finding your reading alley

5:04 AM


(I was supposed to post this next week?! But I apparently am an impatient creature and I hope you all enjoy this first post!)

I read. I don’t read as much books as I wish I could, with school and writing getting in the way a lot, but I still aim to reach the double-digit numbers at the end of each year.

Most actually all of them, who am I kidding my books belong to the Young Adult age range. I’m fairly well-versed with the different YA books coming out every year, as well as the up-and-coming authors who write in the range. 

But still. Lots of times I find myself giving up on YA, thinking it’s all mediocre and all the same — which it’s definitely not, I always remind myself afterwards. I am starting to figure that more and more now, because of one reason: I’ve found my reading alley. 


I’m not sure if it’s just me (and a friend) who uses the term ‘reading alley’, but this is what I call a specific taste in books. This means to say, not a specific genre or an age range, but a sort of ‘vibe’ from books that you enjoy.


  • It saves you tons of time. Knowing which books you more or less will like based on the elements or storytelling method will save you from books that you’ll probably end up not enjoying.
  • It saves money! Books are expensive. Getting to the bookstore costs money too, when you think about it. You can save so much money by choosing books you know are bound to belong in your alley.
  • Your alley guarantees a lot of happiness and all of those abstract nouns! See: saved money, time, effort, + A good set of books you know you’ll love = HAPINESS

  • List down your current favorite books. See what they all have in common: it can be anything ranging from big families, Oriental settings, to books set in a certain era. 

  • Here is the blessing also known as the ‘Readers Also Enjoyed’ 
  • Use the Goodreads’ ‘Readers Also Enjoyed’ widget (as seen above). Search up on books that you love, and see which books that are similar to them! 
  • Follow and read book blogs. Most book blogs cite books that are similar to the ones that they’re currently reading / reviewing. 
  • Research and experiment!

I’ve found my alley consists of books with a lot of paranormal, unsettling cities or towns, mild horror in it, supernatural powers, a touch of magic, and unreliable / vague narrators.


Although, I have to say, even if you know your reading alley, you can never be 100% that you’ll like or dislike a book based on your current alley. Your alley can just serve as a guide on picking books — but it’s always great to try out new genres and styles and authors!

Will you give the concept of reading alleys a try?


- Andrea <3

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11 comments

  1. ahh yes! i totally agree with this! i usually read ya also. i feel like my alley is probably Russian fantasy worlds and bizarre magic since that's usually what i read, but i also enjoy a good contemporary with magical realism and a vague narrator from time to time. having a preferred alley does save me a lot of time picking out books!

    great post! i enjoyed reading!

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    1. Russian fantasy is always great! I've been meaning to check out more Russian fantasy YA but I've only read The Crown's Game + the Shadow and Bone trilogy.

      I've tried reading magical realism and while they are cool, especially the writing, it sometimes gets confusing for me? Paranormal / supernatural is more or less my alley. Thanks for reading! <3

      - Andrea at A Surge of Thunder

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  2. Your blog is lovely!!

    I usually read YA as well, and I tend to veer toward contemporaries or fantasy, but to be honest I'm up for anything that's well written :)

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    1. Thank you very much Opal! YA is the greatest for me, as of now. But yes I completely agree with you on the writing of books -- a book can have a great plot but end up bad because of the writing.

      - Andrea at A Surge of Thunder

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  3. My reading alley is definitely high fantasy and/or LGBT+ representation. HOPEFULLY (BUT RARELY) BOTH AT THE SAME TIME. Awesome post!

    Ellie | On the Other Side of Reality

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    1. High fantasy PLUS LGBT is interesting and a great combination! Have you tried reading The Impostor Queen? I've always felt it has a touch of LGBT in it.

      Thank you!

      - Andrea at A Surge of Thunder

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  4. I just love teenage romance books. SO entertaining! Loved this post, Andrea! Your blog design is gorgeous.

    https://guiliannamarie.blogspot.com

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    1. Thank you Guilianna! Romances are always fun to read as long as they're written well / believably :)

      - Andrea at A Surge of Thunder

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  5. Ahhh I've really been wanting to read "The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer." Would you recommend it? It seems very intriguing. :D

    katie grace
    a writer's faith

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    1. I really enjoyed reading it! It edges a lot on steamy romance a lot of the time which made parts of it kind of slow and boring, but it turned into a great blend of paranormal and science by the end of the trilogy, so yes I would stick the romance out!

      - Andrea at A Surge of Thunder

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  6. Oh, I've heard The Diviners is a wonderful book/series! As well as The Cresswell Plot. And EEK The Graces was so cool! I mean, it was strange and confusing and I didn't like River that much, but still awesome. My reading alley is all over the place??? I've just now gotten into contemporaries (MY LOVE) and like eek they're so cute and fluffy and I JUST CAN'T. But I will alwaaaaaays love fantasy -- it's what's been with me since the beginning. So, I guess my reading alley would be... "Cute fluffy contemporaries including romance with ALL THE FEELS aaaaaand gorgeously flawed characters (most likely with questionable morals) and a dash of magic. Or a lot." XD (And maybe dystopian??? Gosh this is hard. :P)

    Love this post!

    May @ Forever and Everly

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Hey, amazing human being. Thank you so much for commenting! Be sure to check back for my reply <3