Why not Join Amazon Kindle Unlimited 30-Day Free Trial?

Author Topic: So...about the banned book thing  (Read 14882 times)  

Offline MyraScott

  • Status: Scheherazade
  • *****
  • Posts: 1482
  • Gender: Female
  • Ideas are worth nothing until implemented
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #100 on: August 10, 2017, 07:41:59 AM »
The whole thing was brilliant marketing.

She's made a name for herself, become the poster child for "banned books" and gotten a lot of people who would never condone or read this type of book to buy her book "for solidarity."

The emotional "banned" word is being screamed throughout social media... but the government isn't telling you that you can't read it.  Retailers declining to sell it (as an ebook- you can still get the paperback!  Hurry and buy it quick!) is not "banning." 

If everyone started a social media crapstorm over their books that were delisted from Kindle, there'd be nothing else in your feeds.  Authors who write "taboo" know they are not guaranteed to be published.  She has been extremely successful with this launch.

Brilliant and lucrative.

Offline Usedtoposthere

  • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
  • *******
  • Posts: 5480
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #101 on: August 10, 2017, 08:07:06 AM »
Age of consent in Alaska is 16, so it's not statutory rape. That came up in another discussion that pointed out the age of consent isn't 18 everywhere.
The idea that you can have "consensual" sex with your child, or that that child being adopted somehow makes it not pedophilia and incest, boggles my mind. That these ideas are being put forward by women disgusts me. The father first fingers the daughter's genitals at age 10. AGE TEN. What happens afterwards, the "romantic" relationship, the "special closeness"--that has a name too. It's called "grooming."

There can be no "consent" between a minor child and her father. By that token, how about a priest who first fingers a boy's genitals at age 10, and progresses to having sex with him at age 16? They're not related, right? And the boy thinks it's romantic! The priest has told him they have a special bond, and don't tell or the priest will get in trouble, and he loves the boy. How about reading that? I know I'd swoon in romantic ecstasy.

The fact that the father rapes his daughter WHILE SHE IS IN LABOR with his child, and she's calling him "Daddy" while he does it--let's hear you excuse that.

By defending this by saying it's "consensual," as if victims of incest can consent (that's why these laws exist--the vastly unequal power relationship), or that the child not being his biologically makes it fine--you are saying that child sexual abuse is fine. Do you somehow not realize that? I can tell you that this conduct would be prosecuted as criminal anywhere in the United States. The fact that the man is not her biological father does not make a whit of difference. Most girls' molesters are their stepfathers or mom's boyfriend. Trust me--it's still considered child abuse. 

For anybody who's reading this discussion and thinking like me that they've entered some Twilight Zone--the discussion here doesn't reflect what I'm seeing elsewhere. One thing that's happened for myself and many other bestselling authors, in romance and otherwise, throughout this fiasco--we've been able to see who we never want to work with again.

Oh, and for the "but Lolita" people--Lolita wasn't billed as or written as a romance. It was written as the state of mind of a sick man. And yes, romance books in the 1970s and 1980s frequently had the "romance" begin with a rape. That's why lots of us can't read them now. The rest of you all sound like the worst of rape apologists. Congratulations.

I'm going back to work now. In my books, the rapist, the abuser is the bad guy. I'll never, ever understand books where he's the hero, or why any woman, especially a mother, would read or write it. This author says the book was about the "family finding closeness" because it can be "lonely" in the wilderness. I wonder if she'll say that (or you will) if her husband rapes their child. I pray none of your children ever have to feel the lifelong scars from Mommy's boyfriend (or their father) wanting to be "romantic" with them, because they're so "special."

You want to read sick stuff by authors who push the envelope into darker and darker territory? Go ahead and read sick stuff. But don't try to pretend the behavior would actually be OK and defend it. Doing that demeans and abuses real victims all over again.

I'm so disgusted and disappointed in so many authors and readers. One thing's come out of this, though--I'm getting a much clearer idea of why so many mothers pick the abuser over their own daughters (which they do all the time). I never could understand that mindset, but now I'm getting it.
« Last Edit: August 10, 2017, 08:40:48 AM by Usedtoposthere »

Offline Nic

  • Status: Arthur C Clarke
  • *****
  • Posts: 2682
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #102 on: August 10, 2017, 08:35:14 AM »
The idea that you can have "consensual" sex with your child, or that that child being adopted somehow makes it not pedophilia and incest, boggles my mind. That these ideas are being put forward by women disgusts me. The father first fingers the daughter's genitals at age 10. AGE TEN. What happens afterwards, the "romantic" relationship, the "special closeness"--that has a name too. It's called "grooming."....

It's been rare before, but in this instance I fully agree with everything you say.

Offline Shelley K

  • Status: Scheherazade
  • *****
  • Posts: 1834
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #103 on: August 10, 2017, 08:47:07 AM »
I remember getting into an internet discussion a few years back about whether freely available porn influenced the sexual habits of teenagers that watched it. I was of the opinion, and still am, that a lot of our young people are getting their sex ed from the porn videos that they find all over the internet. Young guys see a women getting choked and they think this is the way it's done. They see unprotected anal sex and think, "wow, I want to do that." They see guys pull over and pick up some "stranger" on the side of the road and go have wild sex with her and they think there are millions of women just like that in the world.

I had one woman, at least I think it was a woman, light into me and tell me that porn videos do NOT influence the sexual behavior of teens. Then she proceeded to tell me she was a psych major in college and she knew what she was talking about. I think she's an idiot and if that's the kind of thing they're teaching in college nowadays, this country is seriously circling the drain.

Porn videos and movies aren't supposed to be teaching tools. If they become that, if parents don't make sure their kids are educated about safe sex and all a child's education about it comes from Mona Does the Mailman, of course there's going to be an influence. This discussion isn't about viewable pornography and neglectful parents/educators, however, so I stand by my points.


The fact that the father rapes his daughter WHILE SHE IS IN LABOR with his child, and she's calling him "Daddy" while he does it--let's hear you excuse that.

That's gross. But nobody here is excusing the acts depicted.

Quote
The rest of you all sound like the worst of rape apologists.

It's words on a page. Nobody was raped.
« Last Edit: August 10, 2017, 08:50:23 AM by Shelley K »

Offline Huldra

  • Status: Jane Austen
  • ***
  • Posts: 369
  • Gender: Female
  • United Kingdom
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #104 on: August 10, 2017, 08:47:58 AM »
It's... it's fiction?
Where are all the people up in arms whenever someone publishes a horrifically detailed thriller?

For the life of me I cannot understand why people, and authors especially, get so riled up about a work of fiction, just because it contains subject matters they find vile.

Fiction = not real = reading/writing it is not the same as condoning these things in real life.

Offline Usedtoposthere

  • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
  • *******
  • Posts: 5480
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #105 on: August 10, 2017, 08:48:13 AM »
Porn videos and movies aren't supposed to be teaching tools. If they become that, if parents don't make sure their kids are educated about safe sex and all a child's education about it comes from Mona Does the Mailman, of course there's going to be an influence. This discussion isn't about viewable pornography and neglectful parents/educators, however, so I stand by my points.

That's gross. But nobody here is excusing the acts depicted.

Guess what, nobody was raped.
Rape doesn't have to be by physical force. A minor child is unable to consent to sex with her father. Look it up.

Offline Usedtoposthere

  • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
  • *******
  • Posts: 5480
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #106 on: August 10, 2017, 08:49:21 AM »
It's... it's fiction?
Where are all the people up in arms whenever someone publishes a horrifically detailed thriller?

For the life of me I cannot understand why people, and authors especially, get so riled up about a work of fiction, just because it contains subject matters they find vile.

Fiction = not real = reading/writing it is not the same as condoning these things in real life.
Except that most people here are doing exactly that. "But she wasn't biologically his child!" "But she was 16 when they actually had sex!" "But it was romantic and she wanted it!"

That's rape apology. It's called "minimizing."

People aren't supposed to be getting off on the horrific details in a thriller. They're written to shock, yes, but you're not supposed to be rooting for the bad guys to peel the person's skin back or whatever. This book wasn't written like Lolita, as an exploration of something terrible. It was written as a romantic tale of two souls destined to be together.
« Last Edit: August 10, 2017, 12:05:53 PM by Usedtoposthere »

Offline Nic

  • Status: Arthur C Clarke
  • *****
  • Posts: 2682
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #107 on: August 10, 2017, 08:50:51 AM »
Fiction = not real = reading/writing it is not the same as condoning these things in real life.

Fiction isn't without effect, even if it is "just fiction".

Offline Usedtoposthere

  • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
  • *******
  • Posts: 5480
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #108 on: August 10, 2017, 08:55:30 AM »
Fiction isn't without effect, even if it is "just fiction".
This. Hence all the attempted shuffling and excusing of the father's behavior in this book. Take a look at the Stanford rape victim. "What were you wearing?" "How much were you drinking?" The idea that a woman "asks for it" is still pervasive and deadly. The idea that a young girl was being "seductive" and the man was "drawn in"? I just saw that a year or so ago when a narrator of mine, a man in his forties, was arrested, sentenced, and jailed, for sexual conduct with a child. You should have heard his banner author and her followers go after the girl online (she was 15 or 16). She must have been seductive. Girls that age can look 25. It went on and on.

So yes, this is an attitude that seeps into real life all the time. The same things I've heard here are exactly the same things real rape victims face every single day in this country.

Offline Huldra

  • Status: Jane Austen
  • ***
  • Posts: 369
  • Gender: Female
  • United Kingdom
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #109 on: August 10, 2017, 08:57:41 AM »
Except that most people here are doing exactly that. "But she wasn't biologically his child!" "But she was 16 when they actually had sex!" "But it was romantic and she wanted it!"

That's rape apology.

People aren't supposed to be getting off on the horrific details in a thriller. They're written to shock, yes, but you're not supposed to be rooting for the bad guys to peel the person's skin back or whatever. This book wasn't written like Lolita, as an exploration of something terrible. It was written as a romantic tale of two souls destined to be together.

It doesn't really matter if it's written to get people off or not. Thrillers are written to elicit a non-erotic response, sure. But they're still meant to thrill. They still sell copies based on how horrific they're described. Their authors are earning money off describing human misery and sick, sick acts. I don't see the difference.
(#NotAllThrillers)

Fiction isn't without effect, even if it is "just fiction".
That's usually the point of (good) fiction. To have an effect on the reader. It doesn't mean that reader condones the behaviors they read about IRL. They're reading for an emotional experience not tied to their everyday life.
« Last Edit: August 10, 2017, 09:01:37 AM by Huldra »

Offline Shelley K

  • Status: Scheherazade
  • *****
  • Posts: 1834
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #110 on: August 10, 2017, 08:58:25 AM »
Rape doesn't have to be by physical force. A minor child is unable to consent to sex with her father. Look it up.

Don't need to. The characters in that book don't exist, therefore nobody was raped. And I am fully aware exactly what rape is, thanks.

Thrillers are called that for a reason. Stalking, plotting, murders, violence all used as entertainment. Often the murder of children (James Patterson) and often horrific kidnapping, confinement and rapes (James Patterson). I'm sorry, but if we're going to thought police what people make up and limit the outrage to things that women write to turn other women on, it's an incredible hypocrisy.

I think the things I'm told are depicted in that book are super gross and sketchy. *shrug* So I simply won't read it. Easy enough.
« Last Edit: August 10, 2017, 09:05:43 AM by Shelley K »

Offline Usedtoposthere

  • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
  • *******
  • Posts: 5480
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #111 on: August 10, 2017, 09:05:36 AM »
Don't need to. The characters in that book don't exist, therefore nobody was raped.
 


I am discussing the excuses put forward in this thread by authors about why and how the romance between a father and a daughter in this book is OK because ... blood relation. Girl's age at first intercourse. She wanted it. It was romantic.

I am aware that it's fiction. I'm talking about the attitudes and opinions expressed about the actual behavior.

As far as the "controversy" itself--every retailer has limits on what it'll sell. The author knew those limits and crossed them. Her marketing plan was built around "Get it before it's banned!" She's done the same thing in the past. Then she set up a hue and cry about "banned books." The book isn't banned. It's just not being sold on stores whose TOS it violates.

Freedom of speech means the government can't tell you that you can't write a book. It doesn't mean anybody has to sell the book. I'm constantly astonished at the misunderstanding of the First Amendment. "Censorship' applies to the government. Amazon doesn't "censor," and neither does your local bookstore. They choose what they want to carry.
« Last Edit: August 10, 2017, 09:11:58 AM by Usedtoposthere »

Offline Shelley K

  • Status: Scheherazade
  • *****
  • Posts: 1834
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #112 on: August 10, 2017, 09:08:02 AM »
I am discussing the excuses put forward in this thread by authors about why and how the romance between a father and a daughter in this book is OK because ... blood relation. Girl's age at first intercourse. She wanted it. It was romantic.

I am aware that it's fiction. I'm talking about the attitudes and opinions expressed about the actual behavior.

Yeah, but this discussion is based on acts that didn't really happen. People do view things differently in fiction than in real life, so I don't think you should make judgments about people based on their defense of a book. If we were discussing this book as a news story that we read about, I genuinely believe horror would be the theme and we'd all want the guy behind bars.

Offline Huldra

  • Status: Jane Austen
  • ***
  • Posts: 369
  • Gender: Female
  • United Kingdom
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #113 on: August 10, 2017, 09:08:29 AM »
I don't think anyone explicitly says what happens in that book is OK. They're just putting some facts straight about the plot of the book AND saying it's okay to write about these things. Again, because fiction.

Offline Usedtoposthere

  • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
  • *******
  • Posts: 5480
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #114 on: August 10, 2017, 09:15:19 AM »
Yeah, but this discussion is based on acts that didn't really happen. People do view things differently in fiction than in real life, so I don't think you should make judgments about people based on their defense of a book. If we were discussing this book as a news story that we read about, I genuinely believe horror would be the theme and we'd all want the guy behind bars.
To repeat myself:

The idea that a young girl was being "seductive" and the man was "drawn in"? I just saw that a year or so ago when a narrator of mine, a man in his forties, was arrested, sentenced, and jailed for sexual conduct with a child. You should have heard his banner author and her followers go after the girl online (she was 15 or 16). She must have been seductive. Girls that age can look 25. It went on and on.

Offline sela

  • Status: Scheherazade
  • *****
  • Posts: 1402
  • Gender: Female
  • Planet Earth is blue and there's nothing I can do.
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #115 on: August 10, 2017, 09:33:39 AM »
To repeat myself:

The idea that a young girl was being "seductive" and the man was "drawn in"? I just saw that a year or so ago when a narrator of mine, a man in his forties, was arrested, sentenced, and jailed for sexual conduct with a child. You should have heard his banner author and her followers go after the girl online (she was 15 or 16). She must have been seductive. Girls that age can look 25. It went on and on.

I personally find the content of the book vile, disgusting, and a reflection of unequal power dynamics between men and women and how they have affected sexuality in modern femininity.

HOWEVER, they are words on pages and I highly doubt that any of the women reading the book actually think it would be a great thing to have happen to their daughters or themselves in real life.

People read all kinds of stuff because we have this capacity called imagination and imagining terrible things and even being excited by them is part of what makes us human.

Why do we like ripper movies that depict decapitation and murder? We love to be scared. Yet, none of us would be anything BUT horrified and disgusted if there was a decapitation murderer in our midst.

Why do we love to watch films like San Andreas where thousands of people die in seconds due to tsunamis and huge earthquakes? Do we really want those things to happen? No! If we met someone who survived the Japan Tsunami but lost their families, we wouldn't think it was a great thing.

We have these minds that make fantasies out of our fears and disgusts and desires. We shouldn't want anyone policing our minds. Except ourselves.

So, I personally loved watching World War Z where zombies killed millions of people in horrible ways. I think it's a great book. I love books like that. That DOES NOT MEAN I condone the horrific deaths of millions of innocent people by zombies.

I don't personally get off on stories like [this one], but I also don't want anyone telling me I can't. BECAUSE THEY ARE STORIES. FICTION.

Nor do I want people to force retailers to sell anything they don't want to sell.

Luckily, the only thing I can be told is that it might be hard for me to find that kind of book if that's my thing as a reader. And, if I'm an author, that I may not be able to publish that kind of book on Amazon or iBooks or Barnes & Noble.



Edited to remove book's title. - Becca
« Last Edit: August 10, 2017, 10:22:32 AM by Becca Mills »

Offline Nic

  • Status: Arthur C Clarke
  • *****
  • Posts: 2682
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #116 on: August 10, 2017, 09:36:31 AM »
People do view things differently in fiction than in real life, so I don't think you should make judgments about people based on their defense of a book.

People don't view things so differently in fiction than in real life. That's the reason why fiction can influence how people think in real life.  I'd like to point out that I'm not in favour of banning books. However, I also am always astounded by people believing that fiction doesn't influence people directly.

I would like to see more responsibility in authors. I believe one reason why so many were shocked by this book is the complete lack of a proper content warning, and the flippancy of the warning there was.



Edited. Drop me a PM if you have any questions. - Becca
« Last Edit: August 10, 2017, 10:42:54 AM by Becca Mills »

Offline Usedtoposthere

  • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
  • *******
  • Posts: 5480
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #117 on: August 10, 2017, 09:46:21 AM »
I'm not talking about the fact that readers can distinguish between reality and fiction. I'm talking about the excuses made for the content by writers in this thread. I'm not sure how to say that more clearly. These attitudes are also pervasive in society. Well, of course they are. That's why writers in this thread are espousing them. That's what is disgusting me.

Offline AssanaBanana

  • Status: Jane Austen
  • ***
  • Posts: 265
  • Gender: Female
  • Los Angeles
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #118 on: August 10, 2017, 09:54:12 AM »
The father first fingers the daughter's genitals at age 10. AGE TEN. What happens afterwards, the "romantic" relationship, the "special closeness"--that has a name too. It's called "grooming."

The fact that the father rapes his daughter WHILE SHE IS IN LABOR with his child, and she's calling him "Daddy" while he does it--let's hear you excuse that.

While I agree with your outrage in general, you've got the details wrong about this book. The girl is 16 (which we've established already is the age of consent in AK, regardless of anyone's definition of "consent") when he first touches her, and he thinks he's touching her mother when it happens. The sex while in labor was perhaps dubious consent, but if you read the scene it's kind of iffy (and he doesn't know she's in labor at the time). There's totally a "love/hate" thing going on in the moment in her head.

I'm not condoning that type of activity, but this is FICTION and the event was a suitable inciting incident for the continuing sexual relationship between the pair. Most readers of this book GET that it's fiction. And sure, it's perhaps irresponsible of a writer to suggest this type of activity is okay because there are outliers who don't know the difference, but those creeps are going to get aroused by the MOST innocuous things regardless.

I had a "fan" who wrote me a letter once telling me how much he loved a particular book of mine. I thought his particular choice of words was odd, and he had a very unusual name (I wasn't sure whether he was a "he" based on this name) so I looked him up. Turned out he was a repeat sex offender serving time in Texas for paedophilia. The book that he loved so much happened to have a very innocent prologue featuring a five-year-old girl playing hide and seek with her stepdad. I can't help but think that the reason he loved my book so much was because of THAT scene more than any of the more explicit sex scenes later in the book (that featured the girl as a 20-something adult).

But I'm NOT going to adjust my writing to avoid potentially salacious material for people like him. I write books to turn on my readers, and my readers are by and large a particular demographic who knows better. I've even opened up a discussion in my fan group about the book and everyone in there who's read the book agrees - they loved it but they are suitably squicked out by the age difference. But they get that it's not a true story so we can accept the book and enjoy it on its fictional merits and based on general standards of craft, it's actually a decent book.
« Last Edit: August 10, 2017, 09:56:16 AM by AssanaBanana »

Offline Shelley K

  • Status: Scheherazade
  • *****
  • Posts: 1834
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #119 on: August 10, 2017, 09:59:33 AM »
I still think people see fiction and real life differently. For instance, dubious consent in fiction--she doesn't want it (but secretly does) and is resistant but all into it by the end. In real life, that's rape. There is no dubious consent in real life, but it's a mainstay in romance fiction, always has been, and probably always will be (unless we lose to the thought police). There isn't anyone I know who doesn't understand the difference between a book containing dubious consent, and how in real life that would be unacceptable. Do I just have particularly enlightened and intelligent friends and family? I suppose that's possible. :) But it seems more likely to me that people, unless they have problems, fully understand the difference between fiction and reality.

Someone could and probably will point out that in real life rape victims are often blamed for their own attacks and use fictional dubious consent as an example of why that happens. But compare the treatment of rape victims historically to those today and look at the improvements. We still have a long way to go, but it's better than it used to be. Dubious consent in fiction has never stopped, and in fact I suspect more people read it today than ever before, because more people can read and there are more books available. Yet we are more aware than ever of rape culture and consent. If people thought everything in fiction was fine, that wouldn't be so.

I guess it boils down to the fact that I don't have the time or energy to be outraged by what people say about things that never happened when there are real-life things to be outraged by instead. And I think, and will always think, free speech trumps it all. I'm fine with the retailers removing the book. What Sela said pretty much sums up how I feel. "I don't personally get off on stories like ____, but I also don't want anyone telling me I can't. BECAUSE THEY ARE STORIES. FICTION.

Nor do I want people to force retailers to sell anything they don't want to sell."

But I'll defend people's right to write or read it.



Edited to removed quotation. Drop me a PM if you have any questions. - Becca
« Last Edit: August 10, 2017, 10:46:44 AM by Becca Mills »

Offline Usedtoposthere

  • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
  • *******
  • Posts: 5480
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #120 on: August 10, 2017, 10:06:56 AM »
Because this keeps coming up: the age of the perpetrator and the relationship establish the criminality.

In Alaska, sexual abuse of a minor in the first degree is defined as, among other things: if the offender is 18 or older, the victim is under 18, and the offender is the vidtim's natural parent, stepparent, adopted parent, or legal guardian. Consent is immaterial due to the offender being in a position of authority.

So no, it isn't ok because she's 16. And the fact that you all think so, that you wouldn't understand that a father can't legally have sex with his 16 year old daughter, just boggles my mind. Seriously?
« Last Edit: August 10, 2017, 10:09:14 AM by Usedtoposthere »

Offline Huldra

  • Status: Jane Austen
  • ***
  • Posts: 369
  • Gender: Female
  • United Kingdom
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #121 on: August 10, 2017, 10:18:46 AM »
Because this keeps coming up: the age of the perpetrator and the relationship establish the criminality.

In Alaska, sexual abuse of a minor in the first degree is defined as, among other things: if the offender is 18 or older, the victim is under 18, and the offender is the vidtim's natural parent, stepparent, adopted parent, or legal guardian. Consent is immaterial due to the offender being in a position of authority.

So no, it isn't ok because she's 16. And the fact that you all think so, that you wouldn't understand that a father can't legally have sex with his 16 year old daughter, just boggles my mind. Seriously?

I think it boggles your mind because no one has actually said that.

Offline EB

  • Status: Arthur C Clarke
  • *****
  • Posts: 2314
  • Gender: Female
  • used to care
    • View Profile
    • E.B.'s website
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #122 on: August 10, 2017, 10:19:14 AM »
The idea that you can have "consensual" sex with your child, or that that child being adopted somehow makes it not pedophilia and incest, boggles my mind. That these ideas are being put forward by women disgusts me. The father first fingers the daughter's genitals at age 10. AGE TEN. What happens afterwards, the "romantic" relationship, the "special closeness"--that has a name too. It's called "grooming."

There can be no "consent" between a minor child and her father. By that token, how about a priest who first fingers a boy's genitals at age 10, and progresses to having sex with him at age 16? They're not related, right? And the boy thinks it's romantic! The priest has told him they have a special bond, and don't tell or the priest will get in trouble, and he loves the boy. How about reading that? I know I'd swoon in romantic ecstasy.

The fact that the father rapes his daughter WHILE SHE IS IN LABOR with his child, and she's calling him "Daddy" while he does it--let's hear you excuse that.

By defending this by saying it's "consensual," as if victims of incest can consent (that's why these laws exist--the vastly unequal power relationship), or that the child not being his biologically makes it fine--you are saying that child sexual abuse is fine. Do you somehow not realize that? I can tell you that this conduct would be prosecuted as criminal anywhere in the United States. The fact that the man is not her biological father does not make a whit of difference. Most girls' molesters are their stepfathers or mom's boyfriend. Trust me--it's still considered child abuse. 

For anybody who's reading this discussion and thinking like me that they've entered some Twilight Zone--the discussion here doesn't reflect what I'm seeing elsewhere. One thing that's happened for myself and many other bestselling authors, in romance and otherwise, throughout this fiasco--we've been able to see who we never want to work with again.

Oh, and for the "but Lolita" people--Lolita wasn't billed as or written as a romance. It was written as the state of mind of a sick man. And yes, romance books in the 1970s and 1980s frequently had the "romance" begin with a rape. That's why lots of us can't read them now. The rest of you all sound like the worst of rape apologists. Congratulations.

I'm going back to work now. In my books, the rapist, the abuser is the bad guy. I'll never, ever understand books where he's the hero, or why any woman, especially a mother, would read or write it. This author says the book was about the "family finding closeness" because it can be "lonely" in the wilderness. I wonder if she'll say that (or you will) if her husband rapes their child. I pray none of your children ever have to feel the lifelong scars from Mommy's boyfriend (or their father) wanting to be "romantic" with them, because they're so "special."

You want to read sick stuff by authors who push the envelope into darker and darker territory? Go ahead and read sick stuff. But don't try to pretend the behavior would actually be OK and defend it. Doing that demeans and abuses real victims all over again.

I'm so disgusted and disappointed in so many authors and readers. One thing's come out of this, though--I'm getting a much clearer idea of why so many mothers pick the abuser over their own daughters (which they do all the time). I never could understand that mindset, but now I'm getting it.

I didn't intend to imply that anything in Lolita or those 80's rape-romances was okay, or that I think any of the content of the book in question is okay. I read the entire book, and it is exactly what many have said: graphic rape, child sexual assault, and it depicts completely illegal and immoral acts for the sole purpose of titillation. I do not understand how readers could classify the clear episodes of grooming, rape, and abuse as something consensual or romantic.
 
My personal opinion of the content is one thing; the topic itself brought up at lot of questions for me. How much is too much in fiction? Why is it illegal to distribute child porn, but it's okay to graphically depict it in a book and distribute it? Would I want my teenage daughter to read this book and somehow think that anything it contained was normal, acceptable, legal, or permissible? Was I messed up by reading all those Stephen King and Kathleen Woodwiss novels when I was too young to understand the meaning of consent? Is writing a bloody, graphic murder scene any different ethically than writing a child rape scene? Why aren't people screaming from the rooftops over Jamie and Cersei? Why isn't Woody Allen in jail? How these same topics are covered in the industry, other genres, related ethical/legal issues, and how those implications shape our job as authors are all things that are on my mind.

I've been around here long enough to know that you are someone I admire and respect, and I hope you might know enough about me to know I don't condone any of the content of the book in question. If I've offended you, I apologize, as that was not my intent. Yes, reading the book sickened me. I've read a lot of books that sickened me, some of them award winning books and classics. And yes, it is quite shocking to read reviews of those defending the content of that particular book, and I can't comprehend how the content is defensible. I think many authors are having a hard time balancing their personal disgust of the content vs the desire to support an author's right to write it. 

Do I condone, agree with, or support the content in any way? Absolutely not.
Do I find it entertaining, romantic, or beautiful? Absolutely not.
Do I wish authors would not write stories that graphically depict child abuse, sexual assault, and pedophilia as a love story intended to sexually gratify the reader? Absolutely.
Do I want to restrict a the rights of authors to write what they choose? Absolutely NOT. 




Edited.  PM me if you have any questions.  --Betsy/KB Mod

Offline Usedtoposthere

  • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
  • *******
  • Posts: 5480
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #123 on: August 10, 2017, 10:27:42 AM »
I'm not talking about laws. I'm not talking about freedom of speech. People can read and write whatever they like. I reserve the right to be disgusted, but disgust isn't law. Amazon can refuse to sell the book, but that isn't law either.

And yes, many people throughout this thread have said it isn't rape because it was consensual and she's 16. Over and over. The "age of consent is 16" is right here on this page, and on every page before it.

Offline Huldra

  • Status: Jane Austen
  • ***
  • Posts: 369
  • Gender: Female
  • United Kingdom
    • View Profile
Re: So...about the banned book thing
« Reply #124 on: August 10, 2017, 10:31:38 AM »
So no, it isn't ok because she's 16. And the fact that you all think so, that you wouldn't understand that a father can't legally have sex with his 16 year old daughter, just boggles my mind. Seriously

People have pointed out that she was 16. And that yeah, it's statutory rape but it's consensual statutory rape. NO ONE has said that that makes the content completely okay, nor that they would condone it in the real world. They've just corrected misinformation. It's not the same as thinking fathers shagging their teenage daughters IRL is a-okay. It's really, really not.

Buy Scrivener for Windows or Mac