Across all of my genres, I am looking specifically for diversity (of all kinds), feminism, and geekery. I am especially interested in well-drawn and strong female characters, retellings, and interesting story-telling techniques (epistolary, unreliable narrators, lists, emails, texts, etc.) In middle grade, I gravitate towards smart, adventure-type books (especially with STEM) that will appeal to both boys and girls. In YA, I don’t want any romance as the main plot. I am more interested in dark, gritty themes (grief, guilt, forgiveness, mental health issues, addiction, etc), smart and quippy characters, and coming-of-age novels. Any SF/F needs to have a well-drawn world (especially when it comes to the culture), and a plausible reason why a teenager is doing what they are doing. My New Adult tastes are similar to my YA, although I will entertain romances.
I am open to all types of romance (though I prefer steamy and contemporary )and erotica, and prefer books that use traditional romance tropes and turn them on their head. I do not want kink for the sake of sensationalization, but will enthusiastically accept authentic representations of kink communities. For Contemporary Women’s Fiction, I like lighter fare (think Sophie Kinsella).
I am looking for lighter, humorous science fiction with unexpected heroes, as well as dark UF that borders on horror. I am looking for UF and created fantasy worlds based off of surprising places/civilizations (read: not American). I also like mysteries in these genres, and love strong, smart voices like Gail Carriger.
Dream books: a circus/carnival MG or YA, a contemporary YA anti-coming out story (straight boy and his two homosexual parents with a great, supporting relationship. However, boy is having trouble coming to terms with his sexuality and otherness). A “You’ve Got Mail”-style romance about FetLife (or a similar site). A great witch book. SF with the tone of “Eureka.” Romances with enthusiastic, verbal consent.
What I don’t want any of: popular Western imaginings of paranormal creatures (werewolves, vampires, mermaids, angels, demons, reapers, etc), political-based SF/F, medieval-based European fantasy worlds, quest books that don’t pass the Bechdel test, Chosen One plot lines, treasure hunts, and dystopian. Voices that are best described as “literary.” Romances with timid virgins and strong men.