Best Young Adult Novels, Best Teen Fiction, Top 100 Teen Novels. It's almost a cliche at this point to say that teen fiction isn't just for teens anymore.
Just last year, the Association of American Publishers ranked Children's/Young Adult books as the single fastest-growing publishing category. Which is why we were only a little surprised to see the tremendous response that came in for this summer's Best-Ever Teen Fiction poll. A whopping 75,220 of you voted for your favorite young adult novels, blasting past the total for last year's science fiction and fantasy poll at, dare we say it, warp speed. And now, the final results are in. While it's no surprise to see Harry Potter and the Hunger Games trilogy on top, this year's list also highlights some writers we weren't as familiar with. Selecting a manageable voting roster from among the more than 1,200 nominations that came in from readers wasn't easy, and we were happy to be able to rely on such an experienced panel of judges.
Summer, like youth, is fleeting. How Young Adult Fiction Came of Age. Five questions about literature's hottest genre Meredith Barnes, a literary agent with Lowenstein Associates, demonstrates superhuman patience while explaining young adult literature to me.
Covers the history of YA lit. Includes some stats about the number of books published in the 70s vs. today. – libladyjames
I am familiar enough with the basics: that YA is not to the written word as PG is to film.
Best Young Adult Novels, Best Teen Fiction, Top 100 Teen Novels. Jonathan Franzen Says Young Adult Lit Equals "Moral Simplicity" and It's a Tired Insult. Author Jonathan Franzen has never shied away from speaking his mind on everything from Twitter to Oprah’s Book Club to e-books.
Defends YA against author Franzen's characterization. Provides several examples of newly publishes books that are anything but simple: This Side of Home (Watson), I'll Give You the Sun (Nelson), I'll Meet You There (Demetrios), 100 Sideways Miles (Smith), Noggin (Whaley), The Impossible Knife of Memory (Anderson). Must read these! – libladyjames
The first is “unspeakably irritating,” the second is “for women,” and the third is ”corroding values,” according to the writer.
And now Franzen is criticizing young adult literature, saying that it equates to “moral simplicity.” Come on, Franzen, this is a tired insult; we YA lit lovers have heard this one before. Franzen spoke with Butler University as part of a visiting writers program, where he took part in a Q&A, a reading, and an interview with an MFA candidate. It was in that interview that the MFA student Susan Lerner brought up Ruth Graham’s piece on adults reading young adult novels.
Franzen, at first was tightlipped, saying that he didn’t care what people read. Most of what people read, if you go to the bookshelf in the airport convenience store and look at what’s there, even if it doesn’t have a YA on the spine, is YA in its moral simplicity. Sighs. Against YA: Adults should be embarrassed to read children’s books.
Illustration by Liana Finck.
Argues that adults shouldn't limit their reading to YA, suggesting that YA is too simplistic and immature to learn much from. Grrr. – libladyjames
As The Fault in Our Stars barrels into theaters this weekend virtually guaranteed to become a blockbuster, it can be hard to remember that once upon a time, an adult might have felt embarrassed to be caught reading the novel that inspired it.
Not because it is bad—it isn’t—but because it was written for teenagers. Ruth Graham is a regular Slate contributor. She lives in New Hampshire. The once-unseemly notion that it’s acceptable for not-young adults to read young-adult fiction is now conventional wisdom. The largest group of buyers in that survey—accounting for a whopping 28 percent of all YA sales—are between ages 30 and 44. Let’s set aside the transparently trashy stuff like Divergent and Twilight, which no one defends as serious literature. The Fault in Our Stars is the most obvious juggernaut, but it’s not the only YA book for which adults (and Hollywood) have gone crazy. That will sound harsh to these characters’ legions of ardent fans. Vandergrift's 100 List.
Dated list of the 100 Top YA titles. List was first created in 1995 though titles have been added. An interesting place to explore the evolution of YA – libladyjames
A brief history of young adult literature. Thursday is Celebrate Teen Literature Day, part of National Library Week.
Article on the history of YA written in 2013. Discusses important writers since YA was first identified in the 1960s. Some discussion of common themes and trends. Emphasis on dystopian lit, which may be fading. – libladyjames
But with young adult literature regularly burning up the bestseller lists, it's clear many young adults don't need an excuse to seek out the written word: Sixteen- to 29-year-olds are the largest group checking out books from their local libraries, according to a Pew survey.
Wizards, vampires and dystopian future worlds didn't always dominate the genre, which hit its last peak of popularity in the 1970s with the success of controversial novels by the likes of Judy Blume. In the years between, young adult has managed to capture the singular passions of the teen audience over a spectrum of subgenres. Now, as the book industry enjoys a second "golden age of young adult fiction," according to expert Michael Cart, it bears asking why young adult fiction has become so successful. The proof just may be in the timeline. The book world began marketing directly to teens for the first time at the turn of the millennium.