I have read Fifty Shades of Grey. All three of them. And I enjoyed them. Was the writing good? Nope. Was the plot wonderful and creative? Nope. Were the characters complex and interesting? Not at all. And yet, for the few hours I read each one, I was entertained. And, to me, that’s one of the reasons I read. I also read to learn, to understand others better, to see the world differently, to get lost somewhere magical and strange. And I feel guilty about none of it.
Constantly as a book blogger, avid reader and social media director for a book review website I see people shaming what others read. Nicholas Sparks’ fans get the hate. Shades of Grey fans get mocked. Twilight fans, too. I read all of Stephanie Meyer’s books. I didn’t love them all. (I actually threw New Moon across the room. I don’t ever throw books, because they have feelings, too. But I just couldn’t with Bella anymore.)
I won’t mock or judge people based on what they read. I may become concerned if you call Shades of Grey great literature (and will probably plead with you to read Little Women or To Kill A Mockingbird or something.) But, really, who I am to judge anyone for anything they like? Love what you love, without regret or remorse or embarrassment. I still like manga, and I don’t mind saying it.
Don’t feel guilty about that steamy romance read, that 300-page thriller or the young adult book read way past your days of high school and homework. Reading is for everyone, no matter their interests.