Know what I'm tired of? Picking up a NYT bestselling novel, reading five chapters, and throwing it in the trash. Why do I throw away a perfectly good book, you ask? Lots of reasons.
I'll exclude the boring plot factor and even the bad writing factor because those things are somewhat subjective, and I guess someone must like the plot and writing or it wouldn't be on the NYT bestsellers list.
What I'm tired of is over-the-top obscenities, graphic sex scenes, and other vulgarities that pepper the pages of an otherwise good novel. I picked up such a novel recently. I was enjoying the story until I reached a graphic lesbian sex scene. I skipped over it thinking we'd get back to the story, but a couple chapters later, another lesbian sex scene. Into the trash it went. The book is still on the NYT list, but I never would've picked it up if I'd known what it contained--the cover copy sure didn't hint at it.
Which brings me to this question: Why aren't novels rated? Movies are; why not books? Rate the book and tell me if it's PG13 for violence, language, or sex. How can you even tell if your child/teen should be reading the book without reading it yourself? It's even more crucial in the age of digital books. You can download the first chapter for free, but you sure can't thumb through it for a quick preview of its contents.
I do enjoy Christian fiction, but I also like to be aware of what's selling in the general market, and I've come across some gems I would've missed otherwise.
What do you think? Would you like to see books rated? Would it help or hinder your book purchases?
PS This photo of my family (which has nothing to do with my blog post) was taken in California over Thanksgiving weekend.
Labels: novels, NTY bestseller, rating systems