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13 June 2011 @ 05:15 am
Young Adult Tug of War  
Why The Best Kids Books Are Written In Blood

Darkness Too Visible

Are YA books too dark these days? Should all YA books portray only healthy families and situations? Is it possible to shield children completely (and ALL children or just a fortunate few)? What do the so-called "dark" books contribute? Can they do any harm?

I have my own ideas on the subject but I thought I'd let people weigh in, and I'd like to mull over all of my thoughts about my own reading during my teen years and the YA books I've been previewing for my grandkids. One thing I will say, I do think it is important to read the books one brings into the home but I think my criteria may differ from those of some parents and grandparents. Naturally, those in the YA age range will also find their own books in libraries, bookstores or online. But a healthy dose of books previewed for quality may help guide them in choosing and evaluating their own books.
 
 
 
Mari Adkinsmariadkins on June 13th, 2011 03:58 pm (UTC)
i was reading stephen king when i was eleven. so i'm probably not the best person to respond to this. LOL
Elle: Mikey Gee artistictheletterelle on June 13th, 2011 06:30 pm (UTC)
I agree with Alexie-- Gordon seems to be terrified of the despoliation of middle-class innocence. I think if it's taken her that long to realize that there are problems in the world that are reflected in fiction, she's hopelessly naive.
Erik: booksDangerousThoughtseriktrips on June 14th, 2011 04:35 am (UTC)
Just going on my own experience, I think that there is a definite need for YA literature to be real. Young people grow up in all sorts of environments and have all sorts of problems and disabilities. The first time I read a book that spoke to my own feelings of extreme isolation it was both a complete shock and a complete lifesaver. I had no idea anyone else had ever thought the same sorts of things I was thinking. I actively hunted and devoured books after that.

I wish that some of today's YA literature had been available to me then. It would really have helped me understand that there was a way out that wouldn't kill me.