Swagbucks Book Club – 50 Shades of Phenomena
Welcome to the Swagbucks Book Club.
A big thank you to everyone who voted last week to help choose our next group selection. The top three vote-getters were The Lottery by Shirley Jackson, A Good Man is Hard to Find by Flannery O’Connor and The Body by Stephen King. The Lottery & Other Short Stories by Shirley Jackson is available in Kindle version in the Swag Store. We will be discussing these three short stories on Friday August 31st. I hope you can join us then.
Today’s topic is a tricky one. Because we are a Book Club it would be negligent to ignore this summer’s publishing marvel – 50 Shades of Grey by E.L. James. The trilogy has spent over 20 weeks on the top of the New York Times Best Seller list and just this week became the most downloaded e-Book ever. What began as a work of Twilight fan fiction has sold more than 20 million copies in the last four months alone and spurred several cultural debates. These books have been blamed for everything from the deterioration of feminism to a baby boom. The one thing that nobody is arguing is that these are no literary masterpieces. But does everything have to be? Should there be shame, self-inflicted or not, of reading something for the pure enjoyment. Is this book the equivalent of the Snickers bar smuggled into the house and eaten in secret? What’s wrong with wanting empty calories once in awhile.
The 50 Shades trilogy has shed some light on the fan fiction genre. Of course fan fiction itself is not without controversy as many believe it is less about flattery and more about intellectual theft. What are your thoughts on fan fiction? Are you familiar with the genre? Do you write or read fan fiction? Is the success of this series a testament to the positives or negatives of fan fiction?
For today’s discussion I want to hear your thoughts on this cultural phenomenon but please keep it clean, after all, my mother reads this blog. On Monday I will hook up 10 participating users with 25 Swag Bucks each.