantasy has quickly become a favorite, and to think that I didn’t even know that it existed before this book dropped.
  8. Dread Nation by Justina Ireland — this was one of the first horror books that I read recently, and I like to call it horror-lite. As a self-proclaimed wuss, this is a genre I’m only starting to read, but the ones I can manage, I do enjoy.
  9. Game of Cones by Cynthia Baxter — this was the first cozy mystery I ever read, and I was actually surprised at how much I love the genre, since I also love the super dark and gritty and gory kind of mysteries too.
  10. The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt — I’m sure I read literary fiction before this, but this one stands out the most to me, especially since I loved this book so much. This is a genre that can be hit or miss for me, but when it hits, it hits hard.

What are some of your gateway books?

25 replies »

  1. Gateway books. That’s a good way to describe them! The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan was my gateway book into truly epic fantasy. I’d read Mercedes Lackey’s The Last Herald-Mage trilogy previously, and Anne McCaffrey’s Dragonriders of Pern, but The Wheel of Time was the first series I read that was fantasy on a major scale.

    Happy TTT!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Right? I love thinking of them like that! And I’ve got that one on my TBR. It’s so cool when we find a book that opens up a whole new world of books to us, isn’t it?


    • Thank you! I loved the idea so much when I did this post, and it doesn’t necessarily have to be the first one you read, just the one that made you fall in love with the genre. I’ve got to read a Kleypas book at some point!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you! I definitely had to scroll through the years for this one, and I don’t know if we ever stop falling into the retelling hole once we start! The Poppy War is gritty and dark but so, so good!


    • I read the first few books in the Vampire Chronicles, but definitely veered right into the Mayfair Witches and completely fell in love. I think I love it even better than the Vampire Chronicles!


    • The Goldfinch was fantastic, but I really enjoyed Game of Cones! It’s such a cute and fun cozy mystery. Hopefully I’ve inspired you to try one (or more) of these books!


    • Oh that’s awesome to find a series that you click with so wonderfully! I might just have to check that out, because the “dark romance” book that was suggested to me didn’t have any romance at all, but I’m open to trying new books, so thanks for the heads up!


  2. Great topic, and not one that I’ve given much thought to. I can’t believe I’ve only read one of these books in your list, The Goldfinch. Unfortunately I had the complete opposite reaction you did haha. I really abhorred it. 😛 (But I’m glad you liked it!) I was mad that I wasted my time reading it and going through the library holds list 2-3x just to finish it lol! This was part of the process I guess I inadvertently took that made me realize these types of stories aren’t for me. I lump it in with Wuthering Heights & Normal People.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you! I guess that was the gateway closing for that kind of book for you, and it was a really, really long book, so I can completely understand your frustration. Literary fiction seems to be super hit or miss for most people.


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