This post is inspired by the website Noblebright and by the post Noblebright vs Grimdark (and by Is Noblebright a new fantasy sub-genre? and Geeking out over Noblebright and a kboards discussion on the topic).
Have you heard of noblebright yet?
I love the idea of having an alternative to grimdark, having a genre full of hope and heroic characters who are willing to die for what’s right. Most of this is because my mood is so affected by what I read. When I’m reading gritty tales about assassins or torture, I get grumpy. When I have a beloved tale I’ve read over and over that carries themes of hope, happy endings, and love conquers all, then I’m a cheerier person to be around. Guess which my family prefers?
I now have a Goodreads bookshelf dedicated to noblebright books.
I see that a bunch of Middle Grade books ended up on there, and I wonder if that is because 12-year-olds are just naturally hopeful, the genre is often like that, or if it’s because I really like MG books. Hmm. Also, MG books don’t shy from having discussions of morals or having adults reprimand MCs for acting selfishly or rudely. Maybe this helps MG MCs more likely to be unselfish and nice, which feels heroic to me?
The last two weeks, I was able to start half a dozen conversations discussing the idea of noblebright fantasy and what it means and which sort of books belong. Two or three of the conversations were with people I had just met! I don’t like to immediately start telling strangers that I’m an author and they should buy my books. That just comes across as self-centered and single-minded (but you should go buy my books here, and give me good reviews while you’re at it!). Instead, the other people and I still got to talk about books, but we learned something, too, about each other and our tastes in books.
Do you prefer noblebright or grimdark, and why?
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