Can great literature really change your life?

Stop beating yourself over not reading the “right” books. Fiction is about two things: curiosity and pleasure, says Malcolm Jones in The Daily Beast

Ernest-Hemingway-007I am a bad reader. I don’t mean that I don’t know how to read or that I don’t understand what I have read. And I’m about average when it comes to speed (no, I’ve never taken an Evelyn Woods course, but I once took their test and that’s what it said: I was smack in the middle of the pack).

No, by bad reader, I mean someone who doesn’t finish books he doesn’t like, rereads old favorites at the expense of discovering something new, doesn’t worry about being broadminded, and prefers detective stories to Hemingway or Mary McCarthy.

I mean someone who’d just as soon watch a movie or listen to music as read a book. I mean someone who’d just as soon watch television.

If readers had to be licensed, my license would have been revoked long ago.

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