Carlie has a righteous rant going on over at Librarilly Blonde.
A piece in the Washington Post that contains this: "There comes a time in every reader's life when he or she graduates from kids books and young-adult titles to nonfiction with no holds barred and fiction that draws on the full resources of the language in portraying complex human relationships."
Oh, yeah. The writer goes there.
The he asks, "what book made you an adult reader?"
Oh, let me answer! Let me answer!
Because that was when I realized: a good book is a good book is a good book. I didn't have to hide reading kids books or YA books. These books weren't "less" than adult books; there is no "graduation", rather, there are simply books.
Books you like, books you don't; books that touch your heart; books that bore you; books that push your thinking, books that reinforce your thinking. And sometimes they are in the adult section, sometimes the teens, sometimes the children's.
Right on! Books that speak to you, touch a nerve, and stir your soul or make you laugh are what makes reading (or listening to a story) so wonderful.
When I was in middle school, books also served as a way to escape and a way to connect - to what, I'm not sure, but I think to connect to my emotions and the human condition. I still remember the books I adored as a kid - The White Mountain Trilogy by Christopher comes to mind.
I just read The Boy in the Striped Pajamas by John Boyne yesterday, and I think it might be in the top ten of "books that made me an adult reader." I'd definitely put it in the column of "no holds barred" and "draws on the full resources of the language in portraying complex human relationships." In its simplicity it asks the reader to navigate some really complex human problems.
Oh I am so with you there.
Oh yes, Mr. Potter, who reminded me that children's books aren't only for "babies." Something that brought me back to some middle school favorites that were much richer than I remembered, and something that served me well when I started working in children's services (something that happened post Half-Blood Prince).
This post made me so sad, that as a YA author, I just couldn't draw on the full resource of the English language. Or, for that matter, demonstrate any complex human relationships.
I just decided I needed to be reading YA books again and let me tell you 'Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist' blew half the books I read this year to Alaska (which is very far from me).
"And sometimes they are in the adult section, sometimes the teens, sometimes the children's."
Nail on the head! Despite this, I sometimes get slightly embarrassed reading children's books on the bus, if only because I go to Rutgers and yeah... This was especially true when I was reading Animorphs, what with their brightly colored covers illustrated with boys turning into birds.
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