The Balancing Act: Literary Edition

Apparently Mother Nature is always trying to balance herself out. That’s the tip I got from my Weather Wisdom column the other day. Seems to make sense; a week of rain is followed by a week of sun and fun. Unless it’s winter in the northeast and a week of snow is followed by a week of even more snow.

This seems to be true in all walks of life: you inhale a dozen cupcakes, then you lay off the ice cream for the night week. You see that you’re going through the Blue Moons faster than the vodka, so you switch to mixed drinks to ration the beer (your alcohol collection should be a impressive balance of all the staples).

Such is life.

Literature is no different. For every well-written, notable book or series, there seems to be a comparable fail. Take Harry Potter and Twilight. JK Rowling created pop culture icons and an entire world of magic; Stephenie what’s-her-face sent the feminist movement back 30 years. All while writing at a fifth-grade level. I guess for a grown woman, that is kind of remarkable.

The Hunger Games was able to loosen the death grip Twilight had over America, and for that, I love it even more. Besides the fact that it’s a provocative series with a bad-ass female protagonist and the ability to make readers actually think. A dystopian novel that appeals to adults and children AND provides a female lead that girls of all ages can look up to? Suzanne Collins for president, 2016!

Unfortunately, the amazingness of the Hunger Games has primed the literary world for a catastrophic failure in order to regain its balance. And we’ve found it with Fifty Shades of Grey.

I don’t even know where to begin. I understand that it was started as fan fiction from Twilight, correct? Which would explain the mousy, unremarkable female lead who every guy falls in love with (because that’s how it works in the real world). And the smoldering male lead who has enormous wealth and is very, um, well equipped, if ya know what I mean (hint: I’m not referring to the extravagant cars). And the fact that the female and male know each other for no significant amount of time and yet are somehow so in love that said female can’t even function when they break it off for a little bit in the beginning of the second book (New Moon, anyone? Sorry, that was Fifty Shades Darker. Oh wait – it was both).

I know, I know – no one is forcing me to read this garbage. I just can’t NOT be up on the latest craze in pop culture. For instance, season one of Jersey Shore I was legit interested in. It looked like an extension of True Life: I’m a Jersey Shore Girl, one of my fave True Life's (True Life: I'm Addicted to Trashy Television).

By season three, I was only watching b/c I knew other people were watching. And I couldn’t be out of the loop when my coworker asked me if Sammi and Ronnie were still together (even though there isn’t ever a direct answer to this question).

This incessant need to be up on the latest trend is something I was hoping to grow out of. Look where it’s gotten me: counting down the pages in Fifty Shades Freed before Ana kills Christian and eats him so she always has him with her. I read a spoiler and that’s the shocking twist at the end. And to be honest, I was pretty glad to hear at least one of them dies.


xo kelsey said…
A-freaking-MEN! 50 Shades is terrible. I can't get over how it's seriously the adult version of Twilight. I'm no feminist, but I can't believe that people, especially grown women, are wishing they could have Ana's love life. EW. She literally can't function without her man. That has to be a disorder! And the awkward, shy, clumsy girl that apparently never gets attention has EVERY hot guy drooling over her? Oh okay. I admit I lovvvved the Twilight series back in high school, but now I'm embarrassed. I read the first 50 shades book, but I was way too bored by the writing to read the other two. Seriously, the sex scenes bored me after the first half of the book. I mean Christian makes eye contact with Ana & it makes her lose control in her pants? He must be a superhero.
brigidmc12 said…
Soooo glad you agree w/ me! Bella/Ana is the most pathetic character and the Edward/Christian's of the world are in no way interested. And the writing is terrible.

Phew, I thought I was the only one who hated them, haha.
Michele said…
I'm lmao. This is great. Sarah told me to run to my computer and find this entry (I cant believe I missed it in my reader!).

Where's that damn LOVE button... ;)
brigidmc12 said…
haha, I love that you love it!

Have you read them yet? Do yourself a favor....don't.