Yes, of course, we are all high-brow literature lovers with titles like The Brothers Karamazov and A Tale of Two Cities gracing our bookshelves. We can’t wait to hear the winner of the next Pulitzer Prize and dutifully read New York Times bestsellers. We can discuss for hours the perplexities of plot, the merits of foreshadowing, the symbolism in great novels, and the tragic characters of the classics.
Except when we don’t.
Reading is a bit like your diet. Perhaps we should all be eating healthy meals with plenty of vegetables and scant fat. And much of the time, we can keep our temptation under reasonable control and genuinely enjoy the delicious food on our plate. But now and then, forget the love handles and the bathroom scale, I want a piece of cheesecake! Or a chocolate sundae! Or a Snickers bar! We love our guilty pleasures.
For some, guilty pleasures include the romance novels bought on impulse in the grocery store line – you know, with the bare-chested muscle man embracing the curvy heroine. Or the horror novels with suspense and gore lining every page and a bloody book cover that makes the average reader recoil. Perhaps it’s the biographies of celebrities who have appeared in every tabloid newspaper with their latest scandalous event. Or an over-the-top political rant book from a hard-core advocate of whatever your political position happens to be.
I recently realized that I haven’t engaged in a guilty pleasure read for a long time. I feel that I should read the classics, expand my knowledge of young adult fiction, learn something new, get inspired, or delve into the kind of novels I want to write. But where is my guilty pleasure? Where is my literary slice of cheesecake?
What’s my adult equivalent of the comic books I read as a kid? I honestly don’t know. But I feel the need to break out of my vitamin-enriched reading diet and dive into a vat of chocolate for a change. Just this once.
So I’m wondering which not-so-good-for-me read I can pick up. Mind you, I’m not a horror or erotica gal (period) and political ranting gets old to me pretty quickly. What I really crave is a good belly laugh.
So what are your guilty pleasures? What suggestions do you have for me? Do you have some kind of books that you don’t readily announce to others that you read?