Thursday, November 21, 2013

Book Disclosure

Movies, television shows, and video games all have ratings and disclosure of contents. For some reason, books have no such standard. I understand it would be nearly impossible to slap a rating on each book in circulation, but why not disclose violence, language, and sexual content?

As a parent who can't keep up with all the novels my sons are reading, disclosure would be a huge help. Disclosure wouldn't just protect children, I believe it would help adults find the books they are interested in reading easier and it would help authors sell more books.  

Some authors are upset by disclosure of contents or a rating because they think they will lose readers, but I would rather have a reader know what they’re getting into. The last thing I want is someone who reads sensual romance buying my book where the characters never share more than a kiss. Such a reader would be very unhappy with me.

I picked up a book by a well-known author last summer. By page 150 I'd found my new favorite author. I mentally composed the blog post to share my wonderful discovery with the world. On page 166, there was the most violent, disgusting sex scene I have ever read in a book, complete with language that I personally detest. I threw the book at the wall and promised never to read that author again. Since then, I've heard numerous people say how wonderful the author is and that most of her books are really clean, but I haven't been able to force myself to read her again. If there had been some indicator when I bought the book, I would have chosen one of her other, cleaner novels, and she would have gained a new fan.

There is never going to be a law enforcing publishers to rate their books, but companies like Amazon are very forward-thinking. If enough people e-mailed them through their contact me button, they would probably add a section of disclosure or author rating.

Please share any ideas or thoughts you have.

Thank you,


  1. I agree! It would be nice if we had more to go on than just reviews from other readers whom we don't know. Thanks for your two cents' worth.


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