By Kristi Belcamino
A few months ago at Bouchercon in Long Beach, I met a woman who was interested in buying one of my books for her book club to read.
She asked me which book she should buy. Now, normally I would say start with the first book in the series, but she wanted more than that.
I told her that my two books in the Gabriella Giovanni series were a bit different—one was much darker than the other.
It is hard to recommend one book over another without knowing a little more about the reader.
Finally, as we kept talking the answer became clear when she said, "We won't read anything that has bad things happening to kids."
"You're going to want to read my second book," I said.
In all fairness, people don't complain about the subject matter in my first book. I'm sure it's because it is not gratuitous or there for shock value. It is written with the utmost empathy for victims. In fact, I've been praised for handling a distasteful subject in a manner that is palatable without downplaying the horrors of reality.
Are there any subjects that are taboo for you as a reader?
I know that some people won't read a book if anything bad happens to animals.
So, bad things happening to animals and kids can be deal breakers for readers. Anything else out there that might make you put a book down?