I checked in at the Booking Through Thursday blog, which is the host for a weekly book meme or blogging prompt. Here is this week’s prompt:
Movies have a rating system to help guide the consumer weed out adult/violent/inappropriate kinds of films. Video games do, too. Do you think BOOKS should have a ratings system?
It depends on who is implementing the ratings and what categories they are labeling. readers usually have a good idea of the book judging from the genre given on the back cover: General fiction, literary fiction, romance, historical fiction, etc. Sex, violence, and obscene language don’t bother me as long as they are natural discourse of the story. If a book’s focus is sex, then the label “romance” is more than suffice for me to steer clear it. It really boils down to who gets to decide what types of scenes would get a warning and which wouldn’t. I doubt people could agree on them. Most gay fiction (not even erotica) in Hong Kong and other Asian countries are sealed in shrink-wrap with a warning of explicit material. Whereas, Fifty Shades of Grey has no such warning. Also if violence is to be censored, then almost the entire genre of thriller would have to be sealed in wrap. It’s difficult to reach a consensus on what is to be warned and censored.