Let’s Talk Bookish: Do you prefer male or female protagonists?

Let’s Talk Bookish is a weekly meme hosted by Rukky @ Eternity Books and Dani @ Literary Lion. Discussions pertain to topics related to reading or books. Share your opinions, and spread the love by visiting other “Let’s Talk Bookish” posts.

Prompts: When it comes to books, do you prefer male or female protagonists and why? Do you not have a preference? Have you ever not read a book because the protagonist was male/female? Do you think it’s important for children to read protagonists of the opposite gender from them? Do you feel like certain genres have more of a certain gender of protagonist than the other?

I prefer reading books with female protagonists and have often opted to not read books when the main character solely identifies as male, more specifically cis male. If there are dual points of view, as long as one of the main characters at least identifies as female, I will be more willing to read it. Not too long ago, a friend said that excluding books when the main character is male means there are a lot of great books out there I’m not reading. I completely agree! It likely does but it also means I get to read more of what I want. A lot of it has to do with being able to connect with the character as well as being able to live vicariously through the character. I grew up wanting to live adventures but was often told I couldn’t do things but my brothers were allowed to do them. Books give me the opportunity to do what I couldn’t. Also, if I really want to read a book with a male protagonist, I will. Just because I prefer female protagonists doesn’t mean I will never read a book with a male protagonist.

I think it is important for children to read whatever kind of book they would like without having to consider gender unless that is part of their criteria for a book. It’s all about what you feel is best for you and what you enjoy most. In school, children are required to read certain books. Outside of the classroom, they should be able to read what they want--obviously, parent approved and all that stuff too (to an extent…Heh)

Due to self-selection, I can’t be entirely sure whether certain genres have more of a certain gender/sex as a protagonist. If one was to look at all my books, it would look skewed toward female protagonists. It’s certainly possible romance novels largely feature female protagonists but many are dual points of view so wouldn’t that mean it can be viewed as both? On a different not, what I’m actually quite curious about is whether male protagonists written by women in romance novels would be considered accurate depictions of men from a male point of view? I guess that’s the long way of saying that I’m not entirely sure if there is more of one gender protagonist in a genre than others. Hah…Sorry.

What about you? Do you have a preference when it comes to the sex/gender of a book’s protagonist?

2 responses to “Let’s Talk Bookish: Do you prefer male or female protagonists?”

  1. “obviously, parent approved and all that stuff too (to an extent…Heh)” 😂 I definitely relate to reading solely female characters for the most part, especially when I was younger, but I also wouldn’t mind reading a male main character. Nowadays, I don’t even actually care about the gender of the character, it just depends on what the book is about and if it’s something that appeals to me. That being said, a huge majority of the books that I read still overwhelmingly have female characters because the genres that I read star them a lot more often. YA fantasy, mystery, and historical fiction usually have female main characters, at least that I have seen so far, so I think that’s the reason why I still tend to read more books with them.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I also love YA fantasy! You know, I can’t decide if most are female main characters or if I just find books that have female main characters. There has to be some kind of data out there right? LOL.


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