She appears to be rambling about the books picked for this year's Booker awards list. She points out early in the article that there is nothing wrong with an enjoyable read that doesn't "tax the mind". But that that doesn't make it literature. Instead, she says that there is a simple test, "Does this writer's capacity for language expand my capacity to think and to feel?"
And while that is a wonderful little test, I do not think that it is justifiable for what is and what isn't literature. Why? Well, I've read tons of novels that do this. In fact, almost every novel I've read recently has at least several words I have to go look up in the dictionary. But just because a novel has a mass of huge and unknown words that doesn't make it literature.
I understand what she's saying here (after rereading several times because it didn't make sense at first), that we shouldn't apologize if books are harder for the person reading it and make the book easier.
The thing that struck me about this article was the thought that are books getting too easy to read? I said before that I don't think so, but while books need to be challenging, they should also be easy to understand. Writers don't "dum down" their stories, we choose every word for a reason and hopefully, none of us will use a word that we don't know it's meaning and use it because we think it'll make us look smart. But we also might not use as many big and challenging words because, lets face it, not many people have a large vocabulary.
The best thing for the Booker prize would be to outline its aims – is it about literature or is it a division of easyBook? Should we include first novels? I think not.The thing that bugged me about this part was the fact that this writer doesn't think that the awards should go to first novels. While I agree that most of the time our first novels won't be the greatest, but just because it's our first novel doesn't make it bad. Harper Lee's To Kill A Mockingbird, was her first and only novel. And today it's considered a classic and a great book. I've read it and enjoyed it. And guess what, it's her first novel.
Anyways, you can read the whole article, here, and see what you think. And so, what do you think about this?