Silly Reader, Sci-Fi is for Kids

I have a dear friend, a lady. She is dating a swell guy who also blogs — and he does a bang-up job of it. My dear friend had, I recall, a proviso set out at the start of their relationship: Her guy had to be cool with sci-fi. She’s totally geeked on the stuff and if he wasn’t down with that, then he was down and out. Geeks are defensive of their literature. Maybe it is because it gets consigned to a special place in the bookstore where your type (read: geek) will find the poorly-made paperbacks that satiated a perverse predilection.

To be fair, there are plenty of other genres that get pigeonholed in stores and libraries. Think Westerns, Romances, and Mysteries. But only sci-fi (and to a lesser degree its cousin Fantasy) seem stuck in there almost for good. Consider that the Western Canon is awash in books we could say are pure genre pieces. Think Cormac McCarthy for Westerns or Paul Auster for mystery. Hell, most of 19th century lit could be dubbed straight romance. But how many sci-fi books get honored that were not plugged by the two genre awards, Hugo and Nebula?

The reason I mention this is that before I started reading William Gibson’s Neuromancer, I had to go find it. Two local bookstores struck out, so I hit up the library. Where was this book that is considered to be a classic of literature and a watershed book of the genre? In the Young Adult section. Sorry kid, out of the way, I’m not interested in The Monster at the End of This Book. I am looking for very serious literature! Now where’s my beanbag chair?

One Response to “Silly Reader, Sci-Fi is for Kids”
  1. lawnwrangler says:

    I get the same reaction with “graphic novels.”

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