Saturday, July 21, 2012

Easy to Enjoy

My review of the YA (young adult) book Easy by Tammara Webber went live this weekend on AAR.  I'm still confused by the YA designation in fiction books.

Once upon a time, in a galaxy far, far away (Nebraska), I was a library page and then a library aide.  Back then, when the University of Nebraska / Lincoln housed one of the largest displays of dinosaur bones, YA books were meant for junior high and early high school readers.

Easy might be read by those readers today, but because of its theme of consensual sex and its milieu of frat parties, dorms, and large lecture classes, I can't imagine it makes much sense to young adults in the early years of high school.

But that's not what bothers me.  What bothers me is that the readers who should be reading it--those who are just going off to college or are in their first year--will be missing a very good book, not to mention some good tips on how to cope with being alone on campus for the first time away from family.

So my real question is why we need to segment the adult designation for books.  Why can't we just call these books fiction without having to designate what age "adult" will enjoy them?  Can't I as an adult enjoy a book that centers around adults of any age?  Or must the standard be that adults begin life in their mid-20s?

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