There’s been a lot of talk of reading women authors in 2014, and I love it. Of course I do. But when the trend started, more than one person I know said that he or she planned to use this opportunity to really catch up on all of the books they should have been reading this whole time: literary classics, canonical literature, books you’re allegedly supposed to have read in order to be what some consider an informed person.
When you say you want to read women authors in 2014, I want you to do that. But I don’t want you to read The Classics. If you want to, go for it. But I don’t want you to. I don’t want you to read books you can download for free online. You can do better. With this kind of commitment, you can really do better.
I want you to read a book from every genre, or at least a lot of them. I don’t want to hear you say that you aren’t really interested in chick lit or mysteries or romance. I know not every genre is for everyone, which is totally fine, but I also want you to know what you’ve been missing. Don’t be the picky eater of the book world. Maybe you don’t know that you like thrillers now because you didn’t like the ones you read when you were in high school. Maybe you’ve never tried “book club fiction” and you don’t know that these are actually stories filled with not just emotion but the tenacity and ferociousness of any lauded bestseller. You can’t know until you’ve tried it, so what’s really holding you back?