"" Writer's Wanderings: Books For The Road - A Rating System For Books?

Monday, September 09, 2013

Books For The Road - A Rating System For Books?

I read. A lot. By the end of this year I will probably have read well over 50 books. My goal is always a book a week. Sometimes I make it. Sometimes I don't. A lot depends upon the length of the books and the amount of travel time I have to fill on planes and in
airports where a lot of my reading gets done. If I were to count the books that I start and don't finish, the list would probably be much longer and I will have met my goal for the year by the end of summer. Why start and not finish? Because there are some books that just set my teeth on edge with their language, violence, graphic descriptions, and sex scenes which often don't have anything to lend to the story but sensationalism.

Movies have helped viewers to choose what they want to see with their ratings of G, PG, PG13, and R. X is not on the table for discussion. Not only do they have the general rating but now they explain briefly why the movie earned the rating so you can choose to put up with bad language or sexual innuendo or references to drugs. It surely helps.

Books are a whole different ballgame though. While the online stores allow you to take a peek inside and the brick and mortar stores allow for browsing, there is not a good way to tell what you might discover midway through or in one case, as I discovered, almost to the end. I was reading what was a good mystery and all of a sudden the author decided that some graphic sex scenes were needed. They had nothing to do with the mystery or even the characters' relationships. I ended up returning the borrowed ebook to the library thankful that I hadn't spent money on it.

What do you think? Should books have a rating system to help us choose what to read? Would it be effective? Or would it be considered censorship?

How do you choose your books for the road?

1 comment:

Mean Puppies Inc. said...

I have thought the same thing when I discovered a book had content I thought was too much - it also made me feel self-conscious at the library because I wonder if the librarians knew what the book was about!

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