I think that sometimes adult readers feel a little embarrassed about reading a YA novel because they think that YA novels are, you know, less complicated than adult ones. So, if someone catches you reading a YA novel, they might think you’re a bit immature and can’t grasp the complexities of adulthood. You know how we all tend to judge people based on what they’re reading. If you’re trying to look impressive to your date, you’d probably bring War and Peace or some super highfalutin literary novel, not Teen Witch 3: Revenge of the Goth Girls. (I made that title up, although now I kinda want to read it!)
But you know what? The idea that YA is somehow dumbed down literature is a big fat lie. Children’s and YA books can be every bit as sophisticated and beautifully written and engaging and complex as adult novels.
Malindo Lo, A message to my adult readers
One of my favorite authors, John Green, announced the title of his new book a few days ago – The Fault In Our Stars. I think he’s one of the best examples of why YA lit is relevant to everyone. If you haven’t read anything of his, I highly recommend both Looking For Alaska and Paper Towns. I haven’t read An Abundance of Katherines (I tried, but I wasn’t really in the mood for it at the time and I haven’t gone back yet), but it’s on my list.
The great thing about John (and his brother Hank) Green is that he’s a co-founder of the Nerdfighters. Long story short, John and Hank committed to only communicating via vlog (hence, the Vlogbrothers) for a year, and unintentionally created a massive community of people who love their work and personalities and things of all nerdy stripes.
Longest story short, the new announcement has led to a Tumblr filled with submission ideas for the new book cover art. And some of them are really, really beautiful.
On another note, I’m on the hunt for books that involve dreams. Not a novel that ends with it all having been a dream – everyone pretty much unanimously hates those – but a novel that uses the dreams to connect worlds and to really reveal character. I don’t want to say too much, but I’m just looking for anything that places a heavy emphasis on the dream world. My latest writing adventure would suggest that perhaps I’ve been watching a bit too much Fringe lately – but is there such a thing?