Thanks to Epic Reads for the idea for this post. They posted 27 things they think should be banned, and I don’t agree with a lot of them. Though they did nail some good ones. Here is my bookish list of things to ban instead of books!
1. The idea that there are “girl” books and “boy” books
Books are books, people! There is no such thing as a girl book or a boy book. Books have no gender. And by trying to force kids to read a book that we think matches their gender, we are stifling their growth as humans. So what if your son wants to read about princesses or your daughter wants to read about the army. Getting kids to read outside their experience is so important for their empathy and ability to cope with life. So, down with this fallacy of “gendered” books, I say!
2. The prohibitive cost of ebooks
I mean, I get that there is a lot of effort that goes into producing a book. But when the ebook costs more than the hardcove?! No way, publishers. I am not paying $30+ on an ebook. Heck, I don’t spend more than $5 on any one ebook at a time. And don’t get me started on the cost of ebooks for libraries?! I mean, I only just learned about this but man it is awful.
3. People who sell ARCs online
As someone who would, quite literally, sell a kidney to go to some of these book events, I am so fed up with the people who give book bloggers a bad name! They do this by going, grabbing ARCs, and then selling them for their own gain. That isn’t what they are there for, people! Ugh. Just stop.
4. The notion that you can’t treat your own books however you damn well please
If you are borrowing a book from a friend or from the library, then yes, you should do everything you can to keep it in pristine condition. Don’t dog-ear, no writing in it, and no food or drink in the reading vicinity. But if that book is one that you own? You do whatever you damn well want to with it! You write, highlight, dog-ear, pour glitter on, and do whatever you want with that book. Break the spine. Break it again for good measure. And don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do what you want to with your own books.
5. Judging other people because of what they read
There are so many books out there, you guys. So. Many. And not everyone is going to love the same book. I have a secret to tell you. That is TOTALLY okay! If someone doesn’t like the same books you do, leave them be. If they like something that you hate, don’t try to rain on their parade. Live, and let live. And if you can do it maturely, engage in a discussion with them about it. I find this is a great way to learn about things I may have overlooked before. Oh, and reading a certain type of book doesn’t make you any better than anyone else, either.
6. “Firmly, yet softly”
THIS IS A HILL I AM PREPARED TO DIE ON! I hate this phrase. Almost as much as the dreaded “She let out a breath she didn’t know she was holding”. But this one is a lot less common, so I like to bring it up every now and then. I have yet to see an example of this phrase where it is used in a way that didn’t make me think it was lazy, awful writing. Come at me. (Please don’t actually come at me… I am smol and made of anxiety).
7. Canada getting shafted when it comes to ARCs, giveaways, author events, etc.
It is getting better now, but still not where it needs to be. I have only ever met one big-name author come to my city. And she is Canadian. Which is why she came here. Don’t get me wrong, Kelley Armstrong is amazing, and I loved meeting her… but seeing all these events in the US makes me super cranky. And when events DO come to Canada, they are in Toronto or Vancouver. There are ELEVEN other provinces/territories that need some love, you guys! And I know that the USPS has that media mail thing that is super cheap, but you don’t get to complain about shipping costs from US to Canada, alright? The reverse is about three times as much, and so many people in Canada work so hard to at least include the US. Sorry, I got a little rant-y there…
8. Grown-ass adults shipping themselves with teenage characters
I am all for adults reading and enjoying YA. I love YA. But it is a personal squick of mine when said adults are all over the teenage characters. It is icky. Please stop.
9. Having to search high and low to figure out what book in the series I am grabbing
How hard is it really to put the number and the series name on the spine or something? Or even on the title page? Please? Pretty please?!
10. *Strong* female characters
I have a whole post planned about this, but male writers are so guilty of this, it isn’t even funny any more. A strong female character is more than her ability to kick ass. Way more. And if you are a male writer and you have this in your blurb, I am 90% going to pass.
11. I don’t know if you know this, but periods are a thing
And they almost never show up in books. Especially dystopian books. Just once I want the main character to have to go on a supply run for tampons, can’t find them, and have to fashion something. Periods are a thing that happen. Get over it.
12. Not using your local library
Guys, I use my library so much. It is the only way that I can get access to the new releases I don’t have ARCs for, because I am broke AF. I don’t even have to leave my house to use my library, because their ebook selection is AWESOME. Libraries are amazing, and they offer so much more than just books. You can use the computers there, talk to the librarians about school projects, and a lot of them have book sales that are crazy inexpensive, but help keep the library going. So. So. Awesome. Go visit your library today, ok?
So, given the choice, what would YOU ban instead of books?
Stay bookish, lovelies!