5 Jan 2013
Discussion: Emotional books
Recently I saw someone comment that she didn't want to buy a book because she knew it would make her cry and honestly the first thing I thought was how silly that was! Sorry to the person in question, there's no offence meant.
It really got me thinking though, one thing I've always said is the mark of a good book is if it can make me cry. To be able to draw me in and inspire those kind of emotions just with words, to be able to capture the emotions of a scene so well that I can feel them too when I'm reading is not an easy thing to do. So when a book gets me so caught up in it, and connected so much I cry, be it a few tears or bawling my eyes out, that has to be a good thing, right?
I could probably count the amount of books that have caused me to produce tears on one hand but they will always stick with me, I will always remember the way they made me feel, I may have been an emotional wreck after a couple but it was worth it and to be honest, sometimes you need to get a bit of crying out.
Here are a few examples of books that made me weep;
Entangled by Cat Clarke - I was a giant sobbing mess by the end of this book! Seriously, a puffy, red eyed, snotty nose mess. Grace's problems and the way she was, reminded me so much of a way I used to be, I instantly connected with her, it was like I knew exactly what she was going through and I went through it all with her, I cried for her, I cried for myself, I cried just because I couldn't stop. But this was one that shook up my emotions because I related to the character, so it might not make everyone cry, in fact I know a number of people who just didn't 'get it.'
Putting Alice back together by Carol Marinelli - This isn't even my typical read but I was asked to review it, so I gave it a shot and boy was I surprised! There are a number of reasons this one bought me to tears, first Alice's past, as the book goes on, we dig deeper and find out what happened to her to cause the breakdown she's having in the present and it was absolutely heartbreaking. What happened was so sad, it made me cry all on its own but having had an experience in the same area myself it brought up emotions and memories of my own that made me bawl harder. Then there was the current day Alice going through anxiety attacks and generally feeling lost and confused was something I was going through myself at the time, so again I related and cried, and cried and cried some more.
New moon by Stephanie Meyer - Now this one is different to the first two because I wasn't connected with the characters in the same way, I cried simply because it was sad and was written so well it captured everything she was feeling so poignantly that I couldn't not get swept away in it. I read New moon a long time before I joined the online book community and before the movie was out so I had NO idea what was going to happen, so when it came to the bit where Edward leaves I really didn't see it coming and it floored me, and the scene was written so well it bought tears to my eyes, lots of them. A lot of people say bad things about this series but you cannot deny Ms Meyers writing is brilliant.
Some other books that made me emotional, just through sheer good writing and not because I connected myself to the situation were Last breath by Rachel Caine, Blue sky days by Marie Landry, A need so beautiful by Suzanne Young, Hourglass by Claudia Gray, The green mile by Stephen King and many more but I don't want to bore you with a huge list.
So even though some of these books had me reaching for the tissues and others had me mopping up torrents of salty tears, I'd never want to undo reading any and I certainly wouldn't avoid a book because I thought it might make me cry. That's what reading is all about after all, living in the worlds of the characters, imagining not just what they're doing but what they're feeling so that we understand them, relate to them and ultimately we come away with something after we've read the last chapter. Books that make a lasting impression are what makes reading so great.
What do you think? Do you avoid emotional books? Do you agree or disagree with what I'm saying? And what are the books that have made you cry?