There is just too much snobbery about reading. Via Kim of Reading Matters, here's a sneering post about the Amazon UK best seller list. One of those bloggers who proudly is rude about J K Rowling simultaneously with proudly proclaiming not having read her books or intending to. The sneer is purely at the expense of customers at the bookshop where the sneerer worked asking when the next Harry Potter book would be out. Sad.
There is no mileage in sneering at what people are reading. Please. I mean it. Even if the Amazon bestseller list is stuffed with celebrity "auto"biographies and annuals.
Here is another example, via a hilarious post in the form of a letter to me (The perfekk job for Maxine) by Judith Fitzgerald of Books, Inq., the [debonair] epilogue. An unbelievable snob is described at the New York Times article at the link.
It is great to read. It does not matter what anyone is reading. It beats going out and blowing people up, right? When I read today about the killing of Rhys Jones by one of a group of teenagers "stuck in a world of boredom where drug dealing is the only ambition", I think, did anyone teach those boys to read? Yes. Would I sneer at them for reading Jeremy Clarkson's "auto"biography or the DaVinci Code instead of doing what they did every day? No I would not. What is on the Amazon bestseller list is not relevant to anyone, nobody has to read those books. If people are reading them, perhaps it is more improving than that person's other options.