Thursday, June 27, 2013

Loving and Hating YA Lit

First, a bonus story:

Yesterday, Buster's dinner table conversation was a bit startling.

Buster: We saw our taekwondo masters without their clothes on!

Me, not panicking, since I am an experienced parent:  Oh. They weren't wearing their uniforms?
Buster: Nope
Me: What were they wearing?
Buster: Regular clothes.

It's not nearly as good a story with the follow up detail, but avoids having to race to the the martial arts studio with stern words.


Onto the main topic/rant:

I was once a voracious reader.  I consumed books.  Then I had children.

When I read books these days, I still gulp them down, but there are far longer spaces in between books than in the past, due to a combination of reading more on social media, taking care of the boys, and working a lot. So, that means that I'm pickier about what I read.  I probably read a lot of iffy books before in the past, but between a lot of great ones, it didn't matter.

A few recent books that come to mind:

I read all of the Twilight series, even though Bella was spineless and Edward and Jacob were so high maintenance.  The story was just really catchy, in spite of the somewhat insipid love triangle.

I read the Hunger Games series.  YA dystopia, government mandated roles, love triangle.  Loved the first one, and the sequels were pretty good.

I read The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and enjoyed it, but stopped there because the violence was too graphic to really enjoy.

I read Matched, which was being called the next Hunger Games, and it was decent, but felt so derivative that I haven't been able to bring myself to read the sequels. YA dystopia, government mandated roles, love triangle.

Now, I'm reading Divergent, which is also being hailed as the next Hunger Games.  YA dystopia, government mandated roles.  So far, no love triangle.  High level of violence.  Somehow I'm finding the violence more irritating than in Hunger Games, which has the kids actually killing each other, so perhaps this author just isn't as deft.  So, to finish or not to finish?  The movie comes out later this year, so I might read it and see if it gets better.

And then I'm going to read some nice costuming books with gorgeous pictures.

P.S. As someone who specializes in organizations, I find the hyper categorization of people in all the dystopian tales to be somewhat hilarious.  The amount of bureaucracy to manage it would collapse under its own weight in about ten days.


Bob said...

Yes, an experienced parent indeed.
Did not panic.

mayberry said...

I felt the same way about the Stieg Larsson series. Just could not continue.

We are listening to the Charlie Bone series in the car lately - it's definitely Harry Potter inspired, but we're enjoying it.