Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Let's Talk About... Boy Books and Girl Books

There's been a lot of discussion recently about "boy books" and "girl books". Most of us, me included, don't like books being labelled as for boys or for girls. Books are books and shouldn't be relegated to only being enjoyed by one gender.

I know there are boys that like books that may be labeled "girly" and girls that like books that are "boyish". Just because I'm a girl doesn't mean I can't enjoy an action story or relate to a male narrator. I think, for whatever reason, boys fear the stigma that comes with being seen as less "manly" and that reading a book that may seem girly makes them look girlish. I think girls have a similar experience, though to a lesser extent. A girl who reads science fiction is generally perceived as either "weird" or a guy's girl. It just depends on who is making the judgement, so she never knows where she stands with people.  But what people think of you for reading a certain book doesn't matter!

Obviously, there are books that boys aren't generally going to like and books that girls aren't generally going to like. Just because it's the norm doesn't mean it's the rule, though. I know I read whatever piques my interest; it doesn't matter what it is or who it may be targeted towards.

I'm really not trying to go into anything deeper other than that we should look at books past their cover value. Read what interests you because it interests you. Don't worry about what other people think of you for reading. Only worry about what you get out of it. Reading is a personal experience and you're responsible for what you put into your mind, so enjoy yourself!

Other posts on this topic:
Maureen Johnson for Huffington Post Books: The Gender Coverup
Renae @ Respiring Thoughts: "Boy Books" and "Girl Books"--What About "Book Books"?
Marie Lu for Huffington Post Books: Writing a Book for Boys

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