Every time I pick up a book to read, coffee or a glass of red wine in hand, I get excited about what's gonna happen. I'm wanting romance, some intense action, throw in a little sci-fi and I'm good. Don't bother me. I even have a bad habit agreeing to things my children ask for, just to make them go away. Boy, do I pay for that later.
My intention was just to let Andye handle the blog while I just read and wrote book reviews. Well, I can't just sit around and stay quiet after reading 'Betwixt'. It was rough. I had just read three chapters and noted seventeen f*** words. I was appalled. I'm not saying I don't expect some books to sound like a Quentin Tarantino movie, and sometimes I might enjoy that, but not when I get it out of the teen section of the library.
Before Andye had the brilliant idea to start a book review for the concerned parent, I would have just let my teenage daughter read a book that she had chosen from the teen section at the library with no problem. My ignorance told me that there is reason that the book was in that section at the library, it must be okay. Minor language, minor violence, some kissing and caressing, it all looked harmless enough.
I trust my children, that when they read a book, that they will make the right decision about whether to continue or not based on it's content. Or should I? Maybe then it will be to late. One line could do it. Boom, innocence lost forever. Or, am I going overboard? Well, no longer will I put my children's innocence on the line for my lack of concern for what they are reading. No longer will I assume that the author or librarian has my child's interest at heart. Some of the - your child needs to experience everything because their going through puberty - authors of this world have no remorse when it comes to filling our children's head with garbage. Whether it's sex, drugs or even a political point of view, that you may or may not agree with. The author will, intentionally or unintentionally, mold our children to become like every other child in America. That is not what I want. Why even write a book if not to try and encourage your readers to see, think and even believe the way you do. My problem is that the authors who are guilty of crossing the line, are gearing very adult topics toward our teens and think not only it's okay, they know that they could get away with just about anything. Who is going to stop them? Is it art? The right to express yourself?
After reading a few chapters of 'Betwixt', of course the language was just ridiculous and the teens could only think about sex, their drug dealer and the next keg party. The contents of this book really made me angry. Very angry. If I found it in the adult section, I would have been fine, maybe even given it a chance. Any of my children could have walked in the library, chosen this fantasy out of the teen section with the big butterfly on the front, thinking it looks like a fun read. The sweet, elderly librarian would help them check out the book, not a care in the world. I feel like running and screaming through the library to annoy the staff, that would be my initial reaction. Then I think who's to blame? Is it the one who selects the books that go into our library? The authors? Maybe, even the publicist? The ultimate responsibility lies with us, the parents. Who in the heck has time to read all these books before our children can enjoy them? Not me, I have five. With different taste.
I am not understanding why. If we can put a parental advisory tag on music, a board that puts ratings on the movies we watch, and get serious about the games our kids play, than why can we not put something on the books we read? I personally do not want to get rid of any books or burn them as some crazy activist group would do. Every book has it's place in the library or at the book store. This is America, and if someone wants to read a book that will rot your brain or an evil ( sell your soul to the devil) book, than that's their business. I would like to make it priority, that someone takes this issue very serious. We need ratings, parental advisory tags for the teen/children's books. The author's need some kind of accountability, so that when they fill our children's heads with their ideas, they have to answer to someone for the line that they cross.
For the full review click here