Do we think about history, social mores and pressures, themes, or the moral of the story when we read a book? Possibly not, but these are some of the driving forces behind the writing of a story and what makes a story interesting enough to read or listen to. What is the difference between a story that the average populace puts down, never to be read again, after the first few pages to a chapter and a story that the average populace reads from cover to cover without much thought to eating, sleeping, or taking necessary breaks? A story that was extremely popular a hundred years ago might not be more than an interesting blast from the past if read today.

Stories that continue to be relevant regardless of the timeframe discuss themes that affect people regardless of the era. Popular topics that continue as interesting beyond their era of origin include family and family ties, survival (farming, ranching, wilderness, etc.),  and striving against stacked odds.  These topics are interesting, because people relate to them regardless of when they occurred or will occur (Fantasy & Sci-Fi).