I can no longer say that I am the target audience for young adult books, and if I am being honest… I haven’t been for a while. However that has not stopped me from reading a high number of YA novels over the past months, or years. In truth is it probably the vast majority of content that I consume.
There are a number of articles complaining about these books which are flooding the shelves but today I am going to write my top five reasons why I love young adult literature.
1. Easy to Read
I often read to escape into a different world. A world where I don’t have any deadlines, or house chores. I want to be fighting monsters, or be the world’s best assasin. I want to be surrounded by the biting cold wind in the middle of summer (preferably on a sun lounger complaining to my long suffering partner that I am too hot) or battling through a stormy sea while hiking up a mountain. I do not want to try and decipher difficult or words rarely used. The vocabulary used within these books is more often than not well within my grasp. This helps me to immerse myself in the story.
While I don’t seem to manage to find masses of the shorter YA books, they are on average a little shorter than the books aimed at adults. When you have committed to reading 40 books in a year like I have in my 2020 Aims it is helpful to know that the books have your back if you start to fall behind.
Now if only I could find them rather than the 450 page epics that I tend to pick up….
3. Tackles serious issues
Most of these books will tackle things that can be difficult to talk about or discuss. Highlighting challenges that teenagers are often dealing with. You can have a character clearly trying to hide their homosexuality, worried about how those around them would react, or struggling to deal with their changing friendships.
All of this is usually interwoven with strong character development allowing the readers to feel empathy for the characters and can allow the reader to see these challenges from another’s point of view, if you haven’t been through them.
A lot of these stories have a coming of age element tied within the plot. Something the reader has either done or at least is going through it. I can still relate to the characters finding it difficult to transition from a teen to an adult.
Going through the different levels of ‘adulting’ can be daunting. Having your first full time job, paying your rent, your first driving lesson, or your first legal drink. All of these things seemed daunting at the time but now they are second nature, is doesn’t prevent you from relating to the characters and in some cases understanding more than you did when you were going through it.
At their core the reason that YA books are well read and enjoyed by a large number of people is that they are ultimately entertaining. I continue to read them because they are often attention grabbing, amusing, heart racing stories. Stories which once I have started them I do not want to put down.
Do you Agree? Do you have any other reasons you would like to add to my list? Let me know in the comments below.