Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Book Swearing

I am an opinionated person. This is a blog. With opinions. And swearing.
If you don't want that, you may want to find another post.


Something that's plagued me for a while:

Swearing in books.

I understand it may not be for everyone, but I recently stumbled onto a blog that put down books like Eleanor & Park, We Were Liars, The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August (which I'm reading now and it's extremely good), Gone Girl, and a bunch more that I won't list because it made me extremely upset to see how many good books were on this list.
And the reason this person put down all these books?

This person said they were sad to not "be able" to finish the books because they were good and the person was enjoying them, but they couldn't stand the swearing in them.


You are perfectly "able" to finish them. You're electing not to. If you're going to make decisions, don't blame it on the author/book. It's your choice.

Is this a thing that bothers people? Maybe I just never realized it?

But moving on, it doesn't seem like a thing that should be a reason (the only reason) to put a book down. They are just words made of letters that we all use. You're not hearing them out loud, you're not saying them. No one is requiring you to like it. But individuals that are not you use these words in every day language (*raises hand*), and you can't make them stop using them.

After all, isn't the point of writing to be able to express oneself without reservation? To tell a story about a character who may or may not swear, but that character should be free to do so no matter what? Because it's their decision, and it's the author's decision to let them?

This just seems like a crazy reason to put down a book to me, and I was so frustrated that so many good and thought-provoking and wonderful books and writers were on this list.

And that's the fucking truth.


  1. I agree with you, but that's probably because I curse all the time ;) the words don't bother me at all.

  2. It does bother some people. No biggie if it doesn't bother you, but I'm one of the readers/bloggers who quits a book because of language. I'm not irritated at the author--no harm, no foul. I do stop reading, though, because it bugs me, and sometimes I'm bummed out that it's a book I was enjoying. I think the difference between the way you're thinking about it and the way I do is when you say, "You're not hearing them out loud, you're not saying them." That's true, but I am "hearing" them in my head. I don't want them there. That's just me. :)


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