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I'm so embarrassed but I'm reading more young adult romances
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sanalayla



Joined: 21 Jan 2008
Posts: 284

PostPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2012 7:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jaime wrote:
I went through a phase when I read a lot of YA books - catching up especially on YA titles I didn't read when I was a new adult. I grew out of the YA phase mainly because of the genre's tendency towards emo navel gazing, and also because I have nothing in common with the heroines and it was hard to identify with them.


Yeah, that's the experience I've had as well. There is so much angst and the heroines make so many bad decisions. Just because a person's a teenager doesn't mean they need to be depressed all the time.

I recently tried to read a couple of series that had a lot of good reviews and I was unable to get through them because of the heroines. One was the Mythos Academy series (it was terrible on all levels and read like very bad fanfiction) and the other was Hex Hall (incredibly boring lead character).

Quote:
That said - there are amazing and imaginative children's and new adult books out there - especially in the fantasy and sci-fi genre.


I find, honestly, that I enjoy the children's books more at times. My son is 11 and so I end up reading a lot of books with him just so we have things to talk about. I find a lot of epic quests and fun character development that the Young Adult and New Adult genres don't always have -- a lot of those books get caught up in whether or not a girl will choose Guy 1 or Guy 2. I love romance, but I need a lot more depth in my romance than that.
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jaime



Joined: 23 Sep 2011
Posts: 525

PostPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2012 9:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

sanalayla wrote:
jaime wrote:
I went through a phase when I read a lot of YA books - catching up especially on YA titles I didn't read when I was a new adult. I grew out of the YA phase mainly because of the genre's tendency towards emo navel gazing, and also because I have nothing in common with the heroines and it was hard to identify with them.


Yeah, that's the experience I've had as well. There is so much angst and the heroines make so many bad decisions. Just because a person's a teenager doesn't mean they need to be depressed all the time.

I recently tried to read a couple of series that had a lot of good reviews and I was unable to get through them because of the heroines. One was the Mythos Academy series (it was terrible on all levels and read like very bad fanfiction) and the other was Hex Hall (incredibly boring lead character).

Quote:
That said - there are amazing and imaginative children's and new adult books out there - especially in the fantasy and sci-fi genre.


I find, honestly, that I enjoy the children's books more at times. My son is 11 and so I end up reading a lot of books with him just so we have things to talk about. I find a lot of epic quests and fun character development that the Young Adult and New Adult genres don't always have -- a lot of those books get caught up in whether or not a girl will choose Guy 1 or Guy 2. I love romance, but I need a lot more depth in my romance than that.


I too enjoy well-written children's books very much. I recently read "The Thief", "The Queen Of Attolia" and "The King Of Attolia" by Megan Whalen Turner and thought those books were better written and more complex than some of the adult fiction I have read lately.

The thing that often prevents me from enjoying YA books is the average teenage girl character in them. Very Happy I really only liked teenagers when I was one myself.
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Linda in sw va



Joined: 27 Mar 2007
Posts: 4708

PostPosted: Wed Dec 05, 2012 7:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

bookmark wrote:

I prefer no sex in contemporary young adult books. I think about my nieces and nephews and just want to live in lala land of young people not having sex.
.


I don't look at it this way, I have two kids aged 19 (daughter) and 17 (son), I don't think of them at all when I'm reading young adult novels. I'm remembering back to myself at 17 falling in love for the first time and how fun and exciting that was. I can remember my first heartbreak vividly so that's what I identify with.

I like the lack of pages full of detailed sex scenes because I don't think they're necessary and often take away from the story rather than add to it. With exceptions here and there of course. Smile

Linda
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bookmark



Joined: 06 Nov 2007
Posts: 322

PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2012 2:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I guess, Linda, I just remember what an innocent teenager (actually even my very early 20's) I was. Sure I was crazy about boys and had relationships with them, but all very innocent, kisses and such, but we weren't sex obsessed that age. Now I don't know if that was the norm or not. All I know was that other kids that i surrounded myself with were the same way. Looking back, I was very glad it was that way for me because what do teenagers really know about sex and other consequences, especially when most kids are not well informed about it.
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Linda in sw va



Joined: 27 Mar 2007
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2012 7:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

bookmark wrote:
I guess, Linda, I just remember what an innocent teenager (actually even my very early 20's) I was. Sure I was crazy about boys and had relationships with them, but all very innocent, kisses and such, but we weren't sex obsessed that age. Now I don't know if that was the norm or not. All I know was that other kids that i surrounded myself with were the same way. Looking back, I was very glad it was that way for me because what do teenagers really know about sex and other consequences, especially when most kids are not well informed about it.


That's interesting, it's more of an opposite situation here. I can't claim I was an innocent teenager, nor were the other kids (teens) surrounding me innocent sexually. There were a lot of drugs, sex and fights at the high school I attended, my own kids were more sheltered growing up here out in the country and that's one reason I wanted to raise them here.

I can remember my first love and having him break my heart when I was 17, I got up crying and went to bed crying for 2 weeks straight. My parents didn't know what to do with me. So I get it when YA protagonists go through this. I'm still friends with the guy actually and keep up with him now on Facebook! lol

Just goes to show how much our own backgrounds come into play as we're reading and shape our own approach to taking in the characters.

Linda
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Maggie AAR
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Joined: 23 Mar 2007
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2012 11:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Linda in sw va wrote:


I like the lack of pages full of detailed sex scenes because I don't think they're necessary and often take away from the story rather than add to it. With exceptions here and there of course. Smile

Linda


I agree Linda. Often times in a romance (like the latest Linda Howard) I feel like the author throws the sex scenes in to meet a quota. That makes the scenes boring and irrelevant to the story, so I skim them and move on. Every once in awhile I will run into a scene where I feel it is relevant to the tale - Open Season by Howard for example. But a lot of times they aren't necessary and are almost funny as a result.

maggie b.
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Mark



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 1385

PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2012 11:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is definitely no reason to be embarrassed about anything one chooses to read, no matter how far one may be from the nominal target audience.
Many well-written books are enjoyable for readers of many ages, not just readers near the ages of their protagonists. I read Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J. K. Rowling in 2001, shortly before the first movie came out, after a fair amount of buzz but before the level of cultural pervasiveness achieved by the completed series of 7 books and the matching movies. The Harry Potter books have young protagonists, but I think mature readers can actually get a lot more out of them than young readers. For instance, I had guessed the nature (though not the duration & intensity) of Snape's big secret before it was revealed, and I suspect I guessed partly because of my romance reading. I enjoyed all the books and all the movies.
The Narnia books provide a different kind of example. I read The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis in 2005, around the time a movie version came out. This book felt EXTREMELY age-limited, not really suitable for any reader beyond early elementary school. I did not bother to see the movie.
Sorcery and Cecelia by Caroline Stevermer and Patricia C. Wrede provides a third kind of example. I bought & enjoyed it when it first came out decades ago in a mass-market paperback that looked like any other fantasy, with no YA packaging. More recently, Sorcery and Cecelia and two sequels, The Grand Tour and The Mislaid Magician, were published in odd-sized paperbacks with distinctly YA packaging. The contents of Sorcery and Cecelia did not change between editions, only the packaging. (The trilogy also finally showed up as ebooks this year.)
All my examples are from F&SF, but the principles of universality vs. age-specificity vs. packaging apply to any fiction.
A slightly different point occurred to me: many of the classics or works cited as great literature feature young protagonists, yet these plays & books are not assumed to be only for young readers: Romeo & Juliet, Huck Finn, Tom Sawyer, etc.
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bookmark



Joined: 06 Nov 2007
Posts: 322

PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2012 1:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mark wrote:

A slightly different point occurred to me: many of the classics or works cited as great literature feature young protagonists, yet these plays & books are not assumed to be only for young readers: Romeo & Juliet, Huck Finn, Tom Sawyer, etc.


Very good point.
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Nana



Joined: 02 Apr 2007
Posts: 948

PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2012 5:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm a teacher so my excuse is that I have to read them so I can recommend them to students. What suffering! I am quite excited to mine this thread for our librarian's next book orders!

Some outstanding YA romance reads:

-Contemporary: MMca is SO RIGHT to recommend Anna and the French Kiss, especially if you are into contemporary without any traces of SF/Fantasy. The sequel Lola and the Boy Next Door is good but not quite as great. Anna really makes me believe in an HEA despite the ages of the characters. Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles is more edgy but also riveting story about a cheerleader and a Mexican gang member.
- Adventure: The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater, in the young-people-in-danger vein of The Hunger Games.
- Fantasy: Graceling by Kristen Cashore and absolutely anything by Robin McKinley, but especially The Blue Sword and Chalice.
- Historicals: most Eva Ibbotson books, but especially A Countess Below Stairs
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Nana



Joined: 02 Apr 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2012 5:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Linda in sw va wrote:


I like the lack of pages full of detailed sex scenes because I don't think they're necessary and often take away from the story rather than add to it. With exceptions here and there of course. Smile

Linda


I also find that the sex scenes really kill the romantic tension for me. You go from "He wanted her so much" to "How could he want her so much when he'd just had her seven times in the last six hours?" From will-they-or-won't-they to jeez-not-again-doesn't-that-chafe turns the book so blah.
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Linda in sw va



Joined: 27 Mar 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2012 7:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nana wrote:
[o "How could he want her so much when he'd just had her seven times in the last six hours?" .


Made me lol. Very Happy

I'm discovering that a new genre is emerging, New Adult. Protagonists in their early 20's. I think I could settle in this for a while as the perfect balance.

I want to recommend a book to you all that I just finished, Edge of Never by J. A. Redmerski

http://www.amazon.com/The-Edge-of-Never-ebook/dp/B00A7EPCY8/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1355229151&sr=1-1&keywords=edge+of+never+kindle

The heroine is 20 and the hero is 25. The build up of sexual tension is so well done, it makes their encounter when it finally happens all the more special. There are a few sex scenes but what they lack in quantity they make up for in quality, the chemistry is off the charts!

Two very likable characters that get to know each other during a road trip. No secret babies, no big misunderstanding, none of the cliché. I couldn't put it down, for two days I had my nose stuck in that book every free chance I got. I've got such a crush on Andrew Parrish right now!

Linda
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bookmark



Joined: 06 Nov 2007
Posts: 322

PostPosted: Thu Dec 13, 2012 4:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks guys for more book recs!!!

Just finished a second book in a 4 books series. I really do think series are not my thing. I liked the first book but was struggling to get through the second book. I was just bored. Unless I'm proven wrong by a future book, I don't think I like reading about a main character or couple in more than 1 book.

I wonder if this is the same reason I can't watch shows that depict same people's lives day after day, week after week, etc...
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jaime



Joined: 23 Sep 2011
Posts: 525

PostPosted: Thu Dec 13, 2012 7:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey, I read a really good YA book this week - Jennifer Echols "Going Too Far". It came highly recommended on one of the book blogs I keep up with so I got from the library and read it pretty much straight through. I very much enjoyed it.
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sanalayla



Joined: 21 Jan 2008
Posts: 284

PostPosted: Thu Dec 13, 2012 8:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nana wrote:

- Adventure: The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater, in the young-people-in-danger vein of The Hunger Games.
- Fantasy: Graceling by Kristen Cashore and absolutely anything by Robin McKinley, but especially The Blue Sword and Chalice.


I'll have to check these out. Thanks for the rec! "Scorpio Races" sounds really good, but I think I'm going to have to check out "Graceling" first. I've been looking for something since reading "Cinder" (which was fantastic) and this may be just the book.

Quote:
- Historicals: most Eva Ibbotson books, but especially A Countess Below Stairs


The first time I read "Countess Below the Stairs" was when I was 15 years old (19 years ago) and it's still one of my top ten favorite books ever written. I love that book.
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Natalie



Joined: 25 Mar 2007
Posts: 1693

PostPosted: Thu Dec 13, 2012 10:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've read a bunch of the YA books and loved many of them. They often seem more honest and thoughtful than adult books.

Over the last couple of years, my favorites have been:

Distopias:
The Hunger Games
Insurgent by Veronica Roth
Enclave by Ann Aguirre

Contemporary YA:
Anna and the French Kiss
Easy by Tammara Webber
The Duff by Kody Keplinger

Fantasy:
Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor
The Iron King by Julie Kagawa
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