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Is Reading Young Adult Fiction a Guilty Pleasure?

Tanya Paperny / Friday, June 26, 2009 Comments Off

YA Fiction 2A friend of mine recently bought a copy of Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight … in French.? Though she studied the language in college and speaks semi-fluently, she’s definitely not a proficient reader of French and reads much more quickly and easily in English.? Nevertheless, she’s forcing herself to plow through the French version of the incredibly successful teen vampire novel just so she can feel less guilty about reading it.? She thinks that most people who see her reading Twilight will think that she has terrible taste in literature, so by reading it in French, she can defend herself as merely practicing another language.

To what extremes are we willing to go to hide the fact that many of us still love books that publishers classify as Young Adult (YA) reading?? Has the popularity of books like Harry Potter and Twilight totally changed the scene for adult readers?

While the adults in the publishing industry create rigid genre boundaries, in the minds of readers, these are actually quite flexible.? I’m just as likely to enjoy something on the “Young Adult Fiction” shelf as I am in the “Classics” section. And as the industry continues to suffer during the recession, it’s the sale of young adult content that continues to grow.? So maybe we shouldn’t be so embarrassed?

What do you think?? Are there any great hidden gems in the YA section that adult readers should know about?

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More: Audiences / Books
  • Emily

    My friend Kenna is countering her Twilight guilt by switching between reading Twilight and feminist theories of economics. I think that is ridiculous!

    Books are meant to be enjoyed whether they are making you think or providing a mind numb. If you aren’t too embarrassed to buy it, then you should be able to read it without being ashamed because you are “too cool” to read a book that millions have enjoyed.

    As for YA books I enjoyed :
    “The Giver”
    “The Golden Compass”
    “The Phantom Tollbooth”

  • http://elitist.wordpress.com Jordan

    I have been guilty of the same. I formed a book club for my higher level ESOL high school students recently and we have begun with New Moon. I would be lying if I denied a great amount of pleasure from the fact that I have an “excuse” now to read YA novels. It’s absurd.

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