ORIGINALITY. Oh, so your wannabe boyfriend is something suspiciously inhuman but he won't tell you what and there's something keeping you apart? Yeah, cry me a river, I've read about 10 series with the exact same plot. Now, tell me that in a world full of nasty demons who want to kill you and your sister, you and your betrothed faerie prince (who is a jerk and you're much more attracted to the hot werewolf) must defeat Lucifer himself...well, then I'm intrigued. Why? Because there's NOTHING like this in the YA market at the moment (and maybe that's for the best, but the point was that it should be new).
NOT BEAUTIFUL GUYS. Yes, beautiful guys are cool and all, but they're in just about every paranormal book I've read, and I don't know where they're coming from since there certainly aren't many around here. Is it just where I live? Have I been deprived of male eye candy for my entire life while the rest of you see ten "beautiful" boys walking down the street a day? If so, I think I need to move. Sure, I get that because inhuman characters can look better than the rest of us, but there always seems to be the beautiful human who's in love with our protagonist as well. Where'd HE come from, and where are all of my lovable dorks? I WANT DORKS. I usually find a person more and more attractive the more I like them, so why can't that be the case sometimes?
|The romance in Fallen isn't very believable|
SMART PEOPLE. "Oh, there are murders going on in town, and I've been getting suspicious notes shoved into my locker threatening to kill me...better not tell anyone!" SERIOUSLY? No. Not smart. Bad character, bad.
A BELIEVABLE, WELL-PACED ROMANCE. "Even though we've only known each other for two hours and he's so dark and mysterious that he's barely said a word, I think I want to have his babies...." WRONG. Even if you don't tell us the whole conversation, just say that the characters talked and joked and actually got to know each other, it's better than having the characters sucking each others face when they've barely spoken three words to each other.
Brownie Points (not required, but very appreciated):
At least one character that can kick serious butt
A lot of music/band references
Interesting, smart, unique side characters
A good amount of humor
A villain that scares the poo-poo out of me
A good love triangle
Some paranormals that I'd recommend that include some of the above qualities are: Shade, Nightshade, The Iron King, Hex Hall, Paranormalcy, Strange Angels, Almost To Die For, and others.
So, what do you think? Did I miss any?