Things I Can Live Without in Books

I read. I like reading. Things annoy me sometimes in books. Here are some of them.

1. September 11th. 9/11. Twin Towers. You know what? I’ve read The Falling Man, Dead Air, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, Yellow Dog and now A Tale for the Time Being. I do not need another description of the footage of the Twin Towers falling. Yes, we are in a post 9/11 world now, and yes it stands to reason that some characters in novels will have been affected by it, but you are turning a terrible event into a dull trope.

2. Oh So Self Aware Books about Geeks Mr Penumbra’s 24 Hour Bookstore contains several hundred pages with references to Google, the main characters visit Google and use Google and scan things in to computers with Google’s big scanner, but it’s all okay because the main character is a lovable loser who still kind of gets the girl and OH AREN’T BOOKS AND BOOKSHOPS LOVELY AND QUIRKY WHEN THEY’RE BEING MANAGED BY A DOTTY OLD MAN. See also Ready Player One.

3. Almost all sex scenes. Updike gets a pass, maybe not for Couples though.

4. Brand names In The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, which I still maintain is one of the worst written (or translated perhaps) books I have ever read, one of the characters describes his laptop, including all of the specs, and all of the software, including how much it costs, and then includes AN ACTUAL LINK IN THE TEXT FOR YOU TO BUY THE THING. As a result I sold all of my computers (only kidding, they were all stolen).


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