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demographic to make sales. It seems that her skills in marketing far exceed her ability to craft an art- ful narrative.
Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur
Another title sure to stoke con- troversy among readers, Milk and Honey helped fertilize the growing trend of Instapoetry, where people write poems and post themon social media like Instagram . For over a year, this book filled the shelves of book- stores around the world because of its popularity. Like the previous writer, it seems Kaur figured out that more people buy books than actually read them.
THE AMANDA SHOW Oh, what a year
W ell folks, here we are. It is the end of the semester, but more than that, we are near- ing the end of 2020. For most of us, this year started with good intentions, but quickly devolved into the garbage fire that it is. But for me, 2020 wasn’t a full indus- trial garbage container lit ablaze. In what could have been the worst year ever, my 2020 wasn’t as bad as it could have been. I know this is a hot take, so let me explain. January: I set my intentions for the year and wrote out a list of goals, all culminating in submit- ting law school applications. February: I stumbled upon a group of friends full of kindred spirits. We were able to get more and more connected, just before social isolation began. March: Queue the end of the world, but the start of me having time to dedicate to LSAT studying for hours on end. April: More of that. May: The day the stay-at-home orders lifted, I was able to see my friends. They helped us move into a perfect apartment to whether a pandemic. June: My husband and I went on weekly hikes with our best friends. We would reach a summit above Boulder at 8PM to listen to the city howl, and we would join in with them. July: My first go at the LSAT. More hiking. I started taking med- ication to help my anxiety, which changed my outlook on life. August: We went to Montana and saw some of the most beauti- ful sights I’ve ever seen. Also, more LSAT. September: We went back to Montana with our friends for the best trip I’ve ever had, staring at the stars and listening to Billie Holiday while cooking dinners. October: I took the LSAT for the final time. I got a score that opened doors for me. My friends stood by my side and celebrated with me as I applied to law schools. November: I’ve been admitted to five law schools and given schol- arship opportunities I never could have dreamed of. I know I’m in the minority here, but in a year that could have been the worst, there were plenty of hidden gems that made it more than I ever could have expected. I had my own personal garbage fires, but focusing on the short- comings of the year won’t get me anywhere. 2020 taught me to look for the good things, and this year, I’ve been surrounded by them.
Violet Bent Backwards over the
Grass by Lana Del Rey (2020)
Released in 2020, this collection of spoken word poetry by Lana Del Rey presents a stale and unrefined glimpse into her life as a celebrity. At points it gets personal, but the language and subject matter feel so detached from reality. It almost reads more like diary entries from Mitt Romney than a book of poetry. Given the state of the world, Del Rey at least managed to avoid fueling the dumpster fire. Like any art, literature exists on a spectrum between avant-garde and entertainment. Surely the list of terrible books far outnumbers the list of great books, but it’s all subjec- tive. None of these works should be a target for censorship, but consider looking to other books instead for inspiration.
I l lust rat ion: Rigby Guer rero • The Sent ry
BAD BOOKS ARE OFTEN SOME OF THE MOST POPULAR ONES.
Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand
and some just intentionally appeal to a certain market. While it might seem easy to ignore these titles and deny them any more attention, some might actually be poisonous to society.
FROM MARK TWAIN TO LANA DEL REY
Of all the terrible books written by Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged often gets the most praise by people who love capitalism. Almost like a work of American propaganda, the entire story seems to support a bizarre dystopia where corporations can do whatever they want. Atlas Shrugged still influences conservatives and libertarians, providing them a text to cling to like a Bible.
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
by Trevor Leach
by Mark Twain (1884)
Mark Twain supposedly wrote this book to mock the racism of the South, yet it consumed nearly every aspect of the story. Literary critics from the time it was written until the present have questioned the importance of the novel. Despite the excessive use of racist language and tropes, many schools still require their students to read it. Recently that trend has started to shift, with some school districts banning the book for that reason.
B ooks usually lead the imag- ination on a journey to another world and help to escape the realities of the present. Yet, just because a person can write doesn’t mean they should. Below are several books thatmight serve better as kindling in a fire during the cold months of winter instead of reading them. Some lack artistry, some pro- mote disturbing political divisions,
Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
Perhaps the most controversial addition to this list, the Twilight series stuck fangs in the hearts of a generation. Any novel that involves vampires usually strays down an alley of kitsch and cliché, but this book especially sought a specific
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WO R S T S T R E AM I N G S E R V I C E
rich, out of touch Gen Xer trying to make something “the kids” will like: a streaming service that can only be watched on a phone, where every show is at max 10 minutes long. In other words, Katzenberg took the stereotype of young people always being on their phones with short attention spans and tried to mone- tize it. The idea appealed to plenty of other people too, with Quibi raising over one billion dollars before launch from investors. The result is simply a streaming service not for anyone. Get really invested in a show and want to watch it on your tv? That option is unavailable. What about the option to flip the phone either vertically or horizontally, letting the viewer see different angles? Horrendous. Switching in the middle of scenes doesn’t let viewers knowwhat they’re actually supposed to be watching. In practice, it’s making the consumer edit the video for themselves instead of enjoying a story. How about the amount of quality content? Very lit- tle, and everything’s so short it hardly
THE RISE AND FALL OF QUIBI
by Jeremiah Blackman
T here comes a time in every executive’s life when they have to face themselves and ask: why am I running a company and not raking in some streaming service money like my buddies? Usually there is no good reason, at least in their minds, which has led to the expansive streaming land- scape consumers find themselves in today. The public has this come to Jesus moment to thank for YouTube TV, Apple+, Amazon Prime Video, and now finally: Quibi. Helmed by Jeffery Katzenberg, former head of Disney, no streaming service has been quite as cynically designed, poorly thought-out, or horribly executed as Quibi. The core idea sounds like the mad ravings of a
Photo cour tesy of Quibi COMPOUND BAD DECISIONS AND GET QUIBI.
feels substantial enough to warrant the price. That’s not to say there wasn’t good content, the Reno 911 reboot proved to be a specific standout, but it’s not surprising the service shut down within six months of launch- ing. It turns out that enormously
wealthy old white people don’t know what the kids want. But it was their trying that led to Quibi being the worst streaming service.
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