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Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Wednesday Chatter #13: Does it matter if you don't connect with characters?

Wednesday Chatter is a weekly feature at Ruby's Books where we'll be talking about anything and everything related to books and reading. Click here if you want to see what we talked about in the previous weeks


WARNING: Some bad words might be used in the following post. Don't say I didn't warn you!



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Hey guys! Happy Wednesday! Today I want to talk to you about characters. I said this in a comment for a blog post a few weeks ago (if I find the post, I'll share!), but for me a lot of times the characters are more important than the plot itself. It's good to read about a good story, but most of the time how I relate to characters, how I feel about them, influence my reading experience.

When I was in school, I used to not enjoy most of the books that we had to read for Literature class. And that's due in part to the fact that they were classic novels, which bore me, but also to the fact that I really didn't care about the characters. The books that I did enjoy were the books that made me give a damn if a character lives or dies.

So this got me thinking. Of all the books I end up DNFing, how many of those are influenced by my lack of connection with the characters? The answer is about 70%, which is a lot. But seriously, most of the books I love are books that made me feel something for those characters.

I usually struggle the most with books written from one character's POV. If I hate that character, or if I don't understand their reasoning, chances are I won't like the book. My problem however doesn't stem from not relating to the character. This probably is due to either my brain being wired differently, or to the fact that my day-to-day job is as a psychologist, but I don't believe I need to relate to a character or to know what they're going through in order to understand their story or to like it. My problem usually involves those characters that I can't stand. Or those characters I can't understand, the ones that make me roll my eyes so hard, I get dizzy and get a headache over they're actions.

What about you? Do you care if you don't have any feelings, positive or negative, towards a character? Is it a deal breaker for you and does it make you DNF a book faster than a book with a not-so-good plot?

2 comments:

  1. Connection to the characters is a huge thing for me! When I don't connect to them, I tend to notice flaws in other parts of the book more often. And I sometimes lose a connection to the book as a whole. If I don't care much for the characters, how much can I really care about their stories? I'm not super picky about plot, which may make it easier for me to DNF a book when I don't connect to the characters.

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    Replies
    1. Same here! *phew* So I'm not alone. It is difficult to care about the plot when the character themselves aren't making me feel anything for them. At least strong hate if nothing else :)) Thanks for stopping by!

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