Thursday, 12 January 2012

Too Old For Young Adult?

I noticed a few days ago that I've been reading far too many young adult books. In fact, I think my consumption of YA novels has increased exponentially shortly after I started blogging. I think it's because most of the blogs I come across and follow have exposed me to so many wonderful YA titles.

However, this little revelation had left me feeling slightly uncomfortable. I've always prided myself at being an advanced reader as I was growing up. Okay, maybe not terribly advanced, but while my classmates were reading Sweet Valley Twins & Friends, I was reading Sweet Valley University and had started looking at R.L. Stine's Fear Street. By the time they had moved on to Sweet Valley High, I was reading John Grisham and Anne Rice. Anyway, you get the picture.

I think the shame of regression might have something to do with that little voice in the back of my head that keeps nagging me that I'm turning 28 this year.

"Vampires sparkle??? Well, I never!"
But then, I thought, so what? At least I'm reading. That's more than I can say for about 80% of the people that I know. As long as I'm deriving pleasure from reading, that's all that matters. Besides, there's quite a few advantages to reading YA books. Here's a few that I thought of:

1. A lot of YA books have fantasy/paranormal themes, which I think encourages readers to use their imagination, therefor exercising the right side of their brain.

2. YA books are cheaper. Enough said.

3. Perusing the YA shelves lets you discover fantastic gems that you otherwise wouldn't. Harry Potter, The Hunger Games, etc.

4. I can read a good romance novel without feeling too embarrassed about the cover. Or worry that I'd end up reading a hard core sex scene while reading in public.

5. Contrary to popular perception, YA are not dumbed-down books with overly simplified plots and non-complex characters. A few of the best characters and plots I've come across were from YA books.

6. The fonts are generally bigger and more vision friendly.

"The vampire baby comes out how???"
Your thoughts?

9 comments:

  1. Yeah I've been reading YA a lot more too, but I don't see anything wrong with it. some YA books are actually very smartly written

    ReplyDelete
  2. I have been thinking the same. I just turned 29 and was always one to read 'above my level' at school. I started blogging one year ago and it opened up the world of YA for me. In 2011, I read a fair few YA books. Some were great, others not so much. I have found that if I read too many, one after the other, I begin to tire of them. So, I've found the best way is to read one or two then read something adult/highly literary to give myself some contrast. No reason we can't enjoy the best of both worlds, right?

    ReplyDelete
  3. That is so true. I absolutely adore YA and hate it when people just dismiss it as "dumbed down" storylines/characters/interactions/etc. Your reasonings are great! Hopefully others will see how one can read YA no matter what their age. :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. I haven't read many YA books but like you Toni I seem to get exposed to so many of them because of blogging! I don't really think it matters how old you are as long as you're reading like you said and if you enjoy it then so what? Isn't Anne Rice the best? I always loved reading her books when I was younger as well :)

    ReplyDelete
  5. first of all, i haven't read a YA book until yesterday - the hunger games - thanks to your reading challenge, actually :) and i actually read it ALL in a day. i was up until 3am!

    anyways, before moving on to february's genre - i figure i could try and plow through the other 2 by the end of the month :) so to your point, YES. because of blogs. and NO, YA books are indeed not dumbed down in any way!!!

    btw, thank you - so much. for inspiring :)

    http://theymaysaythatimadreamer.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Dottie! Aww cheers, you're a sweetie!

      The Hunger Games... *sigh* I'm so jealous you haven't read the other books yet. In fact, I'm jealous of anyone who hasn't read it yet, they're in for a thrill! Isn't it amazing? Katniss rocks my socks. Which is pretty funny, because when I first picked up the book I read through the first few pages and put it aside. What a chump. So glad I actually picked it up again!

      Delete
  6. and i meant i havent read a YA book in the past several years; not, ever. ahaha.

    ReplyDelete
  7. great post /turning 20 in 4 months aaaah

    ReplyDelete
  8. Well, I agree :P Although I am more into Adult books these days :P But still I love YA books! :)

    ReplyDelete