A 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?