Cover-Judging! And Why I’m Not Sorry For My Superficiality | Becca’s Bookish Discussion

  

  • Covers often represent their genre. If I’m in the mood for fantasy as I wander into my local nefarious bookshop, I will likely pick up a book with castles or dragons on the cover rather than one with two fatuous teenagers sitting on a fence as they watch the sunset. This saves a busy bee like me from going and reading the summary of every book in the store.
  • Covers are their own bookish art form. Someone actually put a lot of time and energy into creating covers to appease shallow readers everywhere. All the glorious creativity in a book cover should be acknowledged! 
  • Publishers should not be lazy twats. Excuse me! Don’t settle for terrible cover art because it’s too hard to find someone to design it better. And certainly don’t give me that well they shouldn’t judge a book by its cover anyway nonsense. I demand perfection! (Calm down. That was a joke.)
  • Because I’m superficial and I like pretty things. Yeah, I want a book that will like nice on my shelves. You call it superficiality, I call it appreciation of the arts! (Okay, yes, it’s a little superficial)  
  • Sometimes covers misrepresent the book. Maybe this amazing fantasy book looks more like a Nicholas Sparks novel on the outside but I’d never know its true inner beauty because I’m a superficial vermin.
  • It’s what’s on the inside that counts! So what if a book cover is horrendous? (Inner artist claws off skin) So what if it misrepresents the book? The words inside are what matter.
  • I’m waaaay too picky to cover judge. There are, like, four covers I consider worthy of my shelf. I can’t help it, really. A queen must have noble tastes.  

  
Cover judge/appreciate-the-art-form away—but with caution. 

Or do whatever. I don’t own your life.

Are you a cover-judger? Are you ashamed of this label or do you proudly wear it?

          The Problem with Relatability and Books | Becca’s Bookish Discussion

            
          Great! There’s absolutely nothing wrong with liking a book even more because it’s relatable. I understand for the need to want to read something that understands you, that makes you feel normal. However, liking a book solely because it’s relatable, this is a problem for me, and it’s not the only one pertaining to relatability and books.

            
          This is what really gets me. I can understand liking a book more because it’s relatable, even liking solely because of that is forgivable. But there’s a line many reviewers use and it’s something I can’t stand: It wasn’t relatable enough for me.

          I can understand, sometimes we want a book to makes us feel understood. But books, books. They’re meant to open our eyes to another’s perspective, they’re meant to show us different points of views, they’re meant to splurge our minds in different worlds. Why would you ever undermine that by saying books aren’t relatable enough for you? Books—movies, tv shows, any stories—have this incredible, beautiful purpose and power and it physically hurts me when people bash it with their want for relatability.

            
          A little bit of both. They’re good in the way that they help us feed our selfish want to be understood, and for that purpose they’re great! We all need that sometimes. Unfortunately they’re of no help in expanding our view of the world, in broadening our perspective. They’re bad when relatability is the only thing a reader pays attention to. They’re very bad when a reviewer uses it to undermine books.

          With this discussion, I ask you: Please, please keep an open mind as a reader and/or a reviewer. Don’t bash a book because it isn’t relatable. Let yourself see the world through another’s eyes.