My goodness, I read a lot of trash. This is what I’ve learned since I joined Goodreads a few months ago, a site where you track, rate, and review your latest reads.
Every few days, I get an update on what my on-line friends are reading. Invariably, they’re paging through the latest titles by esteemed YA authors, or the newest books on the Booker long list.
I, on the other hand, am still half-way through that innovative non-fiction I started reading last month. Oh, and the really poetic book that won all the awards in Asia? Yeah, I made it to page five.
I did read an entire fantasy trilogy, but I’m thinking I won’t admit to that… I may end up in discussions with weird people. (You know that Dan Bern song where he goes to a support group for people abducted by aliens and he tells his story and they tell theirs, but he doesn’t believe theirs? I’m like that with fantasy novels.)
Let’s see… what else? Oh, I read a book by someone I met once, and I didn’t like the book, so I can’t very well list that. In fact, I can’t list any book that I liked less than a 3 out of 5, because as an author I know how heartbreaking it is to see a 2 out of 5 on your Goodreads page and who could do that to another writer? Not me.
The only thing that makes me feel better about all this is an essay I read once by Robertson Davies called “A Rake at Reading.” He said it was important to read everything, in all genres — anything that catches one’s attention.
So that’s my plan.
Did you notice how I worked in Robertson Davies there? Hmmm? Good, classic, Canadian author. Completely respectable. Excuse me, I have to go list him on my Goodreads page.