Book Review, Literature

Confessions of a Book Snob

I admit it. I’m a book snob. 

Well, I should say a recovering book snob.

There was a time in my youth when I turned my nose up at anything written less than fifty years ago. I would speed through the book store to ‘Classic Literature’ as if the new releases and genre fiction were contagious. 

Shakespeare, Cooper, Tolstoy, Dumas, Wilde, Steinbeck, Verne, Doyle, Tolkien, Austen, Brontë, and on and on.

You get the picture.

Those were my people.

But then, suddenly, I was done. I had read most of what I wanted to read from the past. What now?, asked my book addiction. So, I turned around, slowly, with dread and anticipation, to face the other shelves.

So. Many. Books.

Those can’t all be quality books, said the snob. Well, sadly—as you know—they aren’t. But, what I found was a revelation: genres that didn’t exist prior to the Cold War, modern language and dialogue, new ideas or twists on old ones, quick reads, fun reads, light reads, dark reads.

All. The. Reads.

Now, there are a few genres that I still refuse.

If a book cover depicts a half-clad man supporting a lust-drunk woman, I just say No. Whether you call it Romance, Bodice-Ripper, Gentry Porn, or whatever, they have no appeal to me.

Also, I can’t abide anything graphic or gory. My husband can attest to the nightmare screams fueled by even the mildest of horror (like Supernatural—I love it, but I’m such a wimp!).

Other than that, I will read just about anything if it’s good.

 Are there any genres that you won’t read?

Are you a book snob too?

I would love to know, so comment below! 

If you are still suffering from book snobbery or just want some modern good reads, below is my short list!


A Man Called Ove • Fredrik Backman

All the Light We Cannot See • Anthony Doerr

The Book Thief • Markus Zusak

Historical Fiction

Saxon Tales (series) • Bernard Cornwell

The Kitchen House • Kathleen Grissom

From Sand and Ash • Amy Harmon


Outlander (series) • Diana Gabaldon

Arcadia • Iain Pears

Margaret of Ashbury Trilogy • Judith Merkle Riley

Science Fiction

The Uplift Saga • David Brin

Silo (series) • Hugh Howey

Station Eleven • Emily St. John Mandel


Flavia de Luce (series) • Alan Bradley

Dame Frevisse Mysteries (series) • Margaret Frazer

Merrily Watkins Mysteries (series) • Phil Rickman


Fever 1793 • Laurie Halse Anderson

The Penderwicks (series) • Jeanne Birdsall

The War That Saved My Life • Kimberley Brubaker Bradley

The Hunger Games Trilogy • Suzanne Collins

The Giver • Lois L0wry

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34 thoughts on “Confessions of a Book Snob

  1. Jessica,
    I absolutely loved this blog post. Yes! I too am a book snob. It’s getting more difficult to find great reads that whisk me away in story world and endear me to its characters. Your book recommendations are fabulous!

    1. Thank you, Tisha! It’s tough to be a discerning reader. I’ve put down so many books this year that just weren’t holding my attention, and I never used to do that. But I don’t feel bad anymore when I DNF a book! 🙂

  2. I hate to admit it, but I’m a book snob too. But I am trying to venture into the modern world. Thanks for all your great recommendations, Jessica!

  3. I had a lot of the same literary you did when I was a kid. In fact, I remember visiting a bookstore in Atlanta with my mother when I was around 12 and trying to buy War and Peace, but the bookstore’s clerk explained to my mother I was too young to understand it. So, I bough The Three Musketeers instead. I’ve read other Dumas books since then, and he’s still sits near the top among all my favorite authors. I read very little science fiction. I also don’t read anything with graphic sex or the occult. My four favorite genres are: history, biography, historical fiction, and Westerns. I really enjoyed this post!

    1. War and Peace may have been too much at 12! 🙂 The Three Musketeers was the better choice. I’m glad you enjoyed the post!

  4. I hate to admit it but I hate classics, I am more a contemporary YA or mystery book kinda girl, I also started reading poetry and who know? Maybe classics one day.

  5. I won’t read religious fiction or anything that has rape or child abuse as a heavy part of the story-line. I have read books where these things have happened but they are more inferred than graphic.

  6. I don’t think I’m a book snob, but like everyone, I have certain genres I’m not a fan of.

    P. S. I loved Fever 1793 and you’re the first person I’ve seen recommend it!

  7. I am not a book snob but I avoid books that seem dubious (read as employing cheap tricks to make me read LOL). But I have realized now that I should not be too wary of every book and let go myself. Best Decision Ever.

  8. I won’t read Romance or Erotica. I don’t like Westerns, or wartime stories with battle scenes, time travel, werebeasts and shape-shifters, or mermaids. Ha ha. I have been off royal court Fantasy lately, too, and YA Contemporary has to come highly recommended before I’ll even consider it. I will read older YA Dystopian I have missed, but not new ones. I’m a mess.

    1. I’m with you on most of those, except for time travel which I love. I’m not a big reader of YA, but I will dabble if I’ve heard good things. I love MG, though! My daughter and I like to read books together.

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