Reading Life

Banning Book Labels

*Today, I’m talking about banning the ever-present book label. I don’t mean any stickers you find on books. I’m talking about attributing characteristics to books. Books don’t need us readers shoving our opinions of what we think they should be onto them. And neither do the readers of those books. 

Do you label books? I prefer not to because I feel as though it gives people the wrong idea as to what they are about.

*Disclaimer: I’m going to mention briefly a couple of topics that are a hot debate with the rest of the world at the moment. Just be warned that I’m not picking a fight and I am not bashing any one person for the way they choose to live. So don’t attack me. Because I’m not attacking you. 

What is a book label?

A book label is any word or characteristic that we assign to books other than the genre that it is part of. A good example is when watching a YouTube video discussing books the youtuber will blurt out “This book is so feminist!” or “It’s so empowering!” or “It represents LGBTQ so well!”, etc.

Um….thanks for giving that book an agenda?

Why do we feel the need to label books?? Can’t a book just be a book and a story just be a story? When I’m watching a YouTube video or reading an Instagram post or a blog post and the person comes at me with a book label, I’m not going to pick up the book. I don’t care how much it meant to them or how amazing the story is.

I don’t want to read the book with that person’s agenda for it in the back of my mind. Their opinion of the book will alter the way I feel about the story whether I notice it or not. I want to read the words as the author intended. That way I get a really good idea of what the author is trying to tell me.

For the Freedom of Reading

So, dear readers, book reviewers, and discussers of books, please, please stop labeling the books. Let the author’s words speak for themselves. Stop giving their words agendas.

And for the love of all that is freedom, stop forcing your book opinion onto fellow readers. Because they have the right to read the book for what it is and the story it tells.

Happy reading label-free books,

Alicen

P.S. Do you hate book labels too? Let me know in the comments what your least favorite book label is!

P.P.S. In this post I discuss how I feel about bad book reviews.

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