On my drive to work I was listening to the radio. The dj's played a game, would you rather read a page of 50 shades of grey, or get a texted picture of some random dude's penis. I was horrified that they'd even come up with such a contest, and terrified when the overwhelming response was most women would rather receive a picture of some guys schlong.
Now, very few people are going to come out and say hey, I really enjoyed the book, because they feel they will be ridiculed, but why is it so terrible to read that and OK to read US magazine or star magazine. At least 50 shades of grey has a narrative that extends over more than two pages.
It's part of the romance/erotica shaming that is so prevalent right now. I have children and in between Tv, Ipads, computers and the countless other distractions in a day, I'm having trouble getting them to want to read. I want them to discover the joy in getting lost in an awesome book, and following a narrative across multiple pages and discovering how sentences should be formed. (I'll save my rant on the non-word "Ain't" for another day) and to be honest, past the age of sixteen, I don't care what they want to read, as long as it's longer than eighty pages.
For me, romance was my gateway drug into serious reading, one book a week type reading and from romance I expanded into Urban Fantasy, Thrillers, literary and YA. I have a friend who is an English Teacher and I'm way better read, because she won't let herself read genre books and feels she can only read literary, and the got bored with reading, because reading in only one genre can be so limiting. So she doesn't read anything but magazines and would never, ever pick up a romance.
Enough of the shaming. Someone who reads a book -any book - should be celebrated. They had the interest and intelligence to follow a narrative past two pages, and it truly shouldn't matter what that book is. And maybe the next time someone compares a page of text to a picture of a schlong, there will be a mass protest and whatever idiot came up with that idea will be shamed.