Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Fall Into Reading Challenge Question #6

You may recall that I have joined the Fall Into Reading Challenge hosted over at Callapidder Days.  She is posing a question each week, and this week's question is:

When it comes to fiction, are you more of a “plot person” or a “character person”? If you had to choose, which concept would win out when it comes to picking and loving a book: plot or character?

Oh, man.  This is like asking me to choose between my kids!   Of course, I prefer novels that have BOTH plot and character, and a lack of either one can make me dislike a book.  I enjoy certain types of thrillers, where the focus is on a fast-paced plot, and I also enjoy slower, character-driven novels where the characters are well-drawn and interesting.  The absence of either can ruin a book for me.

I may be risking banishment with this, but I am not a fan of America's #1 best-selling author, James Patterson.  I'll admit I have only read one of his books, but the characters seemed so flat and one-dimensional that I have never picked up another one, despite the fast-moving, suspenseful plots.  On the other hand, I have read so-called literary novels that bored me to tears because nothing seemed to really happen...though I think this is especially true for me if the plot-less novel is also depressing.  I don't need a happy ending, but I do need at least a glimmer of hope.

I just finished reading a Stephanie Plum novel, which is pure fluffy plot-driven fun, but Janet Evanovich has created great characters - I feel like I know Stephanie personally.

Sorry, I just can't choose!  Can't I have my cake and eat it, too?

How about you - which is more important to you - good plot or in-depth characters?


  1. Anonymous5:33 PM

    I'm definitely more of a plot person. Even well-rounded characters don't hold my interest if they are set in a underdeveloped plot.

  2. Lol - love your answer. I don't think I could separate both - but I can forgive a lot more with a good plot.

  3. I had a hard time choosing too, but eventually chose plot. I'm sure I wouldn't love a book that had a good plot and no well developed characters. But I think I'd be bored out of my mind with interesting characters in a book where nothing happens. It is a hard question though. Generally if a book has no plot or poorly written characters, I don't finish it!

  4. Stephanie Plum cracks me up too, Sue! I stumbled upon her a few years ago and hadn't laughed so hard for ages. I spread the word amongst a few friends too..but only the ones who I knew would appreciate it. I compared it to a sitting in bed with a nice box of chocolates! Grandma Mazur's outfits for the band and the time they all set fire to Stephanie's parents' backyard stand out as some favourite moments. I actually let Harriet read them (except the first one) and she loved them too. Have found it hard to get through the latest one though..perhaps it's time for Stephanie to move on... Anyhow plot vs character... i think one must have a certain about of both otherwise why waste one's time?? I find i'm getting more and more particular about what I read these days....

  5. As thrillers, mystery etc are my favourite genres I definitely prefer plot but the bonus is when the characters are amazing also so I agree can we have both please.

  6. Yeah, Annie, Stephanie Plum is good for some belly laughs when you're having a bad week! My favorites are Grandma and Lula.