I used to be the blogger called YAL Book Briefs, but I grew bored of the handle and changed my name to Howdy YAL. I also respond to MJ. I like to read, write, eat truffles, and watch bad Lifetime movies.
Guys, I’m signing off of doing recently published books for the next week due to the Kathleen Hale situation.
Quite honestly, I have to take a stand because I think what Ms. Hale did was reprehensible and I was hoping that someone-The Guardian, Ms. Hale’s publicist, the packaging company she works for, Harper Collins, or even her cat- would condemn her actions. However, it doesn’t look like there’s going to be a response anytime soon.
I thought about what I was going to do for awhile. I thought about maybe not read anymore Harper Collins books for the time being, but I can’t do that because there are a lot of authors who I really like and who have stood up against Hale that are published by Harper. Though if you’re boycotting Harper, more power to you. I also thought about writing a letter to The Guardian and Harper (and I’m still seriously considering it), but even if I do that will only be seen by them. So when I heard that a group of people are doing a blogger blackout I decided to join.
However, just because I won’t be publishing new reviews for the next week (October 26-November 1) does not mean the blog will be dead. I will posting reviews for older titles, feature posts, and awareness posts.
What Kathleen Hale did was not right. No matter how you spin it. I’ve seen people say that both sides are wrong. I’m sorry, but we are only hearing Hale’s side of the story and I don’t view her as a viable source. Plus, after rereading the story I could find a lot of things about it that raised eyebrows. For example, I have a hard time believing that Blythe would tell Hale that the photo she uses belongs to someone else. It just doesn’t make sense since she’s giving Hale more ammo to go on. Then again, a lot of things about the article and the fact that The Guardian published it doesn’t make sense.
While Ms. Hale might have the backings of a very powerful network behind her, and while I doubt Harper Collins is really going to care whether or not I participate in Blogger Blackout or not, I have to do it for ethical purposes. What has happened in the book blogging world in the past week is startling and uncalled for. Even if the blackout accomplishes nothing with the Harper Collins situation, I think it’s important to take a stand. I might not be a Harvard graduate who’s engaged to someone with very powerful connections in the industry, but I do have a voice. And I intend on using it.