If you walk down the aisles of a book shop or a library or an abandoned Blockbuster Video, you might notice that every book, comic, and film has been neatly filed away into its appropriate genre. We like to split our stories up into genres and sub-genres so we know what to expect: we can reasonably assume that there will be no aliens in a contemporary rom-com, for example, and we know that every canine character in classic children's literature is going to die tragically before the final chapter. But sometimes, we come across a book that simply refuses to fall into line with all of its genre compatriots. Here are a few of the books that break all the rules of genre, because rules were made to be broken.
After all, the "rules" of genre are not set in stone. No one has officially decreed that hard-boiled detective novels can't break the fourth wall, or that sweeping period romances can't also involve space assassins. And these books do more than simply mash two popular genres together: they force us to question the way we think about genre in the first place. Pick up one of these genre-bending books for a story that will defy all of your pre-conceived notions: