Has the Pandemic influenced the genres you read? #TuesdayBookBlog #bookbloggers #genres

The pandemic has affected us all in myriad ways. In addition to the illness itself it has changed how we all live our lives, work, interact with others, and conduct our day-to-day activities. But has it changed your reading habits?

Do you read more now?

Or, has the anxiety of the pandemic caused you to read less?

Do you like to read different types of books than you did before?

As many who follow this blog know, I have been a staunch crime/thriller/mystery lover for decades. And yes, I still like that type of novel. But… I find myself gravitating toward more up-lifting, and family oriented fiction as of late. I’m more drawn to women’s fiction and ‘uplit’ now. I’ve always liked to read the occasional family saga, but now those are the types of books that call to me from my TBR.

I’d love to know – is it just me? Or, have you changed your preferred genre in recent months?

About Fictionophile

Fiction reviewer ; Goodreads librarian. Retired library cataloger - more time to read! Loves books, gardening, and red wine. I have been a reviewer member of NetGalley since October 2013. I review titles offered by Edelweiss, and participate in blog tours with TLC Book Tours.
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64 Responses to Has the Pandemic influenced the genres you read? #TuesdayBookBlog #bookbloggers #genres

  1. Carla says:

    I honestly don’t think my reading choices has changed. I already read a variety of genres. What I have found is that I have a lot more time on my hands. Because of that, I have been visiting a variety of new blogs and have read a lot of new to me authors based on recommendations and reviews. Of course, I have read a lot more books as I am not going out and doing things like I did before. What has changed is my desire to review the books I read. If I didn’t blog, I probably wouldn’t be bothered to write reviews at all. Great post Lynne, it got me thinking.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You’ve hit the nail on the head Carla. I agree with you. If it weren’t for my blog, I probably wouldn’t bother writing reviews either. That is sad though. One of my best friends reads as much as I do and she never writes reviews. Her opinions would be valuable to other prospective readers. If more folks wrote reviews then the Goodreads scores would reflect more accuracy.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Brian Heys says:

    I used to read mainly thrillers and horror, but the pandemic and various states of lockdown have made me more open to other genres, especially contemporary and literary. I’ve read several Booker Prize winners this year, including The Discomfort of Evening, which won the International Booker a few months ago.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Sheree @ Keeping Up With The Penguins says:

    I’ve definitely found myself drawn more to books that will make me smile – sometimes that’s “up-lit”, sometimes it’s just humourous writing (David Sedaris is a good example). I’ve also found myself much more inclined to shorter books and essay collections; I’ve had such a hard time focusing on anything longer than 300 pages!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. There was a period of about two to three months this year that I went into a reading slump. No books interested me in the genres that I once loved such as fantasy, mystery and thrillers. I think it affected my mental health in a way, though I’m not sure. But then someone gifted me a book of cultural fiction, a genre I’d never read and I loved it! It’s what brought me out of my reading slump and even prompted the start of my blog! Now cultural and historical fiction are my new favorites and I hadn’t realised this change until I read this!
    It shows how sometimes we just need a change and don’t even realise when it happens.

    Liked by 1 person

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  6. bookasaurusbex says:

    Absolutely. But it seems to be the opposite of other people. For 5 years now since I lost part of my vision I’ve only read “easy” romance chick lit novels with a few police procedural books chucked in there. After being ill in the pandemic and having Covid at the start, I decided I was fed up holding myself back and joined an online book group. Through that, I found myself reading some more serious books and now I’m completely smitten again. I still cannot do thrillers or horrors though! ♡♡

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Jazz says:

    I’ve been reading a lot more over the pandemic. I’ve been working from home since March and the extra free time I have each day goes towards reading. In terms of genre, I’m just going for anything that gives me some escapism. I need it with all the current craziness 😂

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Kate Vane says:

    I’ve been reading more humour, as well as enjoying comedy on TV/podcasts/online. I’ve also been getting into classics. That may just be because I haven’t seen many new books that interest me, it feels like there’s a lot of formulaic stuff out there at the moment.


    • Thanks Kate. I believe that the current climate makes it challenging for publishers and authors to market new books. You are right in that many new titles are rather formulaic in content. Humour is good in times like these – it truly is the best medicine. ♥


  9. calypte says:

    I think it was as much a health issue as the pandemic, but yes, reaching for more comforting books and easy reads, including some rereads of childhood nostalgia.


  10. Morning. The pandemic hasn’t changed my reading patterns. I’m glad about that, because it sure has changed many other aspects of my life, just as it has for most people.


  11. I didn’t… I continue with genres I like or prefer :))


  12. nsfordwriter says:

    I’ve been re-reading more ‘comfort reads’ and classics, partly for escapism and partly because of buying very few books.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I don’t think the pandemic has changed my reading at all. I’ve always been one to read any genre so long as the synopsis sounded intriguing and I still do that.


  14. Karen says:

    Good question. I haven’t changed my genre preferences, I still enjoy my crime and historical fiction although I’ve found that my concentration hasn’t been as good in recent months. I am rather more keen on lighter reads at the moment which I’m trying to fit in – just as some escapism I think.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I’ve been weird about genres all year. At the first of the year I had a weird aversion to fantasy. I started reading a lot of thrillers. But now I’m back to reading mostly fantasy with a few thrillers thrown in.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Lorilin says:

    I read less because my young kids are full-time remote. But I’ve actually branched out into mystery/thriller, which I didn’t really read before. Sometimes I can handle the happy stuff, but sometimes it just depresses me more. 🤷🏼‍♀️

    Liked by 1 person

  17. I have definitely changed genres and reading habits. Mystery/thrillers were my go to. I used to joke that I wouldn’t read a book unless someone dies in it. I appreciated how twisted Gillian Flynn’s female villains were. The darker the better.

    Now, I read more historical fiction and coming of age books. Redemptive fiction is wonderful and of course anything with a happy ending. I’ve also let a little romance slip in. Not full on romance – I can’t handle that yet but historical fiction with a love story mixed in is ok.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. Aidan says:

    This is a great question and it has been interesting to read the responses so far. I will say that it did not significantly change my appreciation for the genre I read most and blog about – I remained enthusiastic, though I didn’t find that all the extra time led to more reading. Rather I found that I would dip into books more casually than usual spreading out my reading into twenty or thirty minute chunks rather than one big cover-to-cover read. If there was a change about the type of book I read it related to style. I favored books written in a more direct voice leading me to increase the amount of noir and hardboiled fiction I read and dial back a little bit on puzzler-style or impossible crime mysteries. I put most of that down to concentration issues on my part! Stuff had to grab me faster than before or else I would ultimately DNF it. Slowly my reading style has been shifting back over the past few months though it has taken a conscious effort on my part. Unfortunately I am still DNF’ing more than I would like…

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks Aidan. It is so interesting to learn how the pandemic has influenced different readers in so many different ways. You’ve brought up a recurring problem -CONCENTRATION. It would seem that part of our minds are dwelling on world affairs so that our concentration is lacking.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve noticed that I my concentration has been lagging as well. At times I finish a chapter and realize I cannot tell you what happened and have to reread it over again. I’m not able to dnf most as them are ARCs. I find that the Teaser Tuesday meme has helped some with my focus as I am searching for those 2 critical sentences. For backlist books I try to completely immerse myself in the book by listening to the audiobook while reading print book. This only works with some narrators though.

      Liked by 1 person

  19. Carol says:

    Back in March I couldn’t read anything except light escapist chick lit which I avoid normally! Gradually over the summer I was able to focus on heavier reads. I’m still enjoying light women’s fiction more than usual!

    Liked by 2 people

  20. Fab post Lynne and yes I definitely have! I’m not reading or listening to so much historical fiction and I’m leaning more towards children’s books. They’re shorter and which suits my attention span as it’s all over the place at the moment.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I agree that it is hard to maintain attention on longer books with so much on our minds. Children’s Books (and children) can provide a bright distraction to a gloomy world. Thanks so much Nicki.


  21. LucciaGray says:

    To answer your question, I have been reading across genres and out of my comfort zone, as a self-imposed, necessary discipline, since I started writing and publishing about 10 years ago. My preferred genres are historical epic dramas and psychological thrillers, but I alternate with light and feel good romance to relieve the accumulated tension! There is a lot to be said for these last two genres. They definitely make me feel better:)

    Liked by 1 person

  22. The short answer is no. I’ve continued to read the genre I love – historical fiction – with the occasional branch out into other genres. So I guess you could say I’ve stayed in my comfort zone. What it has affected is reading more of the books I already own and, on the odd occasions I have purchased, I’m likely to do so via independent bookshops. I’ve also had a good sort out and would have been heading off to my local charity bookshop if UK Lockdown 2.0 hadn’t happened.


  23. Rosie Amber says:

    Yes, definitely! Escapism here I come! I have enjoyed travelogues about times and places so far from me that I am rocking armchair travel. I also need the ‘feel-good’ factor in romance, any romance as long as I’m left feeling warm and cosy. Don’t worry, you are not alone in changing your reading comforts, I’m hearing it from lots of readers.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Pink Roses says:

    Hello Fictionophile, interesting question, and the answer is yes, I have changed genres somewhat. For the first time I’m dipping into Cosy Mysteries, and reading more Fantasy, specifically James J Cudney and D.Wallace Peach – both of whom I met here on WordPress. More escapism in the face of Covid? Perhaps, but I’m loving both genres now. I think we’re both on the same path, just slightly different directions. Happy reading to you!

    Liked by 2 people

  25. My first reaction was to say no. But one minute later, I realized that for the last few weeks,I’ve added a lot of romance books to my shelf! And, I’ve shoved my dystopian books to the back.

    I’m craving “feel good” right now. The combination of the pandemic and elections was just too much. I’m also watching a lot more Hallmark movies these days. Normally I don’t start that until December.

    So, whatever works!

    Liked by 2 people

    • EXACTLY Jonetta. I noticed that I was rearranging my TBR queue and placing women’s fiction and family sagas ahead of crime. Unusual for me. I wasn’t sure if it was the stresses of today’s world or simply the fact that I’m getting older.

      Liked by 1 person

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