As a library worker, there’s something I want to say to you.

You do not have to apologize for the books you choose to read.

At all.  To anyone.  You owe nobody any explanations; you need no excuse or “good reason” to be reading the book.

You do not have to be ashamed for wanting to read “bad” books.  You wanna read Twilight?  We got Twilight.  Need a banal, cookie-cutter-plot mystery or thriller?  Those are always fun.  Our regulars check them out by the towering stack.  Ask Betty for recommendations; she’s read them all.  50 Shades of Oh Fucking No?  We’ve got it, we even got it in large print.  Have fun.  Check out the rest of our porn too.  Oh, and the sex manuals are a MUST if you want to “experiment” yourself.  Don’t be afraid to ask; they’re here for a reason.

Want to read a book written by a huge asshole everyone hates and agree was a monster?  Yeah, we have those.  No, we don’t think you’re an asshole for wanting to know what was actually written in there, or judging things for yourself.

You are not too old for Diary of a Wimpy Kid, The Babysitter’s Club, or Captain Underpants.  You are not too young for Sherlock Holmes.  There’s nothing wrong with a boy reading The Princess Academy or Sweet Valley High.  There’s nothing wrong with a girl being into The Hardy Boys or Artemis Fowl instead.

You do not have to pull the shame face and offer me an excuse when you check out your books.  I don’t care if I got so angry at that book I threw it against a wall when I read it: you have the right to read it, and enjoy it if it’s enjoyable for you.  THAT’S WHY THE LIBRARY HAS IT IN THE FIRST PLACE.  If we only stocked pure, unproblematic literature everyone approved of, by authors of unquestionable virtue, we wouldn’t have any books at all.  Or music.  Or movies.  It would be utterly fucking boring.  And it certainly wouldn’t be a library.

About C.A. Jacobs

Just another crazy person, masquerading as a writer.
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