I just recently came across this post on Tumblr, and it hit on a lot of things I have been thinking for the past year and a bit. The poster talks about some of their reasons for reading YA as an adult; because YA is fast-paced and fun to read, not because they want to relive being a teenager, which is a common assumption about adults who read YA.
YA is often looked down on as a book category, most likely because it is a woman-dominated industry (I encourage you to read Nicole's amazing and in-depth Sexism in YA article), and as a result there are quite a lot of people in the YA online community constantly defending YA as a legitimate category. People go through the arguments every time another YA-bashing article comes up (which is a lot, it's getting old): YA has a place; there are awful YA books and there are awesome YA books, just like there are awful adult books and awesome adult books; one is not more "mature" or necessarily better than the other.
I started this blog when I was 15. I'm 22 now. I have been involved, to some extent, in the YA book community for most of that time, so people's fierce defensiveness of YA has worn off on me. A few years ago, probably when I was 16 or 17, I thought that I would never stop reading YA, or being interested in it. It never occurred to me that I would ever start to lose interest in reading YA, because that's all I read, all the time, and I loved it. When my mom said that sometimes YA was too much for her, I thought, well I'm not going to become a boring, no fun adult like that! I am going to read only YA until I die! (Sorry mom).
Well, as it turns out, YA actually is mostly just for teenagers. Who knew that my mom would be right?
Right now, I
feel like I am in an awkward transitional phase between YA and adult, and it manifests itself in a giant book slump where I don't
feel like reading anything. I'm not as interested in YA, but I am also not quite ready to give it up entirely yet. I don't really have a go-to place for books anymore.
The adult fiction (and nonfiction) world is so wide. I don't even know where to start. I knew what YA I liked, I knew where to go and what authors to read. I don't really know where to go to find books I like yet. And while I want to find a place I can go to to find good books, I don't want to limit myself to any one genre either, because I know I can find good books in any number of genres.
Then there's the whole other thing of finding fun books. Some of the best adult books I've read recently haven't really been light reading. Pictures at A Revolution by Mark Harris was gigantic and the current book I'm reading, Ice Diaries by Jean Mcneil is really well written, but very dense. Like that Tumblr post pointed out, I don't really want to read about teens anymore, but I still want to read fun books, books with good characters and fast-paced, interesting plots, that are easy and quick to get through, and a lot of the time, you can find that in YA.
What do you think? Have you read a good, fun and fast-paced adult book with good characters that you could recommend to me? Why do you read YA? Do you have a similar experience?