Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Let's Discuss - Super Repetitive Tropes

     The other day as I was taking a shower, I suddenly thought about the fact that a good chunk of the books I've read so far in 2015 have been sort of repetitive. Why I was thinking about this in the shower, I couldn't tell you. Probably because it's the one place I can't take my laptop/phone/kindle/book. BUT ANYWAY, about these  repeating tropes. I've read quite a few books this year featuring a main character who finds out she has magical powers that she has to learn how to use, often learning along the way that everything she thought she understood about her life was either a cover-up or an outright lie. I know, this is a time-honored story line (think Harry Potter, just to start), but I still think the current YA market is overrun with this particular trope.
   
  The books I'm thinking of, in no particular order, are:


     This is not to say that every single book is exactly the same. In The Queen of the Tearling, Kelsea does have to learn the practicalities of ruling her kingdom, but it's her necklace that holds the magic; in Shatter Me, Juliette knows all along about her power, but she has no idea how powerful she actually is, nor does she know that she can turn it off; in Grave Mercy, Ismae doesn't necessarily have magic, but she is the daughter of Mortain, so she does have a few trick gifts up her sleeve.

     I truly enjoyed each of these books, but I can't help but feel we've reached a saturation point here. I'm not sure how many more new books can follow this trend and still keep the quality and interest levels as high.

     Have you recently read any of these books, or others with the same trope? Do you agree that it might be time to shelve it for a while, or would you love to see more along this line?

8 comments:

  1. I don't mind reading them every now and then as long as they are mixed in with a million other more original feeling novels :)

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  2. I've been thinking about this a lot lately too! Except I've been thinking about how all the contemporary books I read are really similar. I've come to the conclusion that if it ain't broke, don't fix it. LOL! I personally never get over fluffy contemporaries or cliche fantasies etc. so I don't mind reading them as long as they have some kind of uniqueness to them. Lovely discussion Sarah! :D

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    1. I haven't read too many contemporaries lately, but I can see how they might have the same problem. I think I might just need to be more intentional when choosing my next books so that I'm exposing myself to a wider variety.

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  3. You might have a point Sarah, but I think the trope is used in a 'this could be you dear reader' way, you know, making out that we all have the opportunity to secretly be like these characters, or it's an easy way to grow and develop with the character.. I'm not too sure. Its a strong point though, maybe we should have less suddenly magic or skillful and more, introduced magic and skillful, or already figured, who knows! :)

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    1. That is true... this is a trope that definitely gets those daydream muscles moving!

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  4. I don't mind tropes when they're executed well - I do think that sometimes certain themes or ideas are popular for a reason. But it is a fresh of breath air when you read something truly unique, right?

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

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    1. Exactly! And I wouldn't say any of the books I mentioned are sub-par, but perhaps I overdid it by reading them all in such a short time span...

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