January’s a month of bad weather, of staying at home, of snuggling up. My favorite thing to do in the midst of all of that is to curl up with a book (and a baby or toddler or both, if they’ll let me). This month, while I don’t want to give up my reading and the enjoyment that comes from that, I do want to focus on the many books we have here. They’re stacked and shoved and piled onto the shelves in our living room, and it’s high time I went through them. The other day, I was thinking about how fun it will be to share so many of the treasures on those shelves with my kids when they’re older. And then, unbidden, the night I woke up screaming while reading Salem’s Lot came to mind. I pictured that nearly-complete Stephen King collection I have, and I asked myself if I want my children to read those.
No, I don’t. (Well, there might be a few; I’m going to reread the ones I’m thinking of and see if they are any good.)
It’s not that I don’t want them to find their own favorite author and work through his or her works. It’s not that I won’t read Stephen King with them. It’s that I don’t want to have it here, in my house, easy pickins for young minds.
I’m not sure all the time I read King’s work made me a better person. I’m not sure it’s wholesome, and I’m also not sure anymore if it was good writing. There was a lot of it, but was it good?
There are some other odds and ends on those shelves too: books I’ll never touch again and books I don’t really want to read to see if they’re any good. This month, I’m going to sort through their covers and make piles or fill boxes and get ‘em outta here.