Yes, it’s a post about ‘those’ books. You must have heard of them. You must have seen stacks of them on display in your local bookshop. You must have people on Facebook or twitter commenting on them. You might even have read them. It’s fine if you have. I know people who have read them and thought they were great. I also know people who have read them and thought they were terrible. As I type this* the first instalment has received 2,657 5-star reviews on Amazon. It also has 1,875 1-star reviews. Not only is that impressive polarisation of readers, that’s an impressive number of reviews! Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone has only racked up a total of 1,358 reviews on Amazon and that was published 12 years ago. So, love them or hate them, people are reading these books. And when everyone is reading something it’s natural to want to see what all the fuss is about. So my first thought was ‘I shall read them’!
Me: But you won’t like them.
Me: I know, but once I have read them I’ll be able compose ranty blog posts about how poorly written it is and complain at length about it to strangers on the internet.
Me: Because it will make me feel smug and superior because my writing is better.
Me: Really? When did we outsell Harry Potter and get a movie deal for one of our books? I must have missed that. Who are they getting to play Devon?
At this point I back out of the internal dialogue and figure wasting any time or money reading books I am simply not going to like is not going to give me any bragging rights. It’s just going to make me the idiot who bought three books I wouldn’t like and wasted precious time reading them just because ‘everyone else on the internet was doing it’.
But this whole 50 shades fuss has been going on for a while now. I can’t let it bypass me completely. So, in the words of Rastamouse, I can ‘make a bad t’ing good’. Instead of reading the Grey books I will use the time to read three classic books that to date I have never found the time for. I have selected the following books:
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s ‘The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes’, because I’ve watched a lot of Holmes but never read any, and it was written by a Sir!
Mary Shelley’s ‘Frankenstein’. It was a toss up between this and Dracula. This won purely because we own a copy :).
Alexander Dumas’s ‘The Three Musketeers’. Because swashbuckling was cool before ninjas, pirates and vampires were.
I think I’ll see how I get on with those and maybe find another 3 books to read if I’m ever tempted again….
*I actually wrote this post some time ago at the height of the fad, but for some reason I didn’t post it, so I’ve just updated the figures and I’m posting it now. I still have to read those classic books after all!