Likeable characters with lives I might want to live vicariously
February 8, 2013 5:38 PM Subscribe
I've been reading a lot of bleak books lately, often with antiheroes. Now I would like the opposite of that. I don't mind if some bad things happen, of course, or if there's conflict - usually that's kind of necessary for a good story. But I would like it if at least one of the main characters were someone I would want to be friends with. And if some of the stuff that they do or that happens in their lives makes me smile.
I like mystery novels (esp "cosies" like Agatha Christie, Ngaio Marsh, Dorothy Sayers, but also e.g. Laurie R King, Ruth Rendell, Elizabeth George, Patricia Cornwell) some sci-fi (e.g. Iain Banks, Charles Stross, Neil Stephenson, Vernor Vinge, Dan Simmons) and otherwise mainly non-genre stuff. Not usually a fan of historical fiction, but I've read a few that I enjoyed. I rarely like fantasy (exceptions are Terry Pratchett, Charles Stross's Laundry series, Lois Bujold, Neil Gaiman), am not a fan of thrillers and I've never really met a romance novel I liked. "Chick-lit" is okay if a romance isn't the only plot point. Young adult fiction is fine too.
Bonus difficulty: I would like to borrow these books from my local library. It does get new books on a good schedule, so being recently published isn't a problem, but it is still quite small and doesn't tend to have little-known books. So things that have been popular in book clubs or at least where you know one or two other people who have read it are more likely to be available.