When we think ‘book tropes’, we often think boring or over done clichés that no one wants to see. But they can also be easy categories that help you find more books you like. Below are six of my favourite tropes.

This post is based on today’s prompt by Kate @ Cover To Cover for the Bookending Spring event. This means that as soon as I post this I’m going to blog hop over to other people who wrote a post on their favourite reading tropes and (try to) recommend books to them. If that’s you, please leave a link to your post below!

The book titles link to their Goodreads pages.

A gruff older character learns to love again

Nothing is as heart-warming as seeing someone who has lost all pleasure in life learn that it’s really not so bad through their connections with other people. Especially when they’re a grumpy old man who spends the first half of the book complaining about everything. It never fails to crack me up!

Recommendation: A Man Called Ove by Frederik Backman

A character judges another character wrongly when they first meet them

I really love stories that play with how your perception of other people is influenced by your own ideas. At the start of the book the protagonist meets someone and doesn’t like them at all, but as the story progresses they realize that there may be more to this person than they initially thought, often because they themselves have gone through some character growth. It shows us how many different sides there are to people and how our first judgement isn’t always definitive. A good moral, don’t you think?

Recommendation: Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman

An average person takes the crown

By this I mean that a completely ordinary person has extraordinary things happen to them. There is no chosen one, no prophecy or hidden powers, just someone like you and me. Because this means that it could happen to us as well, right? Don’t get me started on how the last Star Wars film undid all the great work they did in The Last Jedi, aaarch.

Recommendation: The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell

An old person reveals the secrets of their life

These kind of stories play with the nature of storytelling and the reliability of narrators. Through the way someone tells about their life you slowly start picking up little clues that, as the book progresses, add up to one big solution a mystery. We, the readers, are often personified as the young protagonist who the story is being told to.

Recommendation: The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield

A book set in a book store

Books like these are basically only paying lip service to us, the readers, by saying how great books are. Of course we love books, we’re reading one right now! I am such a sucker for this, though. Books books books <3.

Recommendation: The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend by Katarina Bivald and everything on my list of 10 books about books and booklovers.

An unusual group of rebels

A small group of people is brought together under unusual circumstances and finds a creative way to rebel against the powers that be. What I mainly love about these stories is the interactions between the characters who may under ordinary circumstances not have spoken much but are now taking the opportunity to learn from each other.

Recommendation: The Help by Kathryn Stockett

That’s it for me! What do you think of these tropes? Do you have any book recommendations for me? Leave a comment below!

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This post was based on the prompt ‘Favourite Reading Tropes, Bookending Spring style!’ by Kate @ Cover to Cover Book Blog as part of the Bookending Spring 2020 Event. This event is hosted by Clo @ Cuppa Clo and Sam @ Fictionally Sam. It runs for all of April and is open to all book bloggers. Find out more by clicking here.


13 thoughts on “My Favourite Reading Tropes | Bookending Spring

  1. I really enjoy when people don’t get along at first and when things deal with writing or bookstores. I also have a soft spot for when gruff character learns to open up again. It is just so heart warming!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love strong female friendships in books and romantic couples which are an odd pair on first sight.
    I also like breaking the third wall (when it fits in with the genre and story). And I like to read memoirs about people leaving cults. I could read a million books with that storyline and it would never ever be boring for me…


    1. Yes! Strong female friendships in books are the best. (And surprisingly rare, unfortunately!) Do you have any recommendations for books with those? I absolutely love metafiction- I have a post about that coming soon-ish. And lastly, people leaving cults is interestingly niche! 🙂


      1. The book that comes to mind for me first is “one day in December”, in which a very deep female friendship goes through a very very VERY rough patch. It is described in a quite realistic way. I will think of more books but right now this is one which immediately comes to mind.

        Liked by 1 person

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