Monday, October 16, 2017

Five Reasons Why YA

Mermaid's Secret by Michael Parkes
Show of hands, how many of you adult readers enjoy YA (Young Adult) books?


It surprised me to learn that over 55% of YA readers are over eighteen. Of that 55%, most are actually over thirty. There are good reasons for this, which I'll get to in a moment, but to start, you might like to watch a brief history of how the YA genre got started.

Epic Reads - A Brief History of Young Adult Books

Why Adults Love YA

#1 Rapid Pace

YA books are page turners. The genre is know for high readability, the unputdownable quality that keeps readers engaged, pages flying.

#2 Quality Control

YA books tend to have rigorous editing. Most published are immersive stories with powerful characters and plots. The personal, and global stakes are high, themes deep and complex.

#3 Addressing  Issues

No matter if the YA is contemporary, fiction, Dystopia, SF, Fantasy or Romance, you can bet the author won't shy away from issues of life, death, sex, drugs, gender, bullying, self-worth, suicide, rape, physical and mental health. For the most part, these topics are handled honestly, without judgment or ulterior motives (preaching).

#4 Emotions switched on

Most YA have some elements of romance, or awareness of feelings. The language tends to be visceral, allowing readers to feel what the characters are experiencing. Less "He felt scared," and more, "His heart pounded ..." Frequently, YA is written in the first person making the connection to the main character more intimate.

#5 Pushing the Edge

YA books can bend the rules of genre, formatting and POV (point of view). We see them embracing genre-crossovers like contemporary fantasy, SF thrillers, SF Fantasy, LGBT Historical, you name it. There are also YA books coming out in verse, diaries, social media instant messaging. I'm reading a YA series right now with multiple point of view characters. The main protagonist is in the first person: "I woke up with a knife to my throat." All other POVs are in the third person: "He waited for the right moment to speak."

There are other perks to YA, including the price. Most YA books are priced below their Adult fiction cousins.

How about you? Are you reading YA for any of the above reasons, or perhaps ones outside the box.

Is it something you feel a little awkward about in public, or is that stigma finally dead? With the number of adults reading YA, I certainly hope so!


Kim Falconer's latest release is out now - The Blood in the Beginning - and Ava Sykes Novel.

Learn more about Kim on Facebook and chat with her on Twitter. Check out her pen name, @a.k.wilder on Instagram, or visit AKWilder on FB and website.

Kim also runs where she teaches the law of attraction and astrology. 

Kim posts here at the Supernatural Underground on the 16th of every month, hosts Save the Day Writer's Community on FB and posts a daily astrology weather report on Facebook. 


Helen Lowe said...

Hi Kim, Do you remember when YA crossover fiction used to be called "Kidult"? At any rate, I've always been a fan, for all the reasons you cite. Great post!

Kim Falconer said...

Oh my gosh - Kidult!

I've always been a fan too. Glad you can relate, and I'm glad we have a genre in our own right now. :)