I am turning 30 years old this year, and it has taken me about 24 years to realize that what I read should not matter to anyone else. And, even more unfortunately, that what other people read should not matter to me.
Because in the end reading is about immersing yourself in a world that makes you happy. And who are we to judge each other for what in those worlds makes us happy.
I read romance novels. I love romance novels. Some of them.
I read fantasy. I read YA. I have a hard time reading literary fiction, not that I don’t love some works of literary fiction but my brain feels better when I’m in an urban fantasy world, surrounded by the supernatural.
You can judge me for it if you want, but I’m going to let my freaky little book flag fly.
However just because I read these things, and enjoy them does not mean there cannot be discourse surrounding certain books.
We can enjoy books and still be critical of their content. But when it comes to talking to someone who loves something that deserves criticism, is it not better to approach them gently instead of confront them? Perhaps they don’t know, or understand what might be problematic in the book they’ve just read.
Criticize the content, not the reader.
After all, aren’t readers supposed to be more compassionate?
17 books in January, 8 in February, 10 in March, 6 in April.
I started off this year strong, and now I’ve hit a slump.
It’s not that I don’t want to read, I absolutely do, but when I look at my shelves, most of which contain my TBR pile I’m downright overwhelmed.
I’m sure this isn’t a common feeling amongst those who read a lot, the thought of never finishing the books you own, the fear of possibly not enjoying those you haven’t read but have spent some hard earned cash on.
In a rare event, I’ve been reading the same three books since the beginning of April. Meg Cabot’s The Bride Wore Size 12, Patricia Briggs’ Dead Heat and Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes.
As you can see, none of these things or rather, books, are like the other. But yet none of them seem to be capturing my attention.
So what is a reader to do? When all she wants to do is lounge outside and read a book, but nothing seems to be capturing her attention.
My to be read list is more than eighty titles long. I know, I’ve heard all the jokes. I have more books than time. I am an addict. I might need some sort of twelve step program.
Sometimes I even find myself getting overwhelmed by what I should read.
The solution came in a post I saw on Book Riot over a year ago, and so I’ve kept up with this little project, and re-did it this year. The to be read jar/box/container/country/island.
I simply took note of the books I need to read, and own, those on my shelves, virtual or otherwise, wrote the titles down on paper in fun colours, found a box and voila. To be read, whenever I can’t make a decision on what I want to read next.