What I wish I saw more in books

I’ve read countless books and loved them, but I also feel that there are parts of life that many books don’t mention. There is so much that doesn’t make it to the bookshelves.

As a disclaimer, most of the books I’ve read are YA fiction, so this is mostly criticizing that genre. But some of these points also apply to other genres as well. If not, let me know in the comments! How do your favorite genres compare?

Platonic friendships (male/female friends)

Few books explore the fact that males and females can be friends. Usually, they end up in a relationship with each other at some point. But it’s important to express how males and females can be friends too. The whole time.

Platonic friendships are valuable, so why shouldn’t they also be expressed in books?

Racial diversity

When was the last time you read a book with a character that wasn’t white? Even just a few years ago, this was a hard question for me to answer. I’ve been trying to expand my outreach and read more books with racial diverse characters.

I went to a panel called “Silenced Voices” at AWP that spoke up more about this. There are so many voices out there that we haven’t heard from. So many experiences we’re missing. I also watched a TedTalk as well about this topic before and wrote a blog about it, but I’ll reiterate:

Representation is important. The more we see from the world, the more we’ll realize how we’re all human and experience some of the same things. We also experience the world differently at times, and that’s important to know too.


As mentioned above, representation is important, including queer representation. It’s something we could all read more of.

For example, someone in a Discord chat the other day asked if we knew any nonbinary main characters. The question stumped me because I haven’t read any! I’ve only read two books with an out asexual character. I know one book with a dominant trans character.

It’s important to learn more about the world around us. The more we read and learn, the more we can understand each other.

Visible Parents

Most parents in stories are either divorced or at least one is dead. If they are there, usually they are glossed over or in the background. Rarely do I see a strong parent/child relationship in a book.

But parent relationships are important in everyone’s lives. We can’t all be missing our parents. (Or is this younger generation just children of divorce?) It’s important to have a good representation of everyone, and that means making parents stronger and visible characters.

At the end of the day, I do enjoy and like the books I have read. I just wish books covered the whole world instead of the world that sells well on a bookshelf.

6 thoughts on “What I wish I saw more in books

  1. Hi!
    Your topic is so interesting that I just couldn’t stop myself from adding my thoughts. The problem with books is that there is a whole treasure house available in different languages but they have probably not been translated into English or not popular beyond the boundaries of a country/community. There is so much to learn from books and I personally feel, a lifetime is probably not enough to do so. I am sure avid book lovers like you probably feel similarly. 🙂
    While reading this, I was mentally ticking off the books under the genres mentioned by you. A few came to my mind, a few of them by Indian authors….just for your reading list. 🙂
    I do not read Y/A fiction, so my suggestions may not be relevant.
    1. Platonic relationship… Mill on the floss came to my mind immediately. There is also a good novella written by our Indian Nobel laureate..Rabindranath Tagore. Considered a masterpiece actually. It’s called “last poem”.
    2. Racial Diversity…I come back to my earlier point about reading translations. Some classics in different languages are waiting to be explored, in my opinion. “A man called Ove” explores this to some extent and immediately comes to my mind.
    3. LGBT/Trans….Would recommend you to read “Delhi” again by an Indian author Khushwant Singh. There’s an interesting character in one of our epic-“The Mahabharat” who was a transgender and had an important role to play in the battle.
    4. Parents-At the moment, i too cannot think of one suggestion but there are certainly books which speak of parents.
    Apologies, if my comment is out of context and irrelevant to your thoughts. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for the suggestions! I’ll have to add those to my Goodreads.

      I agree that some may not be translated. Sadly, translated books are usually the smallest section in book stores where I’m from. I tried to find a good Japanese book once and was limited to about one row of books. That or they’re all about learning the language instead of stories written in a foreign language or translated.

      I’m trying to expand in that area. Since I’m learning different languages, I hope I can expand and read from many cultures in their native language eventually. I read a translated poetry book earlier this year and enjoyed it.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Love that you have shared some things you find lacking in books!

    I need my characters to have depth and diversity. Because of so many broken relationships and poor parents in books, I always try to write about family relationships and the idea that people (any people) can be friends without being lovers. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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