Bookin' It

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Young Adult Books

You might wonder why I read and review Young Adult novels when I’m certainly well beyond the”young” part of that designation.  The reason is simple.  The only difference between a Young Adult novel and a novel for us not-so-young adults should be a lack of heavy sexual content, graphic violence, and adult language.  All things I can take or leave in a story, anyway. 

Young Adult novels should not sound like they were written for third graders, nor like they were written BY third graders.  So, if done properly it stands to reason they should be stories that adults can enjoy, too.  And many of today’s Young Adult novels are done quite well, even though the genre is a bit crowded with fallen angels, vampires, and things that go bump in the night.  I really enjoy urban fantasy, myself, but I would like to see a broader scope of subjects offered to young readers, lest they end up thinking that’s all there is. 

I have read quite a few Young Adult novels in the last couple of years that were well written and thought provoking, in addition to telling exciting stories.  I’ve already reviewed a couple here, including one I loved, The Scorpio Races, and one I wasn’t fond of, The Golden Lily.  I have several more I’ll be reviewing over the next few days, and no doubt will continue to read others as they come to my attention. 

If you have avoided reading Young Adult novels for fear they would be disappointing or immature, you might find out that isn’t always the case.  I encourage you to try one or two for yourself.  For starters, you might check to see if any of your favorite “regular” authors has written any Young Adult books.  You might be surprised at how good some of them are.

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8 thoughts on “Young Adult Books

  1. Susana on said:

    I agree with you Marcia. I have read quite a number of YA novels whose writing i found to be superior to the so-called adult genre, and whose characters are mature beyond their ages. But the opposite happens as well. Ya and adult should not be used as a “marker” for quality or lack thereof. Every case is a case, every book is a book.

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  2. You are so right, Susana. Some of my favorite books in the WORLD are YA books, like Scorpio Races. And some of my least favorite were written for adults. If a book sounds interesting to me, I’m probably going to give it a try, whether it is marketed for Young Adults or not.

    We are in complete agreement on this, Susana. So good to see you posting here, too. Thanks for stopping by!

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  3. Susana on said:

    Yes, i definitely have a lot of favorite books among the Ya genre. I still haven’t read “Scorpio Races”, but i expect to do it in the next couple of months.

    I have read Maggie Stiefvater “Mercy Falls” series and i loved the writing. So beautifully crafted. The first one “Shiver” is probably my favorite alongside the third one in the story “Forever”.

    In the adult genre, the most beautifully written _ for me, _ are the works of Patricia A. Mckillip, Sarah Addison Allen’s stories, Alice Hoffman words are so beautiful even when they are breaking my heart, lol, and Barbara Ashford’s magical scenarios are amongst my favorites.

    Oh, and recently i’ve read a book by author Diana Peterfreund ( so sorry if i spelled this wrong) called “For darkness shows the stars”. And i loved the writing. The storyline is based on Jane Austen’s “Persuasion”, which is one my favorite books, so it was great seeing Elliot (Anne) and Kai (Cap. Wentworth) once again in a very peculiar story, but in which Anne’s and Wentworth’s feelings were all there.

    …..Okay, i’m going to stop rambling now!
    See you !

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  4. I love your ramblings! You always give me something to think about. I really enjoyed The Wolves of Mercy Falls, too, but with The Scorpio Races, she got even better. I can’t wait for you to read it one day, and see how you feel about it. What a world Stiefvater created!

    I’m taking note of some of your favorite authors to try for myself. Of course, you know how I feel about Sarah Addison Allen and Barbara Ashford. But I haven’t read Hoffman or McKillip. I’m going to go searching for them tonight. I think I did see something on For Darkness Shows The Stars, but since I have never gotten around to reading Persuasion (yet), I thought I might hold off on that one awhile.

    Later!

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  5. An interesting thing to point out to people who don’t like young adult or think it’s beneath them: Sixty years ago, To Kill a Mockingbird and Catcher in the Rye would have been marketed as young adult.

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  6. Funny, I was JUST thinking that the other day. We were required to read BOTH way back when I was in high school. Things like Treasure Island come to mind, too. They were considered essential reading for young minds in those days. And now look what classics they have become. Thanks for mentioning that here. It’s important to realize that if you don’t even consider YA books when choosing what to read, you might be missing out on the next great classic.

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  7. Absolutely Marcia. What’s wrong with YA? I love reading YA, somehow it transports me back in time, and that has to be a good thing! Of course, being a hopeful middle grade/YA author reading children’s literature is so, so, important. Reading widely is a must. Anyway, I love to read, and talk about books. I’m missing my bookish daughter, she’s gone off to University, to study English Literature and Philosophy but on the plus side she has left half of her YA book collection here for me to peruse and read! So lucky!

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  8. I agree completely, especially the transporting back in time part. I love well done YA books, for sure, and I see more and more of them, which tells me there are still young people who read out there. (At least, I hope they aren’t all being bought by those of us who want to be transported back in time. 😀 ) Thanks for commenting! I totally forgot about this post, and what it means to me. (You’ve been digging in the archives, and I’m happy to see that!) Have a great weekend.

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