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The Dark Reality of YA Fiction

DARKNESS TOO VISIBLE (from the Wall Street Journal)

"How dark is contemporary fiction for teens? Darker than when you were a child, my dear: So dark that kidnapping and pederasty and incest and brutal beatings are now just part of the run of things in novels directed, broadly speaking, at children from the ages of 12 to 18.

"Pathologies that went undescribed in print 40 years ago, that were still only sparingly outlined a generation ago, are now spelled out in stomach-clenching detail. Profanity that would get a song or movie branded with a parental warning is, in young-adult novels, so commonplace that most reviewers do not even remark upon it..."

I was going to comment. But, frankly, I think I need time to absorb it.

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( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 5th, 2011 02:58 pm (UTC)
It is articles like this that just piss me off to no end. First off, didn't anyone ever hear don't judge a book by it's cover and second, Barnes & Noble only has Twilight on their shelves. She should've gone to a different bookstore!

The sidebar really did me in by separating what books are boy/girl appropriate. Give me a break, c'mon, can't anyone read Shipbreaker? (and honestly, you should, it's fantastic!)

These are book that are relevant to what our teens are going through right now and it also gives them a chance to realize that they are not alone and help is really around the corner. The author of this article is really out of touch when it comes to YA books and the YA community. I am so happy to be surrounded by so many smart, witty, and amazing authors who do a world of good. You guys are the rockstars!
Jun. 6th, 2011 03:39 pm (UTC)
"The author of this article is really out of touch when it comes to YA books and the YA community."

(Deleted comment)
Jun. 6th, 2011 05:24 pm (UTC)
I think this is why kids of our generation jumped from children's books directly to adult books, because I did the same thing. With a few notable exceptions, I found most YA books of that time to be insipid and yawn-inspiring, with fairly unrelatable characters. I swear I went from Harriet the Spy to Victoria Holt and Phyllis Whitney in the space of one year.
Jun. 6th, 2011 06:21 pm (UTC)
Hear ye, hear ye! Me too. I read every Little House book I could read, then I read these 'teen' books similar in style to Judy Blume up until age 12 or so. Then I went right to Sidney Sheldon, Jackie Collins, Harold Robbins, etc...

Even though VC Andrews during the late 70s/early 80s was considered adult and horror, I read those too. But it's funny how now they consider her young adult. I mean really... ;p

There is such a variety of books out there and so many of them, that they're not going to read all the dark ones either. You know I just more and more angrier just thinking of this.
Jun. 7th, 2011 01:51 pm (UTC)
I remember my 7th grade science teacher flipping out when he saw my copy of Valley of the Dolls, lol.
Jun. 7th, 2011 01:41 pm (UTC)
This article is such a joke. Dark YA fiction is something many teens can relate to and, as a result, find solace from. It's not going to "corrupt" them, or something ridiculous like that. Sheesh.
Jun. 7th, 2011 01:52 pm (UTC)
I agree with what Melodye said on my FB page, that all this crap does is guarantee more hits on the website.
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )


Jeannine Garsee

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