Miscellaneous

Miscellaneous

The Twitter Book Community is Toxic

I’ve been waiting for quite a while to write this post, because I know its going to ruffle feathers. But at this point, I really don’t care. I’m going to write this post and I’m going to say it – the Twitter book community is toxic. I know, I know, you don’t think so. But honestly, it is.

I get you (and you know who you are if you’ve every done this) might want to call out an author for “problematic” behavior. However, you need to understand that what you find problematic is not necessarily considered problematic to someone else. They may not see anything wrong with it. However, I’ve noted that in many cases, when an author is “called out” they aren’t truly called out. Calling them out would mean that you @ mention them on the social media platform and inform them of what they’ve done wrong and why it is wrong. But that’s not what you do.

No, what you do is you do something like S***h J M**s so that people can’t find the author’s name in search results. Then you proceed to whine and complain about what you find problematic. And you get people to jump on board… especially since people are too afraid to lose you as a follower if they don’t fall in line and start complaining about the author. (Sarah J Maas is amazing and I used her as an example because she’s one of the authors I’ve seen this happen to.)

Then you do things like say “It’s OK to read (insert author here) as long as you acknowledge the problems with his/her writing/behavior.” It is never OK to say something like that. That, right there, is what will keep people from reading. Why? Because they’re terrified they’ll “read the wrong author” and get shunned or told off. Believe me, I’ve been told off for saying I like the Harry Potter series because J.K. Rowling has been labeled as anti-LGBT and anti-Semitic. I’ve been told that I’m not allowed to enjoy the books I enjoy because the authors are “problematic.” I’m tired of it. I’m tired of getting on Twitter Newsflash: There is not a single person on this planet who isn’t problematic in some way. No one is perfect.

Another things I have a problem within the book community is people saying things like “You can’t say you are well read if all the authors you read are white.” I’m sorry, I don’t go looking for the author’s skin color before I start reading a book to make sure they aren’t white. I don’t care what color their skin is. If the book is interesting to me, I will read it. If it isn’t, I won’t. Simple as that. The author’s skin color, sexual preference, disability (if any), or gender has zero bearing on whether or not I’m willing to read the book. The book itself determines that. And honestly, if choosing a book to read means I have to take into consideration a whole list of things regarding the author, I don’t want to read anymore.

This behavior on Twitter in the book community is toxic. You don’t have the right to tell people what to do or how to feel/think about an author or book(s). You have no right to “call out” someone unless you @ mention them and actually make an attempt to educate them about what they are doing wrong. If they argue or won’t listen, fine. You can block them, stop reading their books, and never mention them again if you want. But please, try to not tell others that they shouldn’t read the author/book(s). Try not to be that person who is keeping someone from reading because they might offend someone with their choice of author/book(s).

I’ve had to flat out leave the book community on Twitter because I can no longer tolerate the way people act there. I have a new Twitter (that I will not be linking). I follow 2 or 3 book bloggers and that is it. I’ll probably follow some authors, but I think the book bloggers I’m currently following will be the only ones. Unless the attitude of the book community changes and people start understanding that while they have a right to their opinion, they don’t have a right to tweet things that sound like a command – example: “You can read Sarah J Maas as long as you acknowledge how problematic her books are.” That’s not cool and for someone who is just getting started reading and discussing the books they read, it’s entirely possible you may put them off reading for good because they’re terrified to anger the people on Twitter.

Miscellaneous

#BlackLivesMatter

I haven’t posted any reviews for a few days and I’ve taken a break from social media. (I don’t consider blogging to be social media if it’s your blog is your entire website.) Part of the reason for this is the #BlackLivesMatter movement. Social media sites are beginning to suppress the #BlackLivesMatter hashtag – I know that in the past day or two before I took a break, I saw a significant drop in the number of posts with the tag.

That being said, while I don’t have a huge platform here, I want to do my part to push this movement forward.

Books You Can/Should Read

  • They Can’t Kill Us Until They Kill Us by Hanif Aburraqib
  • Americanah by Chimimanda Ngozi Adichie
  • The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander
  • I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
  • The Black Flamingo by Dean Atta
  • I am Not Your Negro by James Baldwin
  • Notes of a Native Son by James Baldwin
  • Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates
  • Eloquent Rage by Brittney Cooper
  • White Fragility by Robin Deangelo
  • Not So Pure and Simple by Lamar Giles
  • Fill Disclosure by Cameron Garrett
  • Black Leopard, Red Wolf by Marlon James
  • The Fifth Season by N. K. Jemisin
  • All Boys Aren’t Blue by George M. Johnson
  • An American Marriage by Tayari Jones
  • Silver Sparrow by Tayari Jones
  • How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi
  • Stamped by Jason Reynolds & Ibram X. Kendi
  • Heavy: An American Memoir by Kiese Layman
  • To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  • Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race by Reni Eddo Lodge
  • Sister Outsider by Audre Lorde
  • I Tried to Change So You Don’t Have To by Loni Love
  • The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
  • So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo
  • Riot Baby by Tochi Onyebuchi
  • Anger is a Gift by Mark Oshiro
  • Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid
  • All American Boys by Jason Reynolds & Brendan Kiely
  • The Boyfriend Project by Farrah Rochon
  • Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson
  • The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
  • Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward
  • The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead
  • Native Son by Richard Wright

The above list was found on Instagram and now I can’t find the account it was originally posted to. If you know who originally posted the list, please let me know so I can credit them with compiling the list.

The books are *not* linked because I do not wish to profit from this list through affiliate links. Please, look for black-owned bookstores in your area to make your purchases from – don’t give more money to Amazon or Barnes & Noble unless you absolutely have to.

Where to Find Petitions/Charities to Donate To

If you would like to find petitions to sign and organizations to donate to, please visit https://blacklivesmatters.carrd.co

NOTE: The above website says that if you have multiple email addresses, you can sign petitions more than once. I do not suggest doing so – it is possible that IP addresses are collected to ensure duplicate signatures aren’t obtained. Duplicate signatures have the potential to negate the petition, so sign more than once at your own risk. I can’t tell you not to do it, I can only advise you of the possibility.

Miscellaneous

How to Get Books While in Quarantine

If you’re anything like me, your local, state, or federal governments have issued shelter-in-place or stay-at-home orders. While for some of us this seems to be a dream come true, it really stinks for some of us. A lot of people love to go out and do things, but right now, that’s not an option.

If you’re a bookworm, now you have to figure out how to get new books to read. There are a few ways you can do this.

Audiobooks

If you’re interested in audiobooks, you can choose one of the following:

Audible

Audible allows you to get audiobooks via credits. You pay $14.95/month for one credit for a book, but you can always buy other audiobooks, you’ll just pay per book you buy.

Scribd

If you subscribe to Scribd Premium for $9.99/month, you can find audiobooks to tide you over. They’ve got a ton and the catalog keeps changing, so you can find something to listen to.

Libby

If you have a library card, you could see if you have Libby. You can get audiobooks through your library on the Libby app, if your library has purchased the audiobooks.

eBooks

Scribd

Another thing you can use Scribd for is eBooks. Like the audiobooks, you’ll need a Scribd Premium subscription, and the catalog is always changing. However, they have a ton of books you can read.

Libby

Again, if your library uses the Libby app, you can get eBooks to read via the library even when the library is closed.

Kindle Unlimited

You can subscribe to Kindle Unlimited, which lets you read books for a flat fee each month.

NetGalley

If you’re not adverse to reading books that aren’t released yet or are uncorrected proofs, you can try using NetGalley to get eBooks to read.

Apple Books/Nook

Books and Nook have the option to make purchases in the app, allowing you to take advantage of deals. They also have a small selection of books that are free.

Kindle

You can often find books for free or for really cheap for Kindle, but you’ll have to go through your browser to purchase them, as the Kindle app and Amazon apps aren’t set up to allow Kindle purchases.

I hope this list of places you can get books during this time of being stuck at home is helpful!

Miscellaneous

My NetGalley is Out of Control

There, I’ve said it. My NetGalley is out of control. I have over 100 books (113 last I checked) to read and review. I need an intervention…

I think a big part of the problem is that they don’t limit how many books you can have pending review at any given time. Or if they do, I’ve never hit that limit. I’m beginning to think they need one. LOL

Another problem I have is that a few publishers have me on auto-approve. So if I see a book that looks good, I snag it. It isn’t that I plan to get the books and then not read them. In some cases, I forget I’ve got the books or I get busy and don’t manage to read the books. Usually it’s that I forget completely about the NetGalley books.

So I’ve decided to set a new goal. Except for books that are for my book clubs – Barnes & Noble YA Book Club and I’m now part of a book club on Instagram, I’m going to start reading my NetGalley books. They’re pretty much all chilling out in my Kindle app, so there’s no real reason to keep ignoring them. I’m not going to go by oldest to newest or anything, I’m just going to pick a book and start reading it.

Right now, I’m reading Belle Révolte, which I got back in November from NetGalley. I *will* have to read The Hazel Wood before I read The Night Country though, otherwise I just won’t get what’s going on. LOL

Am I the only one with an out of control NetGalley TBR? Let me know in the comments. 🙂

Miscellaneous

December TBR

So November was kind of a bust when it came to reading. This month, I’m hoping to get more reading done than in November. Most of the books I’m planning to read this month are either for book clubs, blog tours, or just to get my NetGalley/Edelweiss TBRs down.

I’m too lazy to grab pics of the covers today, so…

Scythe by Neal Shusterman – I need to read this for YA Book Club at Barnes & Noble.
Jupiter’s Fire by William Osborne – Blog Tour
The Slayings in Syndenham by Alice Castle – Blog Tour
Wild Sky by Lexi Rees – Blog Tour
Die Every Day by Gordon Bickerstaff – Blog Tour
Belle Revolté by Linsey Miller – NetGalley
The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert – Prep for The Night Country
The Night Country by Melissa Albert – NetGalley
Legacy of Night by C. D. Travenor – NetGalley
Safeguard by John A. Daly – NetGalley

I’m going to keep it to those books and hope that I manage to get all of them read. I’ve already started Scythe, Jupiter’s Fire, and Belle Revolté. I’m working on The Hazel Wood in preparation for The Night Country.

I’m going to try to start reading at least 4 NetGalley books per month and not requesting new books no matter how much I want to until my feedback ratio is 80% and my TBR pile for NetGalley is way lower than it currently is. This means I’m going to be reading and reviewing some seriously old books, but it will be worth it to fix my ratio.

What’s on your December TBR list?