People who think the Young Adult genre is inadequate, or should not be classed as literature, should think again.
Over the years, many news articles have been released arguing against the quality of YA books, criticising their affect on teenagers and adults alike.
While Young Adult books are typically marketed towards teenagers, the only key difference is that the protagonist will be between the ages of 16-19 years old.
Lucy Powrie, teenage UK booktuber and book blogger said “Whether it is books or selfies or the clothes we choose to wear, teenage culture is looked down upon so often that it eventually becomes laughable.”
Not only is the disdain towards teen culture a factor for the ingrained stigma towards YA, but the content itself is often condemned as unimportant.
Many contradictions are faced, with some claiming the topics are too dark for a teenage audience, others declaring the books are fluffy and unimportant.
Anneka Palfreyman, 24, YA fan and avid reader said “A lot of adults don’t realise YA handles a lot of difficult subjects which aren’t always seen in general fiction.”
Teenagers face constant criticism towards their reading habits – or lack of.
But with society in general continuously judging their every choice, it is no wonder the motivation to read is absent.
Young Adult books are directed towards teenagers – and yet teenagers are judged for reading them.
Why is this?
“Part of this problem could be solved if YA was given its own category, rather than being pushed into children’s,” Lucy said.
“It’s frequently situated in bookshops next to the children’s department, away from the adult books as if they’re out of bounds to people over a certain age when, in reality, it’s over 20’s that make up a large part of the YA readership.”
A Darker Shade Of Magic by V.E. Schwab
This is set in a world containing parallel Londons, each with a different strength of magic. Only a few magicians can travel between these worlds. In this first book, Kell – the magician of Red London – finds himself in trouble while smuggling trinkets between the worlds, and the story ensues from there.
Uprooted by Naomi Novik
A dark fantasy inspired by folklore, this is the story of a village plagued by the surrounding woodland. A wizard is set to look over the village and keep the woodland at bay, but in return for keeping the village people safe, he takes one of the their women every 10 years and keeps them in his tower.
The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon
In this world, clairvoyance exists. But being clairvoyant in London is illegal, a problem the main character – Paige Mahoney – has to face. But when Paige is caught and taken against her will, she discovers the world isn’t quite as she knows it.
Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor
Lazlo Strange has always been fascinated with the city of The Weep, specially since the day it’s real name vanished from everyone’s memory. Closed off to all outsiders, the city became a mystery, secluded from the world and it’s people. Until now.
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
During World War II, Liesel Meminger is moved to live with a foster family after her parents are taken away to a concentration camp. A story of war narrated by death, this book tugs at heart strings and shows how war affected many, even away from front lines.