7 Tropes and Themes You (And I) Love To Read ft. Some Oddly Specific Things, Plus I Like Using Technicalities

This post got very long and all I have to say is that this is why you don’t let me use technicalities.

Plus!! I asked you all about the books you liked! Well. Most of you. And there were a lot that were helpful but I kinda forgot that there’s like millions of books out there and I haven’t read all of them. I know, it’s such a disappointment. (I asked here in case you were wondering!)

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So y’all left me books and most of them I had no clue about. So, I got the ones that I had read, and then I just pulled some others that are popular/I’ve enjoyed… was this the best way to do things, probably not. Oh well.

I’m going to be putting a major theme or trope or… thing (???? where has my brain gone ????) at the top so you can really get a feel for what the books are like, and then putting the two books below. (I did get very specific/technical with some of these,,,,, whooops)

Also! I’m doing what I should’ve done a long time ago with most of my posts and I’m making this two parts….. so many of my posts have ben 1.5-2.5k (or more…) words recently and it’s not good.

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41150487._SY475_yes no maybe soIf you’re looking for a light (ish) romance with some politics sprinkled through, these will be your cup of tea. Or coffee. Or water. Whatever your preferred drink is.

I read Yes No Maybe So after a reread of RW&RB and it didn’t completely flop so I’m surprised and really happy!! Becky Albertalli and Aisha Saeed have a really cohesive writing style which I adored. And then Casey McQuiston wrote a beautiful story and their genius is just insane!!! ❤


  • The politics! If you’re into American politics, both of them feature candidates and look at voting/numbers (i’m not a politics person)
  • The romance! I love both the ships in this so much, they’re both adorable and very cute ❤
  • THE BANTER. Look, RW&RB is known for being quite witty, but the banter in Yes, No, Maybe So is criminally overlooked!!!! I love it so much!!! Jamie and Maya are incredible – it’s a friends > lovers situation… but they don’t exactly meet cute.
  • The characters! Everyone in YNMS and RWRB (I hate YNMS’s acronym with every fibre of my being) is just so pure and should be protected at all costs. (except for Rafael Luna, who strangely reminds me of Lehrer from TFK? have no idea why though)

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0BFB3124-F47F-46A2-BE43-D67A7BC8AF0Cwhen the moon was oursSo many people – myself included – are kinda accidentally in love with TRC. The book I’ve matched it with, however, is underhyped but it shouldn’t be! TRC may not always be classified as magical realism, but I’m counting it purely so I can hype WTMWO up!! (If you can’t tell, I read it recently and it’s a favourite of 2020!)


  • Character relationships that are well developed!! The Raven Cycle has one of the most iconic friend groups in YA, with some romance sprinkled in (of course). Now, WTMWO is slow but steady in the relationship development department but Samir and Miel’s relationship is a beautiful constant.
  • Siblings that make you want to scream!!! The Lynch brothers and the Bonner sisters just make me so happy (and mad but that’s okay)
  • An incredible yet confusing plot line… and by confusing I mean I’m-in-awe-of-the-author’s-genius ❤

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993C1461-BA58-4604-8AD5-C6EBE1F9BBB330075662._SY475_These two books HAVE been compared to each other but I promise it’s not a marketing ploy. I just think that even though they’re kinda different, both have a strong found family set out of modern day times with magic!

One is sci-fi and futuristic, while the other is definitely fantasy, but they don’t feel too different?? I mean, I would NOT like to live in Ketterdam (for… obvious reasons) but space would be cool!!


  • The found family dynamic in these are so incredible I love them! Both have a beautiful squad that makes me laugh and cry hahaha
  • The adorable romances! ❤ I’m a sucker for the romances in these… but I will admit, in Aurora Rising… there are too many ship possibilities and I lowkey hate it!!

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041A1C87-3ACD-4048-B120-9B5B2AE46F66E53391A6-57E5-494D-8A33-B26FA8775C9FThese two just scream I’M LIKE THE OTHER ONE okay?? Literally…. I just can’t express my love for these enough – I try to, since I talk about them in almost every post, but nothing can do them justice.

Aristotle and Dante Discover The Secrets of The Universe and Darius the Great is Not Okay both own my entire heart and I don’t know what else I can say except please read them??


  • both feature teens trying to figure out who they are
  • both teens go through something big
  • both teens meet someone influential in their life
  • both are very very sad
  • both are very very gay (okay less so in Darius but oh well)

All of the above I love a LOT in books?? So I adore these automatically?? (There’s also talk of not feeling enough Persian or American in Darius and both Ari and Dante feel this way about being Mexican which is so important in YA and I loved it <3)

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74C40E50-445F-4B2E-9861-93855D82505441473872Look for me, both of these are just pure fluff while also being very very heartbreaking? Honestly if you’re looking for something that will break your heart but also give it the happy fuel it needs right now.. both of these will work.

Heartstopper is available to read here for free and I Wish You All The Best… ❤ I love both of these. IWYATB owns my heart a little more but I simply can’t recommend both of them enough!!!!!

I don’t know why I associate these with each other in particular because… I literally read so many fluffy and heartbreaking queer contemporaries and they’re literally my favourite type of book… but uh, I guess these two work PARTICULARLY well??? (The heartbreaking part is pretty minor in both, but it’s still there!!!)

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69753C67-1A4A-4016-AAA3-14B0F73BB6C734213299._SY475_These two are NOTHING alike except for ONE major thing but you know!! I’m totally not matching them because they’re like the only two historical fiction books I’ve read!! (that’s a lie of course I am)

Both of these give us a really good sense of Europe in the 17-1800’s!! (They also feature kickbutt girls with their slightly annoying brothers but that’s irrelevant since I adore Monty in a weird loveable way and kinda hate Wolfgang.. aka Mozart you know that really famous dad composer guy?? Him.)

If you have any historical fiction recs for me please!! I want them!!

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C4A15045-2F3A-4D1D-B583-F032F978A3EA35960813Autoboyography and Final Draft both have EXCELLENT teen writers who… have no idea what they’re doing and make bad decisions. Tanner, Seb, and Laila are all INCREDIBLE and my heart belongs to everyone. (YAFP is coming…)

This is featured less in Autoboyography but in Final Draft (and You Asked For Perfect,,,, read that too) perfectionism and academic struggle is talked about a lot so…. if that’s something you’re into go for your life!!

Both also talk a bit about questioning sexuality and navigating crushes on people who you definitely shouldn’t like, but at the same time it hurts not to. You get the vibe? (It’s a fun one!!!)

I love both of these so much and can’t recommend them enough. They’re the perfect books to close the first half on ❤

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do you love any of these tropes/themes/let’s-be-honest-they’re-just-random-things?? any recs for me? any other themes/things you’d like to see in a part two? (i’ve already written most of it.. but give them to me anyway)


45 thoughts on “7 Tropes and Themes You (And I) Love To Read ft. Some Oddly Specific Things, Plus I Like Using Technicalities

      1. It’s totally fine! Also, I want to correct myself, Serpent & Dove isn’t really forced marriage, more like a fake one lol. I don’t know any great books with a good fake marriage trope other than S&D 🙈 I think, maybe The Wrath and the Dawn can come close to that?

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  1. I can be picky about political romances, but RWRB and Yes No Maybe So are at the top of my list in that category 😀 They’re both adorable and the banter is so good! Ahaha I relate to accidentally being in love with TRC 😂 And I definitely need to read more of Anna Marie McLemore’s books!!

    “Coming of age but make is queer” truly is the superior trope, and Darius the Great is very high on my TBR at the moment. Pretty much any book with that in the description will go on my TBR, and Ari & Dante truly is one of the best examples ❤

    Ooh I had no idea that The Kingdom of Back had a touring Europe component, but now I’m even more excited to read it, especially if you’re comparing it to Gentleman’s Guide! I don’t think I’ve read any “disaster writer kids” books yet, but I really need to since it sounds right up my alley 😀 Thanks for reminding me about all of these amazing sounding books that I need to read ASAP!

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    1. RWRB is incredible ❤ Yes – WTMWO is simply amazing I hope you can read it soon!!!

      THE ONLY VALID TROPE. Aaaah Darius is… probably one of my top three books ever, I hope you love it!!

      I hope you love the disaster kid books!! ❤


  2. I loved reading about what tropes/themes you love! I really liked Red, White & Royal Blue and I have Yes No Maybe So on my TBR – so I’m happy to hear that you liked the latter! 🥰 I also like heist stories, so I’m happy to see Aurora Rising on your list, as it’s another book I’ve been eyeing. And I also need to read more books about writer kids, so I might have to check out Final Draft 😊

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      1. Oh! Um…I haven’t read this yet but I’ve heard The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch is really good! And The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson is really a fantastic read! I’ll definitely have to check those out, I haven’t heard of On A Sun! Thank you for the recs!💜

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    Also, Heartstopper is the cutest thing I’ve ever read and makes me squeal every single time (as you would know 🙂 )

    Ummmm…. a trope you could include for part two could be gays in space? (As I write this I’m
    thinking of the Aurora Cycle but oh well)

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  4. I love how specific these are!! 💗 I am a big fan of the “magical heist” (or just “heist” in general) trope especially with the found family trope. I also really enjoy the “secret heir” trope + “the quest” trope (e.g. Shadow of the Fox). 😊 This was such a fun post and I’d like ro read a part 2, too!

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    1. haha thank youuuuu!! well, a great heist-ish thing with found family is the webcomic on a sunbeam, i’d definitely recommend!! ah i’ve never read that but it sounds interesting!! (i barely know that trope haha – any recs would be welcomed x)


  5. Ah I love this post Rhi!

    Also, I’ve been on the fence on Yes No Maybe So, but both the comparison to RW&RB (my bby child) and friends to lovers has me SOLD.

    Omg “accidentally in love” with TRC is BRILLIANT. But also very true welp. My reread a few months ago ENDED me aghhh. I just,,, have too much love. I’ve been DYING to read Anna Marie Mclemore but their books are so hard to find in my country *sighs* but someday I SHALL.

    we are SO here for the magical heists. Apparently, the universe is screaming at me to reread SoC today, there have been so many signs lmao.

    So need to get to Darius and I Wish You All The Best!! (ari and dante and nick and charlie they BREAK me btw) And the books about writing YES WE LOVE.

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    1. thank you so much ruby!!

      RWRB is incredible, and I’d definitely recommend YNMS if you loved that!!

      I found an ebook of When the Moon was Ours – maybe that’s the way to go? I can’t find any physical copies here in Australia either haha

      If you like magical heists read On a Sunbeam! It’s a webcomic but I adore it.

      DARIUS YES. And I hope you can read Autoboyography and Final Draft soon ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  6. these are such amazing books!! you asked for perfect literally has my heart and i’m still surprised by how much I love political romances?! aurora rising has been on my tbr fOrEVer and when the moon was ours sounds so good?! amazing recommendation rhi! i loved reading this ❤

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  7. Love love love this post, Rhi! A lot of these tropes/themes are ones that I always enjoy when they come up in books.🥰 Magical heists are honestly SO iconic and I love the morally grey characters that they usually come along with (and that I instantly fall in love with) but I NEED to read more so Aurora Rising is going on my TBR right away. I also love coming age of novels and Darius and Ari and Dante pretty much have my whole entire heart. And YES historical touring Europe ones are so fun too! I also love historical fiction with a fantasy twist, like history reimagined…my favorite of which being My Lady Jane. Lovely post as always xx

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    1. thank you so much olivia!! for a magical heist i’d recommend on a sunbeam – the art and story is beautiful (and for a beautiful morally grey character i can’t go past the seven husbands of evelyn hugo) ❤ darius the great is truly a wonderful book – and i'll have to check out my lady jane! i've heard you rave about it, so it must be good 😉 xx

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  8. Magical realism & touring Europe are definitely my favorites! I’m currently on a magical realism kick, and I’m actually writing a historical fantasy right now, so I’m surrounding myself with those kinds of books 😍

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  9. So many tropes and themes here I hadn’t really thought about! 😅 Honestly I feel like there are just so many books in the world to read that it’s crazy! You could read a page out of a different book each day your whole life and you still wouldn’t run out of books, insane!! Thanks so much for sharing this lovely post and I just got The Raven Cycle for my birthday so super hyped to read ❤️

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  10. It’s so funny because I adore RW&RB, but not because it’s political. Most of the time I try ignoring books that are super political, since I like when books are a bit of an escape from reality! (Which isn’t to say that I don’t appreciate when difficult, real life topics are addressed in my books. I just find that when a book is mainly about politics and all that entails, I get stressed, which is never my goal when I read a book!)

    Magical realism is one of my favorite genres! It’s funny because I no longer reach for fantasy, but I will pick up magical realism whenever I can because I just love the writing that usually accompanies the story! I actually haven’t read any Anna-Marie McLemore though, which is really shameful of me! Do you recommend When the Moon Was Ours to start with, or is there something else I should read first instead?

    Also, for some reason I thought of Heartstopper as an LGBTQ+ graphic novel when I saw it, before I read your category! And I definitely have a bunch of books I love that fit into the LGBTQ+ graphic novels category! Some at the top of my list are On a Sunbeam and Bloom! But really in general there are so many fantastic diverse graphic novels, and I’m so happy about that! (I know this is totally off topic of the theme you actually mentioned for Heartstopper, but I’ve been reading some great graphic novels recently, so those were on my mind as I read your post!)

    This was such a fun post! I can’t wait to read part 2!

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    1. i definitely didn’t focus on the politics in RWRB… but i agree, it was amazing!! aah does anyone enjoy stressing over books?!

      i’ve only read WTMWO, but i really enjoyed it!! i’m hopefully reading dark and deepest red soon though, so i’ll let you know ❤ magical realism is so good, i know!!!

      on a sunbeam truly is fantastic!!! i haven't read bloom, but i might have to check it out ❤

      thank you malka!!!

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  11. I WANT AND NEED TO READ HEARTSTOPPER!! Just look at that art!! I can already feel all the fluffiness of the story 💖 Also if I can add to the list I would love to also include Check, Please! It’s another cute story with lots of pies and while it’s not exactly heartbreaking it still has its fair share of serious moments.

    I love historical fiction!! I have Gentleman’s Guide and still need to read that one 😅 As for recommendation, hmmm… The Watchmaker of Filigree Street! It’s set in 1940-ish era (if I’m not mistaken) and there’s also some magical realism element to the story.

    This was fun to read!!! You really just add more books to my already long tbr list 😂 I’m looking forward to part 2 💕💕

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Welp. I checked the timeline for The Watchmaker and it was 1883 😅 (please forgive me for the spread of false information)


  12. I really enjoyed reading this post! All the themes / tropes are lovely and amazing, and now I have some great book recs!! Lol when you love SoC characters but would never live in Ketterdam…and The Kingdom of Back is definitely a great example of how to do sibling dynamics between child prodigies. Thank you again for this beautiful post!!!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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