Top Ten Tuesday

What Makes Me Pick Up A Book? My Top Ten Bookish Buzzwords {Top Ten Tuesday}

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Hi guys, and welcome to a new Top Ten Tuesday! Today’s all about what makes you decide to pick up a book.

I have a lot of bookish buzzwords. A buzzword is basically a specific word or phrase, mentioned in the blurb or in reviews, that makes you immediately interested and makes you want to pick up the book. So without further ado, let’s get into a few of my top bookish buzzwords!

Mythology / Retelling

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Cinder by Marissa Meyer
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This is a rather broad buzzword, but it gets me anytime. If a story has any mythological elements, I’m in. Mythological creatures like dragons, centaurs or kitsunes? I’m in. Is it a fairytale retelling? No matter how many I’ve already read, I’m still in.


The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
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Truthwitch by Susan Dennard
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Nothing gets me as emotional as books with amazing friendships. If a summary or review mentions friendship as a big aspect of the book, I’m pretty much already running to the bookstore.

Magical Worlds

The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima
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Graceling by Kristin Cashore
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Even though I love contemporary as well, I’m just a big sucker for fantasy. Give me an amazing magical world to get lost into, with an intriguing magical system to learn, politics to discover and so many magical characters to fall in love with, and I can just read the day away.

Morally Grey Characters / Antiheroes

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
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A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab
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Let’s be honest, the super good, kind, heroic and brave characters are boring. But introduce me to a morally grey character or antihero and I’m in love. Give me compelling back stories, motives and character development and I’m getting out the fictional wedding rings.


I'll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson
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Aristotle and Dante Discover The Secrets of the Universe
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I love when characters feel so real that they basically jump right of the page. When they feel so real they almost feel like your real-life friends or family. So when a story manages to focus on characters and makes me feel all the things for them? I’m in.


Wanderlost by Jen Malone
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Paper Towns by John Green
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There’s something about roadtrips that intrigues me. I love reading about them. I’ve always found driving around to be therapeutic so I guess it’s for this reason that I can’t say no to stories where characters find themselves on a roadtrip.


Nevernight by Jay Kristoff
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Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas
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This overlaps a bit with the morally grey characters or antiheroes, but it can also stand completely separate. Either way, if a blurb has the word assassin in it, I will pretty much have already put it in my shopping cart before you could have finished reading the rest of the blurb.


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The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh
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This is my favorite romance trope. I can’t help it. I’m a huge sucker for this and no matter how many times I’ve already read it, I will continue to keep reading them.

Abilities / Powers

The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken
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Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard
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Maybe it’s because I was obsessed with X-Men when I was a kid (and to be fair, I’m still obsessed now that I’m an adult). But give me a story where the characters develop super powers or special abilities? OH YES!

Ragtag group of characters becoming friends/family

Cinder by Marissa Meyer
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The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson
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This may be oddly specific, but I LOVE it when a ragtag group of characters comes together because of circumstances, decide to work together, defeat the odds, and in the process become close friends and form their own little family.


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More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera
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I feel like diversity should be a standard in all books and stories in general, not just a buzzword. But even still, if a book has been praised as beautifully diverse with amazing rep, it’ll go immediately up to the top of my priority list. So I’m counting it.

Do we share some favorite buzzwords? What are some of your bookish buzzwords? Please let me know if you have any recs for me based on these buzzwords!


  1. I can agree with so many of these! I love the examples that you’ve given too. I may need to pick some up!
    Chrissi Reads recently posted…Top Ten Things That Will Instantly Make Me Read A BookMy Profile

    1. Thanks! I hope you’ll enjoy whichever you decide to pick up next πŸ˜‰

  2. Mythology and especially magical worlds always seem to get my attention. Morally gray characters and character- driven stories are also biggies. And X-Men/ powers stories *nods* always good.

    I would like to read more roadtrip books…
    Greg recently posted…Top Ten Things That Make Me Want To Read A BookMy Profile

    1. Yes, if a story has any or more of these, I just can’t say no πŸ™‚ Roadtrips are amazing, but I haven’t found that many books with it yet…

  3. You could’ve easily described my reading tastes with this list πŸ˜€

    I love sooo many of these too! Mythology, magical worlds, friendships, band of misfits, … I love it ALL!
    Jolien @ The Fictional Reader recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday: What Will Make Me Want to Pick Up a Book Instantly?My Profile

    1. Haha, well, they are some amazing buzzwords πŸ˜‰ Glad we have similar reading tastes!

  4. I agree with all of them! Also fictional wedding rings?? HOW did you think of this??? Hate-to-love is a trope which I absolutely adore, because IT. HAS. SO. MUCH. ANGST. I want to read more of books in which there are magical schools, because I need something when I get annoyed at school??? (which is basically everyday tbh) I’d rather sleep and read the whole day❀️? #priorities
    Prabhleen recently posted…BOOKS I WANT TO READ ASAP!My Profile

    1. Haha, I am a collector of fictional wedding rings πŸ˜‰
      Hate-to-love is one my fave tropes as well, no matter how many I’ve read, I just can’t get enough. Oh and magical schools are definitely a must as well! They are definitely a lot more fun than real school…

  5. I’ve seen “friendship” on so many blogs this morning that it has led me to think about this idea. I’ve honestly never really thought much about it, but I do enjoy reading about powerful friendships.

    1. It’s definitely one of the things I ADORE reading about, so I’m glad to hear that so many others apparantly feel the same way πŸ™‚

  6. Excellent list! Retellings made mine as well. I also really love the one about a ragtag group becoming like family. I couldn’t think of how to even word that to put it on my list but it’s one of my favorite things to read about for sure.
    Suzanne @ The Bookish Libra recently posted…Top Ten Things That Will Make Me Instantly Want to Read a BookMy Profile

    1. Thanks! Yes, retellings are a must for me too πŸ™‚ Haha, yes, I was wondering how to name the ‘ragtag group becoming like family’ thing as well… I eventually went with this, but I’m sure there must be an easier name for it. Oh well, as long as it’s clear what I was talking about πŸ˜‰

  7. Road trips and enemies to lovers made my list too!! I do love diverse reads as well as friendship and character focused books too. Great list!!
    Grace @ Rebel Mommy Book Blog recently posted…Top Ten Things That Will Make Me Instantly Want To Read A BookMy Profile

    1. Thanks! I can definitely never say no to roadtrips or enemies to lovers either πŸ™‚

  8. I’m super glad I do my Top Ten before peeking at anyone else’s lists, otherwise my Top Ten would morph into Top One Hundred. I also love the Antiheroes, Mythology Retellings and books featuring strong friendships!

    My Top Ten Tuesday

    1. Haha, yes, I know the feeling πŸ˜‰ There are just so many great themes or buzzwords out there!

  9. I love your list so much, Lindsey! So many of these are book bait for me too. I love antiheroes! I’m so anxious to read ADSOM!
    Lori recently posted…Top Ten Things That Will Make Me Instantly Want To Read A BookMy Profile

    1. Thanks, Lori! Oh if you love anti-heroes, then there’s a pretty big chance you’ll love ADSOM! I do hope you’ll enjoy it πŸ™‚

  10. Ahhh, I forgot to put diversity on my list!! Aww poo! lol. That is a big one for me. I have so many of the same ones on my list. I completely forgot about my love for the anti-heroes too! Great list
    Julie @ Happily Ever Chapter recently posted…Excerpt & Giveaway: Walk of Shame by Lauren LayneMy Profile

    1. Thanks! I was wondering whether to include diversity in this list, because I feel like it’s something that should be intrinsic to every story, not just something to draw attention. But it does also draw my attention, so I ended up adding it anyway πŸ™‚ Anti-heroes are great too!

  11. I like books where the characters create their own families, and I’ve also been really into fairy tale retellings lately!
    Angela recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday: Things That Make Me Want to Read a BookMy Profile

    1. Yes, they’re definitely some of my faves as well πŸ™‚

  12. Great list!
    Jo recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday #103My Profile

    1. Thanks! πŸ™‚

  13. Friendships and Powers are really big selling points for me as well. I just don’t see enough positive friendships. And Powers are just plain cool.

    1. Yes, positive friendships should definitely be more present in stories! And powers are indeed just cool πŸ˜‰

  14. Oooh. I love this list. (And I see a ton of my favorite books on here – Aristotle and Dante, Song of Achilles, Half Bad, Simon!) Seriously, I think this list could have been my list! Especially antiheroes and character-driven. Half Bad is one of my favorites, so I really need to stop putting off Six of Crows and ADSOM!
    Cori @ bibliopathictendencies recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday #1: Top Ten Things That Will Make Me Instantly Want To Read A BookMy Profile

    1. Ah, looks like we have a lot of favorites in common πŸ™‚ If you love anti-heroes, I definitely think you’d like Six of Crows and ADSOM… Hope you’ll enjoy!

  15. Yeah retellings and character-driven books! I’m bummed I didn’t think about the “ragtag group”, because I love those kinds of stories too!
    Gabby recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday: Things That Instantly Make Me Want To Read A BookMy Profile

    1. Retellings and character-driven stories are the best! The ragtag group is such a great one, but it’s not so easy to describe. As long as you get what I mean it’s all good though πŸ™‚

  16. Oh I love this, except road trips but all the rest I loved especially superpowers (yay for X-Men) and random characters coming together and becoming a family!
    Kei @ The Lovely Pages Reviews recently posted…THINGS THAT WILL MAKE ME WANT TO READ A BOOKMy Profile

    1. X-Men have made me superpower-obsessed for the rest of my life, haha πŸ™‚ And I can never get enough of the random characters coming together storyline <3

  17. I do think I’m with you on all of these. My only surprise is how much I like assassin books. I never would have thought that would be a go to for a book! LOL
    Melissa (Books and Things) recently posted…Netflix: They have movies!My Profile

    1. Haha, for me it’s funny too because for movies I don’t really like action and assassin-type stories. But in books, I can’t get enough πŸ™‚

  18. Yes to all of these! I love books with mythology / folklore, and books with strong friendships are always awesome too. πŸ™‚ Thanks for sharing and, as always, fabulous post! <3
    Zoe @ Stories on Stage recently posted…YA Character DoppelgΓ€ngersMy Profile

    1. Thanks so much! Mythology and friendships are definitely my favorites πŸ™‚

  19. I agree with Retellings and Mythology – definitely buzzwords for me!

    I need to read more books with amazing friendships and both The Raven Boys and Truthwitch are high on my TBR.

    Magical Worlds – again, I’m IN!

    Antiheroes – Yes please! (loving Kaz!!!!)

    Assassins are another one that seem to do it for me and I really need to try Nevernight soon! Graceling wasn’t a huge hit for me but I’m determined to try more of the series.

    Enemies to Lovers is one of my favourite EVER tropes and I loved The Wrath and The Dawn. Falling Kingdoms is super high on my TBR.

    The Darkest Minds I also need to read!

    I also really enjoy the ragtag group thing and didn’t realise I did until you mentioned it so specifically!

    Please give Island of Exiles a try when you have a chance for the Diversity thing! πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚
    Di @ Book Reviews by Di recently posted…The Blog Squad: A Blogger Collaboration Part IXMy Profile

    1. Yay, glad we have so many bookish buzzwords in common!
      Also, aaah so happy you love Kaz! He is amazing indeed πŸ˜‰
      Nevernight was so much fun! And the rest of the Graceling series features different characters and even different periods, so maybe if those were what you liked less about Graceling, you may enjoy the rest more…
      Enemies to loves is amazing and I can never say no to it πŸ™‚
      Oh, I didn’t know about Island of Exiles, checking it out and adding to TBR right now!

  20. I feel like diversity should be a standard in all books and stories in general, not just a buzzword <- Yes I don't know why more people don't get that.
    Annemieke recently posted…Book Review – Veiled IntentionsMy Profile

    1. Exactly! It shouldn’t be used as a buzzword, but until it’s something that’s actually a part of EVERY book, I understand how it could be used as a buzzword instead.

  21. This is SUCH an amazing list and I’m flailing over so many of these too!! Totally agree with your thoughts on #10 and I absolutely also love assassin, enemies-to-lovers and friendship stories.? Also all books could easily hold magic and make me their total fan. I LOVE MAGIC!!
    Cait @ Paper Fury recently posted…I Dare You #BookTag (Wherein I Am Fearless Daredevil Who Knows No Bounds)My Profile

    1. Ah yay! Definitely, I don’t think I’ll ever be able to say no to any story containing magic πŸ™‚ If it then has magic, assassins, enemies-to-lovers and friendship as well, I’m sure I’ll fall in mad love with the story πŸ™‚

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