Thursday, April 10, 2014

Thursday Thoughts || Sad Reads

It's already time for week three of Thursday Thoughts here on Ok, Let's Read! Is that crazy or what?! This is an interactive, original, weekly feature here on my blog. Everyone who has an opinion is invited to make their own post, link up and join the conversation! This week's theme is Sad Reads. I've heard a handful of book vloggers on YouTube address this before and thought that it was a very interesting topic. It was something that hadn't even crossed my mind before they brought it up, so I'm excited to delve into my mind and express my opinions on this!

It's come to my attention that some people avoid sad reads intentionally. If you're raving about a book like The Fault In Our Stars and you say "Oh my god, it was so good. I cried so much," some people actually take that as a bad thing and run the other way. Knowing a book is sad and may make them cry or feel extreme emotions is sometimes a factor that can deter a reader from picking up a certain book. Now, when I realized that this was something that happened my initial thought was "Well, I'm certainly not one of those people." But upon further investigation, I started to realize that I might accidentally be someone who shies away from sad books. And, I had no idea!

I'm the kind of person who cries SUPER easily in general, but especially while reading. This is one of the reasons I initially thought I wasn't someone who shied away from sad books. If I cry while reading a book, that basically tells me that it's a 3.5 stars or higher. Why? Because I cared enough to cry. The author pulled me into the story and I yearned enough with the characters that when something tear-provoking happened.. my tears were provoked. Most recently, I cried while reading The Archived and Cress. Wait.. Did I cry during Cress? I had to... I know I did at some point. Whatever. That's irrelevant. Read Cress. It's amazing. I'm getting off topic... All that being said, I had a realization recently that I don't actually read very many "sad books"! You might be confused so let me break this down further for you.

When I say "sad books" -- for the purposes of this discussion -- I'm referring to books that are widely known to be sad. Books like The Fault In Our Stars and Perks of Being a Wallflower are what I'm considering "sad books." I think the obvious cliche for "sad books" is deeply emotional contemporaries. When I first wrote out this topic that was what I had in mind, so that's what I'm talking about. However, that's not to say that other genres have sad books in them. They definitely do. But, I generally notice that books regarded as sad are contemporaries that deal with things like disease, death, or tragedy.

Tragedy. Just that word rings a weird bell for me. I'm forgetting to acknowledge classic sad stories. Hamlet, for example, is a play I read my senior year of high school because we had to. And, I LOVED it. That's a terribly sad story. Would I have read it otherwise? Well.. maybe. Because, I'm a theater geek. Ahh. This was a bad example and I'm getting off on a tangent. The moral of this whole rambling story is that I am someone who is afraid of outwardly sad books and it's something I'm trying to correct because I don't even know why I'm like that. Books don't have to be sad to be good, but knowing that a book made you feel strong emotions should really tell you something.

And, there you have it! Sorry that this week's post was all over the place and probably didn't make much sense. I hope you understood the gist of what I was trying to get across. If you have any recommendations of any really great "sad books" PLEASE do not hesitate to leave them in the comments because as I said before I would love to read more stereotypically sad novels since they're so widely popular especially in YA. I hope you enjoyed this week's Thursday Thoughts! Don't forget to come back next week where our theme will be "Choosing Books." See you then!

Hi! Just a little afterthought here. I'm considering starting a monthly or bi-monthly #ThursdayThoughts Twitter chat. It would be the kind of thing where I ask questions pertaining to the most recent topics and we can all discuss on Twitter since it's a much more immediate environment. Would you be interested? Would you participate in that? If you have any opinions on this, please comment or tweet me. I would love some of your input.


  1. Oh man - you made a great point that I had thought about but somehow forgot to put into my post. I totally agree that if I cry during a read, I know it's going to be a highly rated book for me because it means I CARE. If I didn't care, I wouldn't be crying, I'd be bored.

    I don't think I actively avoid sad reads; I just think that I need to be in the exact right mood for them or else they won't be enjoyable if that makes sense?

    1. I definitely agree with the mood thing. Something else I realized after writing this is that I really like most sad movies. My favorite movie is Titanic, for crying out loud. So, it's odd that I would kind of avoid the more sad books. But, I think it has to do with the what a book gets you emotionally vs. a movie. I think I become more attached to the book/characters since I'm with them longer. If that makes sense.

  2. I love this weeks topic, I am a total crier. I actually love books that make me cry and yet hate them at the same time. I love that the author has managed to get me to care so much, but I hate that the book is soooo sad because I love a happy ending. I will definitely read a book if I think it will bring out such strong emotions in me, it's part of the reason I read TFIOS - but I actually didn't cry at that one.

  3. You made an excellent point about how crying makes us realize that we actually cared about the book we read. I didn't think of that point! I cry very easily, and I probably cry while reading books that others probably do not cry during.


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