Discussion Post: Blending genres

Welcome to my first discussion post. Recently I’ve been thinking about blending genres in fiction and how reading books that have done this has opened my mind to new ones. For me, when I read a thriller that does this, it always makes the book feel very fresh as it has taken me, the reader, somewhere where I haven’t gone before. It is a very good way of putting an original spin on a theme that has already been done. Readers of my blog will know that I mainly stick with crime and psychological thrillers. It’s a genre I feel comfortable with, but I do occasionally like to step my toe into something different.

Goldilocks: The boldest high-concept thriller of 2020 by [Laura Lam]

One book I’ve read recently which has done what I described above very well is Goldilocks by Laura Lam. This book is described as a thriller, and it certainly has aspects of that, but it is also a science fiction novel. Set in the not too distant future; a group of women steal a spacecraft destined to take them to a potential new home for humanity; an exoplanet which can harbour life. But for one of the women on board, there is something far more important at hand. Before reading this book, I would never have considered reading a science fiction novel. I’ve watched science fiction shows such as Doctor Who and films such as The Martian but I’ve never thought about reading science fiction novels. I don’t think I could read a straight science fiction book, but something that does something similar to what Goldilocks has done, I would really be interested in reading. So if you have any recommendations, please let me know. If you’re interested in finding more about this book, you can read my review by clicking here.

Another book which blends genres well is Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough. I read this a few years ago now, and I still haven’t forgotten that twist. Sarah Pinborough blends the psychological thriller genre with the supernatural, and it works really well. This book is being turned into a Netflix program, so it’ll be really interesting to see how this translates onto the screen.

The Shape of Night took me completely by surprise. In fact, I still haven’t managed to get some of the scenes from this book out of my head. If you want a taste of what this book is like, a few of my blogger friends and I have dubbed this book ‘Fifty Shades of Casper.’ Those of you who have read it will know why. I need not say any more. I don’t think the paranormal romance genre and the thriller genre go very well with each other, but others may have a different opinion to me. But I certainly don’t think I’ll be opening a door into this world again.

The Memory Chamber: An elegant tale of love and loss by [Holly Cave]












I loved The Memory Chamber by Holly Cave. Again this is a thriller that dips into the world of science fiction. There’s also a hint of romance. In the future, we have the option to build our perfect Heaven for when we die. The lead protagonist, Isobel, designs Heavens based on people’s specific wishes. Once that person dies, their cells are uploaded into a computer so that they can then live in an almost dream-like state.


These are just a few examples of books I’ve read that I chose to cover. I’d love to know your thoughts on this topic. Is there a genre blend that you’d particularly like to see, or are there ones that you think should not mix at all? Has reading books similar to the above sparked an interest in a genre which you haven’t thought of reading before?

14 thoughts on “Discussion Post: Blending genres

  1. Interesting post. I myself mainly read high fantasy, but I dabble in sci-fi and horror and the occasional mystery. And I do like when genres mix. As long as the characters are interesting, I’m ok with whatever. 🙂
    Maybe you’d like the Dresden Files? I haven’t read them myself yet, as they’re on my TBR list. But it’s about a detective/magician in modern New York (if I recall correctly) that solves crimes and stuff of a magical and paranormal nature. A favourite sci-fi of mine is “Prey” by Steve and Stephanie Perry. It’s about aliens and the predator (from the movies). Very very good! Hunters Planet is a good follow up, but not as good as the first. Otherwise, I’d recommend you to try out Alistair Reynolds’ sci-fi books. He’s a very good writer. Maybe Brent Weeks’ first series could be something too? It’s about an assassin in a mild medieval fantasy setting.
    Currently, I am attempting to write an urban fantasy mystery. Far from done, but it’s a fun challenge to bring fantastical creatures into a modern big cityscape and have police running after a mysterious murderer. 😛

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  2. Dark Matter by Blake Crouch is a good blend of thriller and sci fi which you might like, and Underground Airlines by Ben H. Winters is a thriller slash alternative history which I really enjoyed.

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  3. Reblogged this on Buried Under Books and commented:
    Crossgenre is way up there on my “favorites” list and I especially love the Nightside series by Simon R. Green. I also highly recommend Oasis by Katya de Becerra and the Thursday Next series by Jasper Fforde.

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  4. I’ve said fairly often that a detective should be able to fall in love while chasing a werewolf through a space station. I’ve written books to prove it. Mashup is my favorite genre, because I think about the characters more than the genre of the plot.

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