Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Question Wednesday: What makes a good book "good?"

The title is pretty much self-explanatory in my opinion.

I'm sure everyone has their favorite books, or books that they think are "good" (or fabulous or awe-inspiring or life-changing, dot dot dot). The question is, what exactly makes a good book "good?"

First of all, I think the writing matters a lot. Every author has a different style, and not essentially every bestselling author's style suits your liking. However, generally speaking, a natural, established flow of story is fundamental. There should also at least be some conflict, and enough character interactions to push the plot along. For me personally, I have an obsession with first-person narratives (well I do still lovelovelove the Harry Potter series), particularly if it's a girl's perspective. Well, for the most part because I'm a girl.

Aside from the actual writing, I do think there's much more to a "good" story. Maybe one particular character (preferably the protagonist, or maybe the villain! You never know) connects to you in a certain way--most likely because it reflects some of your own qualities--you just bond with the book/character instantly. I think that's the case with a lot of books that I like. Say, the Perks of Being a Wallflower. I just felt so sympathetic towards Charlie and Sam, because I think their high school days, although crazy like mine, are splattered with the dark dangers of being a teenager, the almost inevitable melancholy that often accompanies adolescence. Another example, the Fault in Our Stars, I was constantly amazed by the wit the two main characters bring to the table. I was so invested in them and their relationship that I cried buckets for the turnout of the story (sobbbbbbb!).

So, I think a good story not only has to be solid in writing, but also has to be able to evoke some personal, emotional response from the reader. 

What do you think?

Vanessa :]


  1. so much agreement! I think it's also a book that personally speaks to you. That's the feeling I get while I'm reading Life of Pi. It's touching and it makes you think about your life and world around you. Now that's a good book! And first-person is sooooo good at doing this because you feel everything the narrator does if the writer does a good job :D

    1. that's why I applaud JK Rowling for using third person. ah. and being so darn good at it