Good morning! Today’s Top 5 post is brought to you by Sir Betrothed as this was a subject they were quite keen on me doing. Admittedly, I had to give this one some thought as I didn’t believe there were books that I genuinely wished I had never ever read. Yet, as I began to sift through books I have read within the past three to fives years, I quickly understood that this was not the case at all!
All of the books that I will be briefly chatting about today were titles that I felt were quite horrid for many reasons. Now, if I am sharing a book that you actually enjoyed quite a bit, then that is really good for you and my distaste for them is in no way a judgement on you as a person or a reader. We simply have different tastes in books, which is totally dandy!
Alrighty, time to bitch and bemoan.
5. Korea’s Place in the Sun: A Modern History by Bruce Cumings
Oh my, where do I even fucking begin? I had to read this as a textbook for my History of Korea course, and it was quite literally one of the most appalling historical texts that I have ever had the displeasure of reading in my life. You can read my full rant for it here, but to keep this short and simple all I’ll say is this: the book is supposed to offer us a presentation of Korea’s history. There are supposed to be facts and accounts of what helped shape the nation of Korea into what it is today. I will admit that Cumings does a somewhat decent job of offering his audience the facts with great detail, even if his interpretation is terribly incorrect (which only occurs quite a few times in the entire 500 some odd pages). But the way that he talks about other nations with such spiteful beguilement, makes me sick to my stomach, specifically sections where he openly and joyfully brags about offending the Japanese people while interviewing them about points in history. Are you fucking kidding me?
4. Japan—Culture Smart! By Paul Norbury
This is a book that I read earlier this year when I checked out my very first stack of library books, almost all of which pertained to Japanese history and culture. Holy shit, y’all. This guy is a huge asshole. This was written by someone who has no respect for a non-Western nation’s culture or community. I found it to be highly disrespectful and a poor source of information for Japan. He was so damn condescending with so many aspects of Japanese culture and etiquette. You could clearly tell it was written by someone who is ignorant and racist.
3. Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James
Ah… the epitome of offensive bullshit that utilises harmful stereotypes for the purposes of pumping out mediocre pornographic novels. This book and its portrayal of the BDSM community pissed me the fuck off. As a member of said BDSM community, I can honestly and openly say that we do not believe in rapey fucking sexual conduct. Consent and RESPECT OF YOUR PARTNER are very fucking essential when enjoying specific kinks and fetishes. I hate that people read this book and felt like they had insight into the mind of folks like us who enjoy the darker sides of sex. The series does nothing but romanticise and sexualise harmful, abusive relationships, and misogynistic, anti-feminist ideals. The BDSM community is not about that shit at all. AT ALL.
2. The Geisha with the Green Eyes by India Millar
I have bitched about this piece of shit so often on my blog that it shouldn’t surprise long-time readers to see this on my list. Good grief, you want to talk about the sexualisation of a whole race of people, not to mention the practise of taking severely inappropriate and harmful creative liberties with a country’s history and culture—this book is it. Oh, and I recently found out that there’s a whole goddamn series of these things. *bangs head against the wall* This book is one of the main reasons that I refuse to read books about Asian people, culture, history, etc. written by non-Asian authors.
1. Tea with Hezbollah by Ted Dekker
I originally read this because I was asked to by someone close to me to give it a shot, but it ended up being one of the most ridiculous fucking things that I have ever read. It is the epitome of what is wrong with close-minded people who claim that they want to understand different faiths/cultures, but what they actually seek is a means of ripping those cultures to shreds; to show how “inferior” those cultures are in comparison; to supplicate their own ignorance and hateful beliefs. In this case, it’s the comparison of Islamic views in the Middle-East versus Dekker’s Christian ideals, which he didn’t even properly explore as he was too terrified of being in the ME to write a coherent book about it. It blew my mind because his trip there was essentially the equivalent of a millionaire’s lavish vacation, no joke. I am engaged to a Christian Pastor (woot Sir Betrothed), so I hold no ill will or disrespect for Christian people, and we have discussed this book rather intimately, and we both agree on how and why this book is an offensive and racist piece of crap. You can check out my full review for it here. By far, out of everything that I have read in my life (including the goddamned The Geisha with the Green Eyes) this is the worst fucking thing I have ever read. I say this as someone who was born, raised, and still applies a bit of Islamic practises to their daily lives.
Alrighty… so those are the books I hated and wished I had never read. I know that at least one of them is going to be a scandalous or touchy novel for some of you. As I’ve mentioned before, just because I hate something doesn’t mean I’m going to hate you or judge you for liking it. We are all entitled to our own opinions and items of pleasure. I feel we are all adult enough to agree to have differences in the things we love.
Thank you so much for visiting me today. I appreciate the support! Until next time, keep reading and keep otakuing. 💜
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