Smash or Pass Book Tag

I’ve really been enjoying watching other book bloggers do the “Smash or Pass” book tag, so I was absolutely delighted when Celeste from A Literary Escape tagged me!  Becky at Becky’s Book Blog created the Smash or Pass book tag which is, I think, based on a trend from BookTok? Basically, for each prompt, you explain whether you would “smash” or “pass” on it. There are no specific rules except to link back to the creator and whoever tagged you (done and done!)

Okay, let’s get to the prompts!

Bookish Tropes

This one really depends on the trope and how it’s done, but I’d say overall SMASH. I do love seeing what authors do with tropes and how they put their own spin on them. It’s also a nice shorthand for getting a sense of what you’ll get from a book.

Alternating POV

This depends on the genre for me. In romance, hard PASS. I like to follow the story from one person’s perspective, particularly as so many authors do a bad job of differentiating between the two voices for me.

If it’s more general fiction, it’s a SMASH. I love multi-generational and family stories with alternating POVs.

Ambiguous Endings

I read a lot of romance so this isn’t usually a thing with the whole HEA expectation. But SMASH in literary fiction. Life rarely has a clear ending.


SMASH, particularly personal essays and memoir. I studied creative nonfiction in grad school so I write in this genre myself and love reading it.

Historical Setting

PASS. I have grown out of enjoying historical fiction for now, though I did love it as a kid.

Morally Grey Characters

PASS. I’m fine with complicated characters who make mistakes but I like to know that they’re trying to be good peopne and do the right thing.

First Person POV

SMASH. Love first person when it’s done well though I do think I enjoy a close third person a bit more these days for whatever reason.


SMASH for sure. I love audiobooks.


PASS. I reread favorites a lot when I was younger but there are just so many books out there that I want to spend my time reading news ones. If I visit old favorites, it’ll be through audiobooks at bedtime.

Classic Novels

I have a BA in Literature, so this may be a bit controversial, but PASS. I read so many classics during my undergraduate years and in high school that I feel like I’ve got a good handle on the so-called Canon and rarely feel called to pick up those books I might have missed during four years of literature syllabi.


This is more of a soft tap than a full smash, but SMASH. I don’t annotate much these days but I do like to read with a pen nearby in case a quote strikes me and I want to mark it off.

Cracking Book Spines

Honestly not something I think about. I’ll say PASS since I don’t do it intentionally but I’m also not devastated if it happens.


I may be in the minority here among romance readers, but PASS. I like the sexual tension and buildup far more than I enjoy on the page descriptions of two characters getting together. These scenes feel awkward to me and I generally prefer some steamy buildup and a fade to black. That’s not to say I don’t read books with lots of on the page steam, because I do, but I’m there for the love story not the love making.

Character Driven Books

SMASH. Yes, please.

Past/Present Split Timeline

I haven’t thought about this explicitly but thinking back on some of the books I’ve enjoyed in the recent past I have to say SMASH.

Heavy World Building

Soft PASS simply because I don’t read enough fantasy or sci fi for this to be necessary. I’d like to get back into fantasy so I guess we’ll see how it goes.


By now most of you know that tagging people makes me anxious, so I’m tagging any of my book blogger friends who’ve been waiting for an invitation to join in on this one!


5…4…3…2…1 Book Tag

Happy Sunday, book friends! I’ve seen a few different book bloggers participate in the 5…4…3…2…1 tag and love how simple it is, so I thought I’d join! Most recently, I enjoyed reading Jordyn’s post on Birdie’s Book Blog.

Let’s dig in to my picks!

5 Books You Love

Going by what comes top of mind for me immediately, we’ve got…

Well Met by Jen DeLuca

I do love this series, but the first book is still definitely my favorite.

People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry

I had such a fantastic, singular reading experience with this book that I think I’ll always love it. I took it with me to a Getaway cabin and read it in the woods in the span of one day.

H is for Hawk by Helen MacDonald

I’ve read this book so many times and take something new from it every single time. It is a beautiful memoir about love and grief and the relationship between humans and the natural world.

Waiting for Tom Hanks by Kerry Winfrey

I don’t think I’ve ever seen myself in a protagonist quite like I saw myself in Annie, a young woman who grew up in Ohio, obsessed with rom coms. This book will always have a special place in my heart for that reason.

Hawksong by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes

This is a beloved holdover from when I was younger and the book I blame for so many AOL screennames featuring the word “hawk.” I still reread it every few years for the nostalgia.

4 Auto-Buy Authors

Perhaps unsurprisingly, these come from the previous list.

Jen DeLuca

Most recently, I preordered the next installment in her ren faire series, Well Traveled.

Emily Henry

Book Lovers came out most recently and of course I’ve already read it. I’ll be preordering her recently announced next book when that becomes an option.

Kerry Winfrey

Though I don’t love country music or second chance romance, I had to snag a copy of Just Another Love Song.

Helen MacDonald

MacDonald isn’t as prolific as the other writers above but I do own all of her published books (even the poetry). Most recently she put out the essay collection, Vesper Flights.

3 Favorite Genres

  • Memoir/Personal Narrative
  • Romance
  • Women’s Fiction

2 Places You Read

I do most of my reading at home these days, either on the couch with Azula the cuddle curl or in bed before going to sleep.

1 Book You Promised to Read Soon

I’ve got a book tour coming up for Liz Parker’s The Family Compound, so I definitely need to read that one soon!

This tag was a lot of fun and super easy to come up with responses for! If you’d like to participate, consider this your tag and do let me know so I can check out your list!