Posts Tagged: YA Literature

Save the Children

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Graeme Whiting, headmaster of the Acorn School (motto: “Have courage for the truth”) of Nailsworth, Great Britain, recently published a blog post condemning “sensational” fantasy novels such as the Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, and Hunger Games series that feature “dark,” “insensitive,” and “addictive” subjects.

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The Rumpus Interview with Manuel Gonzales

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Manuel Gonzales talks about his new novel, The Regional Office is Under Attack!, transitioning from nonprofit work to teaching, and how to zig when a trope wants you to zag. ...more

YA Novels Help Parents Talk Sex

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A discussion with your kid about the birds and the bees might be one of the more intimidating moments of parenthood, but YA novelists can lend a hand. When YA writers confront modern issues of sex, rape, consent, abuse, and gender, they help parents—and schools—introduce these sensitive topics:

Consent doesn’t even have to be about sex, per se, says Earl Sewell, who has written several young adult novels, including one where a boy pressures a girl to send explicit photos after they start sexting.

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In a World…

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With so many contemporary young adult novels taking place in dystopian settings, we’re beginning to wonder whether it’s even possible to come of age in a world that isn’t on the brink of collapse. Soon enough, paragon network of teenage melodrama The CW will adapt Little Women to the “dystopic streets of Philadelphia,” thereby robbing us of one of the last remaining relics of a time when children could grow up without reference to apocalypses past and present.

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Patriarchy’s Slow Unwinding

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For the New York Times Magazine, A.O. Scott argues about the “slow unwinding” of patriarchy in American culture, drawing on modern television, history, and literature. In part responding to Ruth Graham’s essay at Slate, in which she urges against adults reading young adult fiction, Scott offers a different perspective:

Instead, notwithstanding a few outliers like Henry James and Edith Wharton, we have a literature of boys’ adventures and female sentimentality.

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A Life with Ramona

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Beverly Cleary has been held in high esteem in the minds of just-blooming young readers for generations. But that does not mean that her writing isn’t valuable in deciphering adult struggles too:

With all the worries we have as adults, it’s natural to look at childhood as idyllic and worry-free and it’s far too easy to forget how hard it is to be a kid.

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YA Shaming

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Young adult fiction has never been more popular among grownup-adults—more than half of YA books are sold to people over the age of 18. There isn’t anything wrong with the occasional guilty pleasure, or even in indulging in topics that are, by definition, childish, says Ruth Graham, writing at Slate, but should we be concerned that we’re all losing some perspective?

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The Intern and the Rejectionist

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It’s your two favorite formerly anonymous publishing-industry-bloggers-turned-YA-novelists in one post!

Which is to say: Hilary T. Smith (aka The Intern) interviewed Sarah McCarry (The Rejectionist) about her new book All Our Pretty Songs. A preview:

There is also a weird cultural assumption that if a book is published as young adult it is obligated to provide some sort of moral instruction to its audience, which is deeply bizarre to me…It is not my job as a writer to instill Christian values in schoolchildren, regardless of how my book is marketed…

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