Top 10 Things on My Reading Wish List

01.21.2014

By Zara D. Garcia-Alvarez / @ZaraAlexis

There are books that are written and then there are books that you wish authors would write. This list as created by the Broke and Bookish blog team, features the Top 10 Things I’d love to have on my reading list in regards to a certain type of character, plot, theme etc. Here are my top 10 for this Tuesday:

1. More stories with setting in the Philippines. More stories that showcase the rich, Filipino culture.

There are many well-written books on Asian culture, usually set in China, Japan, Korea, Vietnam, India. While this is true, very little is written about the Philippines. Aside from Illustrado by Miguel Syjuco, winner of The Man Asian Literary Prize, the Filipino culture is unfortunately missing from North American bookshelves.

2. Main characters with eccentric flaws or challenges.

I would love to read a book that uncovers the secrets of those characters with eccentric flaws or challenges. Rather than read about characters with well-known and already well-used problems or conflicts in stories, I yearn to read something different. Perhaps the main character is autistic? How would that affect the first-person narrative? Perhaps the main character is a five-year-old prodigy? What would that mean about fitting in socially as well as nurturing one’s own gift?

3. Controversial topics.

I won’t be entertained by books or movies that center its focus on controversy alone, but if a book is written in such a way that a controversial subject is introduced to the reader and the story causes the reader to contemplate the complexities of such a topic, then yes, I’d love to read that kind of book.

4. Highly creative and imaginative plots like the novel, The Night Circus, by Erin Morgenstern.

It’s been a long time since I’ve read anything as imaginative or creative as The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. I would love to read a book that is as rich in its language as it is in its graphic, visual appeal. The ideas in The Night Circus were so wonderfully entertaining and other-worldly that I really never wanted to book to end. That’s creative and gifted storytelling.

5. Angels as warriors, but not necessarily in the YA genre.

I’ve always been interested in the ethereal and anything creative enough to be deemed fantasy. Aside from the religious associations that are connected with angels, I often wonder why anything paranormal in fiction is usually written in the YA genre. I’d love to read about angels as warriors without the restriction of its target audience as those who are under the age of 25.

6. Fictional works to include photographs, art like Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children and Hollow City by Ransom Riggs.

There fictional novels and then there are graphic novels. I’d love to see a collaboration between the two like the two books by Ransom Riggs: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children and Hollow City.

7. More collections of short stories.

The very first collection of short stories I read was Nine Stories by J.D. Salinger. Since then, I’ve always been enamoured with the stealth of the short story. What a writer can compose in a far number of fewer pages than a large 400-page saga, is quite impressive. It’s a craft only a few gifted writers can sustain. With the recent success of Lynn Coady’s Hellgoing as winner of the Giller Prize in 2013 and Alice Munro’s recognition as Nobel Prize Winner in literature, the queen of the short story, it would be wise for other writers to take notice and consider penning the revival of the short story. I would certainly add these collections to my library.

8. Well-written and touching memoirs and/or autobiographies.

Many underrated stories are those that are true. I’ve read a number of memoirs that have enlightened my thinking, yet they haven’t had the opportunity to be recognized on a top 20 list in bestsellers anywhere. I’d also love to read about people who have made a significant difference in society, rather than read an autobiography about someone who simply happens to be famous because Hollywood deems him/her so.

9. Lyrical poetry.

The last time I read poetry that I fell in love instantly was when I read Blizzard of One by Mark Strand. I would love to discover some new poets in the literary marketplace.

10. Feminist writing like Herland by Charlotte Perkins Gilman.

I would love to come across more fiction written from a feminist perspective.

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What are the things you have on your reading wish list?

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