Let's Talk Bookish; Predicting Trends
It's Friday and time for a new Let's Talk Bookish post, courtesy of Literary Lion and Eternity Books. The theme of the week was predicting (book) trends and book trends in general.
Before I start properly, I just want to point out that I'll probably write about both tendencies and trends both in Norway and the English-speaking book industry, as I live in Norway, but write a bilingual book blog.
Some things that I've picked up in terms of trends are the fact that a lot of #OwnVoices books have been published in English, which I think is a really good thing in terms of diversity and representation. Also, the #OwnVoices-voices do deserve to be heard, especially as they know more about how their lives are than let's say white, straight, and Christian authors? Like, I personally know very little about how life is as a Black or Asian person, so I would for obvious reasons struggle to write a novel about it in a proper manner, if you know what I mean.
A trend that I both love and hate at the same time is historical fiction about WWII. As a history buff, I can easily spot historical inaccuracies when I read and I've noticed there's in a lot of the cases quite a few of them in novels, unless the author knows their stuff. One of the few authors I actually dare to read in terms of historical fiction about WWII is James Holland, as he is an historian in addition to being an author, so he knows what he's talking about.
Another issue with the WWII historical fiction is that I sometimes feel like authors look at it as a "playground" and make it too lightweight/fluffy, especially when it comes to concentration camps. It has been instances where I've almost wanted to scream "Auschwitz isn't a genre, for crying out loud", due to the high focus on it in historical fiction. And please don't even get me started on how much I dislike both The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris and The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne.
Alright, WWII historical fiction rant over. Something I would love to see as bookish trends are more diverse books in general in addition to #OwnVoices books, especially more LGBT+ books. That said, Norwegian publishers need a bit of a kick in the rear when it comes to both #OwnVoices books and diverse books, as I feel it's a bit whitewashed to say it the least (at least in terms of bestsellers), as well as too straight/male/Christian-oriented.
So if anyone in the Norwegian publishing industry reads this - can you pretty please publish more diverse books? And don't even try with the "no one is buying the books". The reason we don't read it is because you don't publish it and therefore we need to buy/read English books in order to get our hands on the diverse books we crave.
In conclusion, book trends have some perks as well as some crappy sides, but if anything, the very least they do is making things a bit more interesting.