Meg Cabot reminds us of the importance of reading for pleasure–and not judging others by the books that they read for pleasure. Meg used to babysit a girl who would only read the Sweet Valley High books, and her parents despaired. Meg would reassure them, and it turns out she was right; that girl got her PhD, and is now a professor of children’s literature. How cool is that? And what a neat turn around.
I loved reading that story. And I especially love how Meg summed up her blog entry: “So, I’m just saying. Don’t ever judge people by what they read, especially for pleasure. It doesn’t measure how smart they are, or what they’re going to be when they get older.”
Well said, Meg. And why should anyone judge anyone else for their reading material, any way? Isn’t it wonderful that someone else is reading? And don’t we all have our own tastes, needs, and reasons for reading?
I think it’s so important to read for pleasure–to read what moves us, what absorbs us, what makes us feel good, what entertains us–whatever we need at the time. Because when we’re forced to read something, it becomes a chore, homework, something to dread. And reading should be something to be enjoyed.
Me, I love all sorts of books that some people would turn their noses up at. I love picture books, children’s books (especially magic), teen fiction (especially fantasy and paranormal, but many, many others, too). I love Dick Francis, some of Harlan Coben, and super hero comics (especially with strong girls/women). Sometimes I hesitate to say so, maybe because I’m afraid of being judged for my tastes. But those books feed me. They each meet different needs. And reading should be a pleasure, never a chore (as it can sometimes become when there are a ton of books to read for review.)
Meg also mentioned A Chair, a Fireplace, & a Tea Cozy (yay, Liz B!) for her post on fanfiction v reading, prompted by an article in the NY Times.
Both Meg and Liz’s posts are great reading, so check them out.