Q – When is an email trying to sell me sexy underwear actually something else entirely?
A – When it’s from a publisher, wanting me to admire their latest book covers.
Is it so very wrong of me to feel there should be more of a difference between the sales emails I get once a week, flogging Björn Borg knickers, and something from a reputable publisher, hoping I’ll review their shades of grey books for the young?
I especially don’t want the covers to be followed by information on how I can buy the books. I expect them to post them to me for free, after which I will look at them (no, not like that!) and then quickly put them away, never to be seen again.
It’s totally OK for the industry to publish YA versions of sexy books, now that we know readers will go crazy over this kind of thing. (To be honest, I don’t see why people of YA age shouldn’t read the adult books.) But it’s hardly review material.
Did Mills & Boon send out review copies? I don’t see the point. Readers know they like the stuff and it’s cheap, so they buy it, or borrow it off friends.
If I was the author of normal, good quality novels for young readers I would sit down and cry. In fact, I suspect they are already doing that. The next step will be them looking up the guide lines for sexy books for children, silencing their conscience with alcohol, as they sell their souls.
I’m sure most of us have read cheap thrills in some form or other. Most of us grew out of it at some point, too. When we did read it, we weren’t exactly checking out reviews in the media. We just knew. If a reputable reviewer praised a book like that, I’d not have wanted to read it.
So why should we want to review sexy books for young readers? Their parents aren’t suddenly going to sit up and think ‘OMG, I’ll definitely get that for Jade’s birthday!’ Are they?