As of today, no more kids’ books or young adult books for me because, well, they’re just not as good as adult literary books.
Truly, what was I thinking? A grown up reading books written for kids?
Thanks to insightful, persuasive essays such as Adults Should Read Adult Books, I now know that there are books for adults! As that writer pointed out, “I don’t know [anything about whether The Hunger Games is good or not] because it’s a book for kids. I’ll read “The Hunger Games” when I finish the previous 3,000 years of fiction written for adults. ”
A book for kids? What was I thinking? Obviously, our world should be a Logan’s Run world, where not only are we strictly segregated by age but what we read, watch, and enjoy is likewise kept strictly into categories with no overlap.
And if I wasn’t convinced by that, there is also the Slow-Books Manifesto, where I learned that only literary books play “with language, plot structure, and images,[and] challenges us cognitively even as it entertains.” Apparently, I’ve been wrong when I’ve been challenged by young adult books or genre books; I’ve been wrong that those books play with language, plot structure and images. What. Was. I. Thinking.
Obviously, I couldn’t think the right way because I read the wrong books. I have seen the light! The Slow-Books Manifesto even gives me a guarantee: “when has anyone ever felt anything but satisfied after finishing a classic.” (And those of you who disagree, well, like me, you must be doing it wrong.)
April Fools’ Day!
I’m not quitting young adult books! I’m going to continue to read books based on my interest, not on publisher categories. I’m going to continue to read widely across all genres. I’m going to read for a variety of reasons: for windows and mirrors; for escape and for safety; to be reassured and to be challenged; for entertainment and for information.
I will not be ashamed of my reading choices (or, for that matter, my TV or movie choices) because someone else has drawn an arbitrary line in the sand about what people “should” and “shouldn’t” do in their personal reading and viewing lives. While I’m at it, other things that won’t be the subject of judging: music, games, sports — well, you get the idea. I’m no better or worse than the person who loves fashion or football, and to say I am because I read books is, well, shallow.
Heck, if all you want to read is adult literary fiction? That’s fine, too! Just as there’s no reason for me to not read young adult books, there is no reason for you to read them. Read what you want.