…But, I have read them.
We can’t all be reading Oscar Wilde and Hunter S. Thompson all the time. Just like we happened to watch an episode of Gossip Girl or be dragged to watch 27 Dresses, these are the books I wouldn’t be caught reading. I chalk them up as me being a good reader who reads a wide selection of literature. I use the word “literature” very loosely here. My reputation now tarnished, there is nothing more to do than ‘fess up and admit to my literary sins.
A Twisted Half-Baked Rollercoaster
The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown
Let’s start with a minor offence here; The Da Vinci Code was “Da” rage when it came out.The hysteria around it aroused enough curiosity for me to buy the book – as a birthday present for my dad. Before I could gift wrap it, I was engrossed. The page turning mystery set in the stunning city of Paris drowned me, and I believed every single convoluted and twisted plot threads that it kept on weaving. For once I read a book, which did not romanticize Paris, but at the same time used the Parisian landmarks in a unique way. When I got the chance to visit the Louvre, where the main drama unfolds in the beginning of the book, I asked my friend, wouldn’t it be cool if we got caught up in an international mystery-solving spree with heavy religious undertones? A blank stare was the answer I got in reply.
Blood Sugar Sex Magik
Hollywood Kids – Jackie Collins
Sex, celebrities, drugs, kidnapping, prostitution, and the liberal use of the word “fuck”, what’s not to love about the Hollywood Kids, the nth book in her Hollywood series. As a 12 year old, I used to steal my mother’s books and read them late in the night, after everyone was asleep. This is one book from that time that is vividly stuck in my head. The story was nothing special, several Hollywood starlets and studs fucking each other, their directors, production controllers, assistants; basically whatever they could grab. Mix it in with a little mafia action, (not so) mysterious murders and a dash of eating disorders. Voila, it’s a classic Jackie Collins book. The good news is I learned how to conjugate the word “fuck”, if you know what I mean.
Love Story – Eric Segal
A good friend of mine who never reads recommended me this book. Apparently she cried buckets of tears and pleaded me to read it. She even gave it to me as a present. I do not remember the story very clearly. A spouse falling sick, followed by a lot of mourning and crying; meh. I remember one thing while reading the book though, that it was very contrived and jarring. Instead of letting the readers feel on their own, I felt the writer was forcing us to feel the emotions. I sometimes wonder if my friend read the book on account of it’s short length, which was the only good thing about it.
Reeking of stereotypes
Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus – Dr Voodoo Mumbo Jumbo
Self help books are not my cup of black coffee, reading this book made me realize why I like my coffee black and not saccharine sweet. My dear sister – a self-help book junkie – recommended this book to me, saying “It has some serious truths in it”. Perhaps I am a fool, but I did not find any truth, just a lot of hokum. The more I read, the more confused I got. The conclusion I made after reading the book was that I am a man, and I am from Mars. No, I do not like my books with a side order of rigid gender stereotypes, thank you.
Vampires for preteens & cougars
Twilight – Woman with serious sexual issues and identity crisis
How to explain this faux pas of mine? I do have a soft corner for vampires. From Bram Stoker’s Dracula to the Southern Vampire Mysteries, from Buffy the Vampire Slayer to the Interview with a Vampire – I’ve read and watched them all – so naturally, I had to read Twilight, to understand why mothers and daughters across the world were swooning. Oh, how I was cheated. The nefarious and tormented breed of vampires was reduced to nothing more than impotent, shiny, Tinkerbell-esque fairies. The protagonist was a lifeless girl with no spunk, no identity of her own, always being defined by the impotent sparkling vampire mentioned above. Stephanie Meyer single-handedly destroyed the credibility of vampires in all canons as the bloodthirsty creatures of the night. How can you sleep peacefully at night, woman, how?