Whatever whoever chooses to read is their business, of course, but adults whose taste in recreational reading ends with the YA novel need to grow up.Words of wisdom from Roger Sutton, editor in chief of The Horn Book, a literary magazine about books for children and young adults.
The best response in my book?
I’m rubberActually, Liz over at Tea Cozy makes a very good and suitably outraged argument on her blog, but it was that part that stuck out for me, because the original statement is so ridiculous and in so many ways that it needed a silly response.
Whatever you say bounces off of me
And sticks to you!
There’s the hypocrisy of the editor of a magazine about children’s literature blasting an entire audience of that magazine. There’s the absurdity of being judged not only by what you’re reading but why you’re reading it. There’s the stupidity of saying that what people choose to “read is their business,” but then making a judgment anyway.
My personal favorite part of the sentence is the phrase “recreational reading.” Apparently, it’s okay to read kids’ lit if it’s part of your job, but not if it’s your fun reading. Only someone with the luxury of reading books at work could make that statement and not realize how inane it is. Librarians, teachers, and booksellers don’t get time on the job to read the books they are expected to know and recommend. They read them at home on their own time, and the line between recreational reading and professional reading blurs, because it has to. After working and the after-hours reading and hello having a life, there isn’t necessarily time fit in adult books too.
In the comments of the original post, Roger tries to squirm out of his original assertion by saying that it’s really the people who are smug about only reading children’s books that need to grow up. But that only comes into play at about comment forty-six. I guess by then he was choking on the taste of shoe leather. For me, I only have one more thing to say about the whole thing...