At the beginning of the year, I had set a goal for myself to read more diverse books. I didn’t want to put specifics on it for myself because as I’ve discussed before, I am very much a mood reader and I don’t like being told what to read – even by myself.
By doing that, I never felt like I had to pick up a particular book because it would tick off a box on a list of diverse aspects and I really love that. Any of the diverse books I’ve picked up this year were simply because I was genuinely interested in them – sometimes I didn’t know that books would feature characters of different sexualities or races (Shades Of Magic trilogy by VE Schwab, for example) and sometimes I knew exactly what was expecting me and I looked forward to it even more.
I feel like in the book community, certain books get really hyped up and you know exactly what you’re getting – if you’re following the community. There was recently a rather big discussion on Twitter after Hailey hadn’t mentioned in one of her videos that The Gentleman’s Guide To Vice And Virtue featured an m/m relationship and a bisexual main character.
Hailey then proceeded to post a poll to Twitter, asking her followers for their opinions on whether or not she should’ve included that information. Which sparked another big discussion that day because Hailey had asked both people of the LGBT community as well as straight people their opinion on the topic and a lot of the replies she got were about the fact that straight people shouldn’t have a say in the matter as it’s not about them.
And people of the LGBT community made some really good points about the fact that knowing a book features both an m/m relationship, as well as a bisexual main character, can be really important for someone who is actively seeking out that representation and how much it can mean to a reader to see themselves in a book.
I really took my time and read through a lot of the replies because I was curious about that myself as I wasn’t sure if I should include those aspects in my own reviews or not and I realized that I should. Someone reading my review might be looking for a book that represents them and realizing that there is a certain type of representation in a book might be the factor that pushes the reader to pick it up and they might find exactly the kind of book they’ve been looking for.
You won’t really find me talking much about representation on the blog because I don’t feel educated enough to talk about it. I don’t want to be insensitive to anyone reading our posts because I didn’t know better.
There are so many great people out there who are so much more educated and qualified to talk about the matter, that I would rather let them do it. I feel like my Twitter is a good place to follow me if you want to get more of an idea of how I feel about topics because I often retweet threads on different matters by people who are either affected by what is talked about or more educated on the topic.
But I was wondering: How do you guys approach the topic of representation on your blogs? Do you talk about it often and in great detail or do you prefer not to talk about it beyond mentioning it when it’s featured in a book you are talking about? I would love to hear your thoughts on the matter!