Thursday, August 26, 2010

YA's Far-Reaching Appeal

Admittedly, I'm not exactly ancient.

In fact, I called myself old to a bunch of freshmen in the math class I'm teaching, and they vehemently denied my claim, despite the fact that I've got over a decade on most of them. But, I still love reading YA. It just fits.

That's not all that surprising though.

Here are two things that did rather surprise me this week:

1) My FATHER, upon hearing that I was reading my daughter Harry Potter, wished aloud for another epic YA series to read. This is a grown man, a business owner, non-fiction lover, who spends his free time on golf and home-improvement projects. And he's angsting because Christopher Paolini hasn't gotten the last Eragon book done yet. Though, he's also the man I caught laughing during iCarly, after complaining loudly every time my daughter wanted to watch it.

2) Another teacher at my school totally caught a student trying to get away with something (something I recognized, but figured she wouldn't, since she'd graduated college way before me). Her response? "Please, I invented this."

So now, I'm just wondering why YA isn't more popular than it is. How many sit-coms seem like an adult version of high school? Yeah...I can name a few.

YA's about screwing up, fixing it, knowing yourself, and changing the world. Sounds pretty universal to me.

Comment time: Who's the oldest person you know that enjoys YA, whether they admit it or not?


Lisa_Gibson said...

My mom who is 60-something. She'd kill me if I put it out there. She loves some YA.
Lisa ~ YA Literature Lover

Brandi Bain said...

My 41-year-old husband expressed why he thinks YA is appealing the other night on my blog. This is what he said about my unpublished YA book "Sage" when I asked if it should be adult and not YA. (sorry really not trying to plug my story - it just fits with what you're saying.)
"As you mention, part of the appeal of Sage is that it does straddle that line between youth and adulthood. I think that this is a period during our lives when everything is so emotionally weighted and every decision we make feels like it will have life altering consequences. There's a reason that so many movies and television series are focused on these transitional, formative years. As we mature it seems that our ability to ride that roller coaster is dampened, and we find ourselves longing for those feelings again; which in turn leads us to seek out characters like Sage to relive those experiences vicariously."

Hmath said...

That's interesting, Brandi. I agree that straddling that line between youth and adulthood is a big theme.

I've wondered why there aren't more college age books. I'd read them. There's even room in YA w/o calling them New Adult, in my opinion.

And no, I'm not writing that. I'm just saying.

Sam Ripley said...

I can totally see YA's far-reaching approach. Everyone remembers that time in your life when you were a teenager and felt like the most awkward person on the face of the earth. It's so relatable.

Krista Ashe said...

Does my Grammy count? LOL She's read my YAUF and my YA Contemp. I did turn my cousin on to Twilight a couple years back...she's three years older than I am, and she was totally insensed I suggested a "teenage" book. But now she's a rabid Team Edward fan, lol, and she devoured the books as fast as I did.

Alyson Greene said...

My dad (57) is a total twi-hard. I think it's a little creepy that he goes by himself to the midnight showings of the movies and is surrounded by teen girls.

But I love it that he knew to pre-order Mockingjay and Clockwork Angel for me.

seventies woman said...

55 and I love YA ...among other things.