I imagine most people reading this are aware of #HaleNo and the decision of some book bloggers (especially in YA and romance) not to run reviews of new books for a short period of time. (If not, here’s Sunita’s post on it, with links to more). Since reviews of new books are pretty much non-existent on my blog, my participation isn’t very meaningful, but this post is my expression of solidarity with their action.
I’m horrified by the incident and the way Ms. Hale has been supported by some people eager to cast amateur reviewers/bloggers as bullies and trolls, but I’m deeply grateful to bloggers for the way they have responded. Some blogger have decided, during the blackout, to focus on what brought them to blogging in the first place: a love of books and reading and a desire to discuss them with others. I’ve enjoyed Dear Author‘s posts on topics like who’s in your book-recommending trust circle, favorite book-to-film adaptations, and authors you miss, for instance.
Perhaps my favorite post has been Miss Bates’s, because so much of what she says expresses my reasons for and attitudes to blogging, too:
primarily, Miss Bates reads romance, she doesn’t review romance. She hopes to inspire fellow-readers to share in her thoughts about romance fiction. . . . She wants her blog to be an account of what she’s reading and how she responded to it and less about whether you, her reader, should, or shouldn’t read a book. She wants to, once again, engage with her reading emotionally and intellectually without worrying about spoilers and ratings and release dates.
My disaffection with bookish social media has made me want to refocus on reflecting on individual books as well. I’m tired of kerfuffles. Continue reading