There has been very little going on in my life, literary wise. I was home this weekend, grabbing some things for a my dorm and spending time with the parental units. We made peanut butter cookies, talked about classes and the movies we've seen recently (Me - Thor, Them - Paul), and generally ate until I wanted to collapse into a ball on my bed. It was nice being the only one sleeping in a bedroom. Nice and quiet and uncluttered.
What I've been thinking about, book wise, it was makes a novel realistic. I'm thinking mostly of Jodi Piccoult and Nora Roberts in this case. They really do their research, and add those tidbits that bring you into a scene so it wraps you up like a blanket. For instance, instead of saying "They made cookies, spilling ingredients everywhere." they say, "They made oatmeal raisin cookies, spilling flour and nutmeg on the linoleum floor."
Much more specific. George R. R. Martin does the same thing, describing the importance of the different kinds of clothing and weapons, and how these things indicate the world the characters live in, and what it means about the character.
I've noticed that in many young adult books, and even in some cases, fantasy, that these little details are left out. And I wonder, neutrally since these are books I love, if this is due to lack of research or simply that those details would be excessive and do nothing to further the story.
What do you think? Are those little details important to make a story realistic, or are they excessive?