Sunday, April 08, 2012


There's a great article in the Awl that interviews a bunch of folks in the book-industry: 
What Books Make You Cringe To Remember?  As you might expect, there's a lot of Ayn Rand on the list.  I have to say, that's what I would put on my list too - I LOVED The Fountainhead when I was a teenager.  I might also put Flowers in the Attic on the list...  

Quite a few people mentioned On the Road by Kerouac - that was a bit surprising to me.  However ridiculous and misogynist the Beats might have been, they exemplify this pretty interesting part of American history.   Someone mentioned Sweet Valley High!  Now, how could you regret Jessica and Elizabeth?

But, even though they make me cringe a little, I don't regret reading them.  I think the books we read help us become who we are.  

Maureen Corrigan from NPR says it well:

I've been wracking my brain, but honestly it's hard to suggest any without feeling disloyal. In fact, at the risk of sounding sentimental—oh, what the hell, I'll be sentimental—to dis those embarrassing young adult faves now feels like snickering at the friends I had in high school and college whom I've "outgrown." I loved them and needed them at the time and, for that, I'll always be grateful to them.
Anybody have some cringe-worthy books they'd like to share?  

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