Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Book Snob.

Alright, I confess. I can be a bit of a book snob, and I'm not at all proud of it.

To a certain extent, it's been useful - there are much better things I can think of to do with my time than read a bad book. On the other hand, I'm sure I've skipped some pretty decent, thought-provoking books because they didn't seem to fit the bill of a good book to me (particularly novel-wise). I don't typically just judge a book by its cover (unless it's shelved in the Romance section :-p)... a lot more usually goes into choosing (or not choosing) a book.

Right now, though, one aspect of my book-snobbery is a bit frustrating to me.

You see, I have to read The Shack (Wm P. Young) for a class this semester. The thing is, I'm not really thrown off by the whole theological monkey-business that I've heard about it, or even the apparent "bad writing." Some people whose opinions I trust have found it to be thought-provoking, and I'm betting it will be. What throws me off is the scads of people who flocked to buy the book sometime last year (well, more like a year and a half...) just because it was the latest, greatest thing. Every time I look at the book, I cringe in mild annoyance at one person after another after another coming into the store to ask after it, not having the slightest clue what it was even about. And being quite rude while they were at it. For this reason, it kind of fits in the same category to me as the Twilight Series, anything by Nicholas Sparks and (for the longest time but not anymore) Harry Potter, to name a few.* For now, I have to put these adverse reactions aside and try to read The Shack with an open mind. Who knows? Maybe I'll be pleasantly surprised.

So, my question for you (likely few) readers of my wramblings:**

What books have I probably missed out on as a result of all this silliness?

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*I mean no offense to my friends that have read and enjoyed any of these books. I've been challenged lately to evaluate my reactions to these books and where the heck they're coming from.
**Intentional misspelling... seems an apt description of the combination of wrestling & rambling that happens here.

3 comments:

Justin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Justin said...

I feel the same way about Dan Brown. I want to read the books to know what's going on in our culture, but I also don't want to waste the time I could be spending on a worthwhile book.

By the way your commenting thingy here cuts off the word verification so it's hard to post comments. Might want to have Jeromie look into that.

The Schoon Scoop said...

Ok, I've read them all. Since Noel doesnt read fiction, I feel it my duty to read the religious fiction of the day so we can appropriately respond in a ministerial sense. I tend to find something I like about even the worst books out there. However I must confess I hated The Shack in a serious way. Be very glad you dont have kids yet. I dont know how people with kids get through it (esp little girls who happen to own red dresses with wildflowers on them that you subsequently have to dispose of). The worst part is that I didnt have any serious issues to the "liberal" view of God, I just thought it wasnt well written or resolved to dump people in the midst of such torment.

Alright, now that I've made my stump speech, I am totally enchanted with Kate Morton's The Forgotten Garden right now and highly recommend it. I think you would love it, if you havent already found it.