Sex in YA: Everybody Does “It,” Nobody Talks About It

Originally Published: December 9th, 2013; Updated: June 24th, 2014 In Young Adult Literature, How Should Sex Exist? Sex is a basic human need. When we’re young, we’re curious about it; as we mature, we want it and once we have it, we crave it. If we aren’t having it, we’re daydreaming about it, reflecting on past experiences, looking ahead…

Zombies, Vampires, and Katniss Everdeen, Oh My!

Originally Published: October 28th, 2013; Updated June 24th, 2014 The end is nigh. The apocalypse is upon us. . The sparkly vampire, zombie, post-apocalyptic, dystopian craze is coming to an end. According to an article in Publisher’s Weekly by Sue Corbett, “New Trends in YA: The Agent’s Perspective,” agents are now looking beyond paranormal and sic-fi/fantasy;…

The Great Escape! Escapism in Children’s Lit

Originally Published: October 4th, 2013; Updated: June 24th, 2014 Escapism in Children’s Literature Children’s literature can take many forms, from sweeping sci-fi and fantasy epics to riveting who-done-it mysteries. One of the most popular ideas presented in these various forms is that of escapism, which authors use as a way for their main characters to…

The Book I Wish I Had Written: Openly Straight

Originally Published: June 14th, 2013; Updated: June 24th, 2014 What’s the difference between “tolerance,” “acceptance,” and “celebration”? I never thought much about it before. Or at least, I never sat down and had a conversation about the inherent difference in that collection of words; not in a concrete way, anyway. For the length of this…

Vernacular in MT Anderson’s “Feed”

Originally Published: October 7th, 2013; Updated: June 24th, 2014 One of the most immediate reactions I had while reading Feed was the idea that author M.T. Anderson was writing a satire on teens in our modern society in his use of vernacular. Anderson created his own slang and idiolect between Titus and his friends. In…

Books I Love, Part I

“Why would I want to read a character about a gay teen when I’m not a gay teen?” Why would I want to read about a boy wizard in England when I’m not a boy wizard in England? Exactly. Because in the end, books are about the human experience, not the labels given to the…