Reading is wonderful. I love to read. But let’s face it folks, if there are abs on the cover, it’s not a real book. Words on paper does not equal literature, a lovely and amusing escape, sure; but not literature. Most book review columns focus on the top, new, never heard of, flashy, “Oprah liked it” bestsellers. But bestsellers are not called bestsellers because they sold millions of copies. They are on the bestseller list because publishing houses THINK they will sell millions of copies. And do you really believe that Oprah has read every book with her bestseller sticker on the cover? Gasp!!!
Most of the books on the bestseller list are completely uninteresting to me. Most are the same old story. For example, the story of four generations of women who overcome their past differences, and one shocking secret, to see that true happiness lies in family. Yawn. Or, top secret agent super smart guy has a short amount of time to solve a political mystery with the aid of an unrealistically beautiful woman who is an unknowing pawn in the scheme which he must save her from. Didn’t Dan Brown write that book five times in a row?
Quite often I find myself wandering around bookstores for an hour or more before picking up a title from an old, familiar favorite author from decades gone by. There are books I have read six or more times each, and not one of these have ever been on an Oprah bestseller list. So this is going to be a blog of not so much book reviews, but book summaries of books that everyone SHOULD have read, but haven’t. Or they read these books so long ago, that even though they can say they read it, they couldn’t actually tell you what it was about. Quick, without Google, what was the premise of Catcher in the Rye? What about Slaughterhouse Five? Uh huh…busted.
And not just all that “shame on you” stuff, but kids in high school are reading books that their parents have no idea what these books are about. And yes, these are the same parents that complain about what books teachers assign. Please, don’t be that guy. Or sadder still, how many people know that the “I am Legend” movie that came out is based on a very frightening book that ended totally different from the movie. The movie was mediocre, the book gave me nightmares for a week.
Read a book, a real book. Please. And if you can’t, won’t, or whatever, at least read my posts so you don’t make an ass out of yourself in public.