The internet has been filled with all sorts of author boycotts lately and I have even found myself removing books from my shelf–both physical and on Goodreads–in light of recent events. It’s definitely a weird feeling since I did really enjoy a number of those books and part of me feels immensely sad at the prospect of never reading a book like The Maze Runner ever again.
However, morally, there are just some types of author behavior that I cannnot condone, even if I did enjoy reading the worlds and characters they’ve created. My nope list of authors was pretty small prior to recent allegations and I’ve noticed it growing larger and larger in the passing days. I think this is largely in part due to the fact that I’ve started being more active on Twitter as a result of wanting to see more success with my blog. It’s really nice to finally be part of an active community of book bloggers, especially those who read YA.
But ultimately, I was just wondering, which authors are on your nope list? Who are the ones you’ve boycotted reading a book by ever again? Have you removed books you owned and previously (still, possibly) love?
I’d really like to hear about it–so, write a post and please tag me here so I can read them.
I feel that this is a discussion that will be had for a long time, and needs to be regularly had to remind new readers of the horrible things such authors have done. I’ve included my official 100% Nope list below, though I know I’ll have to go back and add a few since I don’t remember many of the names of the authors I had never read books by and I did want to hear their responses to the fact that they’d been named. As it is, I feel iffy on James Dashner and I really wish I didn’t.
The Nope List
- Jay Asher – 13 Reasons Why
There’s really no excuse for Asher’s behavior. And when confronted with the fact that his behavior was being openly discussed, his immediate response was deny, deny, deny. And admittedly this is often the response that men have because they’ve gotten away with it for so, so long. I try not to judge without all the information, but in Asher’s case it’s been had to find a lot of information aside from the comments, however it has been easier than some others. The big thing about Asher and the reason why I condemn him the most is the fact that a comment was made on the article in which he responded to the allegations that basically blew his denial away. And I just can’t in good conscience ever read a book of his again now, knowing what I know.
- James Dashner – The Maze Runner
This is the one that makes me the most sad, because at the end of the day I really enjoyed his debut series. I loved the characters, I loved the writing, I loved the stories. And it’s all been shattered apart. As it stands, I think the fact that Dashner admitted to playing a role in the disturbing sexual harassment claims is a big step forward and I appreciate the fact that he apologized. However, it sounded rehearsed–and I wonder in that case, should we blame him?–to the point that I don’t know what to think of his apology. It seems like “counseling” is the route that a lot of apologies go and while this is perhaps commendable, I’m not sure I understand how it applies. Pinning your shitty behavior on a mental illness or problem that requires counseling seems like a massive cop out. So I just don’t know.
- Sherman Alexie – The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
Ugh, Alexie makes me so mad. I’ve read a number of things about his “position” on harrassment and sexual harrassment and such and the fact that he feels he has the ability to speak out against these things while doing them is disturbing and disgusting. Now, Alexie (as far as I am aware) has not responded to the allegations and therefore leaves his entire situation in limbo. Which is frustrating because at the end of the day there needs to be culpability. And I’m afraid that in Alexie’s case, not enough of his fans knew or cared enough to make it a big enough issue to cause people to actively seek him out for comment. I feel this is unfair and there are number of other names that were put out there that I need to do some more reading on, but it’s just immensely frustrating to see a world where not everyone has to own up for their actions.
- Cassandra Clare – The Mortal Instruments
Even the plagiarism scandal was enough for me to have a massive problem with reading her books. I really enjoyed her novels. And that, I think, was heartbreaking. But there was a small comfort that I had in this where I could say, well…perhaps it’s not really her work so I can feel better about having enjoyed it. Now, I’ve still read a few of her books, but I refuse to read them in a way that puts money in her pocket. I wont buy her books. I have borrowed copies in the past. And my reason for this is that, while I enjoy the story, I know Cassandra Clare is a horrible person. And it’s not the plagiarism that makes her a horrible person, it is the bullying. I’ve read far too many accounts about this woman bullying others both prior to and after her fame. If you, as her reader, have an opinion about her books that she disagrees with, my understanding is that you must beware. The number of people she has bullied is insanely high and genuinely makes me wonder how she is still as successful as she is.
There are a few other names that are on my nope list who may or may not stay based on further information, but these four are the big ones. I didn’t own books by many of the other authors mentioned in recent days, but I did remove each and every one of their books from my to-read shelf on Goodreads. In the event that more information comes to light, I may consider redacting them from my Nope decision but that is highly dependent on the degree to which they are accused and the truth of any denial.
Additionally, my nope list also includes authors whose writing and stories I have absolutely hated or been disgusted by, but I’ll list them another time.
It’s a hard thing to have a problem with who an author is as a person, the behavior they have displayed, but still enjoy their work. Though am deeply disturbed by both Dashner and Clare, I still really like their books. And I’m not sure how to deal with that, currently. But I know there are a lot of other authors who write amazing stories who haven’t done horrible things who deserve my readership more.