Book Recs: 10 Books about Characters with Unique Hobbies/Passions

 
 

I love reading about characters who have a hobby or something they’re passionate about, especially when it makes a big appearance in the book. Usually these are things I don’t know much about, so they’re really interesting to me. And of course they add another layer to the character and help me understand them more.

That’s why I’ve compiled a list of ten books I’ve read about characters who have unique hobbies and passions! And as usual, all of these are sci-fi/fantasy because that’s what I read and what I blog about. Hopefully you’ll find something that interests you!

*I didn’t get a chance to link to Amazon or Goodreads, but I’ve linked to my review for each, and you can find the links there!*


I Heart Robot by Suzanne van RooyenThe Hypnotic City by Andrea BerthotCreatures of Will & Temper by Molly TanzerThe Glamour Thieves by Don AllmonThe Girl in Between by Laekan Zea Kemp

I Heart Robot by Suzanne van Rooyen (Violin)

Both of the main characters in this thought-provoking YA/NA standalone book, one of whom is an android, are passionate about violin, and music is a big theme in the story. [Review]

The Hypnotic City by Andrea Berthot (Theatre)

The main character in this feminist, historical, steampunk-ish YA book, which is part of a series but works as a standalone, moves to America in order to try and get a career in theatre. [Review]

Creatures of Will & Temper by Molly Tanzer (Fencing)

The main character in this historical standalone, inspired by Dorian Gray, is passionate about fencing, and it plays a big part in the story. [Review]

The Glamour Thieves by Don Allmon (Cars)

The main character in this M/M urban fantasy/cyberpunk series loves cars, to the point that it might even be considered a fetish, and the author uses the futuristic world to have some fun with that. [Review]

The Girl in Between by Laekan Zea Kemp (Sculpting)

It’s not a major part of the story, but the main character in this dark YA urban fantasy series makes interesting sculptures out of scrap. [Review]

 

Shatterproof by Xen SandersMagic Bitter, Magic Sweet by Charlie N. HolmbergGirl on a Wire by Gwenda BondKelpie Blue by Mell EightThe Utterly Uninteresting and Unadventurous Tales of Fred, the Vampire Accountant by Drew Hayes

Shatterproof by Xen Sanders (Painting)

The main character in this M/M paranormal romance standalone is a painter who creates artwork about Haitian life and faith. [Review]

Magic Bitter, Magic Sweet by Charlie N. Holmberg (Baking)

This standalone high fantasy wasn’t quite for my tastes, but it will certainly make you hungry reading about all the baking the main character does and how she infuses her treats with magic. [Review]

Girl on a Wire by Gwenda Bond (Wire Walking)

This YA retelling of Romeo and Juliet takes place at a circus, and there’s so much amazing description of the circus acts, including the main character’s wire walking. [Review]

Kelpie Blue by Mell Eight (Horse Racing)

The main characters in this sweet M/M paranormal book only competed in one horse race, but various different facets of horse-racing—from breeding the horses, to working the races, to actually competing in them—were threaded throughout the story and the plot. [Review]

The Utterly Uninteresting and Unadventurous Tales of Fred, the Vampire Accountant by Drew Hayes (Accounting)

Accounting may not sound interesting, but the main character in this urban fantasy series is so passionate about it, and it’s such a big part of all the books, that it actually is fun to read about. [Review]

 
 
 

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  1. Sabrina Fox

    I like the sound of the tight wire one! I adore authors who can transport you to an exact moment in time and I think feeling like I’m actually doing it would be amazing. Good descriptions are my fave!

  2. Greg

    Cool topic! I love the idea of theater playing a role in a story, since I think theater is awesome anyway. :) I know it pops up in YA fairly often but I’d like to see it more in adult SF/F too!

    And food! I’m always up for interesting food in books… :)

    Greg recently posted: Sunday Post #282

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thanks! I kind of did theatre in high school, so it’s definitely fun to read about. This is one of the only books I’ve read with it though.

      Food in books is great but also just makes me hungry lol.

  3. verushka

    The Glamour Thieves and the car kink there really did make me curious about the author pulls that off lol but accounting — if anyone can make accounting exciting, that should be read!

    1. Kristen Burns

      It’s pretty cool, actually. Some people have technological modifications and can connect with certain cars, feel what it feels. The accounting is so much fun in that series lol.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Tbh I’m almost always disappointed when I read circus books because they never end up being about a performer, or they are, but there’s nothing about the performing. So I loved that this one really delved into that.

  4. Lola

    Greta topic for a post! That’s one of the things I really like about cozie mysteries they usually strongly focus on a hobby, job or passion of the main character. I enjoy learning more about topics I don’t know as much about. And other genres have books like that as well ofcourse, but cozies are one of the genres I thought of first when you mentioned this. I always like seeing hobbies/ passions in a book that really get to be part of the story and you can get a feel for what’s involved by reading it.

    I recently read a paranormal romance book where one of the main characters was a dancer/ choreographer and the other had a ranch he really cared about. I also remember some books with hobbies or sports the character cared about. I also read a book where a main character was passionate about horses and it was obvious the author knew what she was talking about, it was quite fun and interesting to read about. And one of my current reads has a character who loves planning.

    I enjoyed reading about the books you listed here and which hobby/ passion played a role in it. I’ll have to look up your review for Kelpie Blue, it sounds interesting.

    Lola recently posted: Sunday Post #319

    1. Kristen Burns

      I thought of you when I posted this cuz I know you like this too! You do mention it a lot in reviews for cozies.

      It’s always the best when it’s something the author has experience with. It feels more authentic because they’re able to include little details you can’t learn from research.

      Kelpie Blue was a really sweet, chill kinda book!

  5. Sam@wlabb

    You have me wanting to read Girl on a Wire. I know it’s in my wall of books. And can I saw, I love this post. One of the things that appeals to me is when the MCs have a passion for something interesting and different.

  6. Laurie | Bark's Books

    lol, accounting. If the author made that interesting, I may need to read that book. I work with #’s all day and they do no thrill me in any way. That car fetish book looks interesting too :)

    1. Kristen Burns

      It really is a fun series! Maybe numbers would be more thrilling if they involved all the situations Fred gets into lol. The car fetish one is great! Also quite raunchy lol.

  7. Brittany

    The Utterly Uninteresting and Unadventurous Tales of Fred, the Vampire Accountant might be the best book title I have ever heard of 😂😂

  8. Gayathri

    I just realized I had not given much of a thought about this at all, until now. Let me try and figure out if there were anything I missed. Great post.

  9. Daniela Ark

    I have had the Girl in Between eBook since forever. Every time I see it on your blog I want to run and read it LOL. Now I want to read I Heart Robot too! I’m a sucker for anything music, especially piano and violin :)

    1. Kristen Burns

      Lol Girl in Between is a very mysterious, dark series, though it does get confusing at the end. I Heart Robot is thought-provoking, and it does have a lot of music stuff!

  10. Olivia-Savannah Roach

    Oh my goodness I absolutely LOVE the idea of this post! I did a video with something similar but I might do a blog post with this kind of theme sometime as well. I really really love when my main characters or side characters have a hobby they are passionate about and it isn’t the main thing about the book but just something they… do? If that makes sense. I love that a lot. I haven’t read any of these but I have bookmarked this post because some of the hobbies sound so good ^.^

    Olivia-Savannah Roach recently posted: Little Green Classics [4 Mini Reviews!]

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thanks! Ooh you should def do a blog post too! It gives a character so much life and realism when they have something in their lives that isn’t just the plot of the book.

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  12. Becky @ A Fool's Ingenuity

    These are some interesting hobbies and passions. I’ve read a few books with characters enjoy baking (usually contemporary reads though) but I admit I really like the ones with characters who have a passion for music and play particular instruments. I think the book that sticks in my head most for someone with a passion is Wintersong as the MC plays violin and writes music and it was just awesome.

    1. Kristen Burns

      I’m listening to a series right now in which the MC runs a cupcake bakery, so it seems baking is a popular one! Ooh I’m looking forward to reading Wintersong! I will get to it eventually!