Bookish Junk Food

This week has been a weird reading week. I started taking a MasterClass on writing children’s books, and part of the class means reading tons of books by the professor. These books, for me, don’t feel like they “count,” to my weekly reading goals, as they are short, middle grade, and take less than an hour to read. So I picked up something I consider to be junk food.

I’m not going to talk specifically about this book right now, as I want to keep that short review for my wrap up, but this book was a romance novel with a bright blue and purple cover, and followed a “will they, won’t they” story line. I don’t consider all romance/women’s fiction to be junk food, as there are some science fiction, superhero, and general books that are junky, but what do I mean by junk?

Junk food books are the sort of forgettable, lack of substance books that don’t stay with you. They are hostess cupcakes, twinkies, and chips.

The book I just read was consumable. I could read all the books written by this author in a week and not remember the plot of any of them. They are a binge of grocery brand preservative filled cakes, caloric-ally dense and not memorable.

So why read junk? Why not read the nutritional books that you learn and grow from as a reader? Why not read the books that are dense and heavy and rich? The hollaindaise and chocolate cake of books?

Sometimes, after a long miserable week, you need junk food. You need to pop a frozen pizza in the oven, turn on the tv, and eat the whole thing with no remorse. Sometimes, you need to read those books that allow you to relax and enjoy. That you don’t have to think much about, but can enjoy just the same.

So often, I have to think hard about books. They make me feel harder and longer than anything in my life. And the heavy, dense books can be exhausting. Sometimes, you need a break with something light.

I want to know how you determine what to read? Do you stick with the heavy, or do you find yourself indulging in a bit of junk food once in a while? Let me know your thoughts in the comments.



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