Let's talk about the New Adult genre

Friday, August 8, 2014

Alright, so I know most of the book blogs I follow are primarily dedicated to the love of Young Adult literature, but over the course of the past few years, New Adult has slowly permeated the realm of young reading.

For the longest time, I was so against NA. It just wasn't my cup of tea. All the NA titles I read I found to be lacking in good plots or character development or BOTH! It always made me so sad, which is why I stuck to the YA genre like glue. I found YA character to be rich and beautiful and not diluted by sex and copious amounts of cursing.

I'm 24 years old, and as much as I hate it, I don't feel myself identifying with some YA books as much as I used to. Don't get me wrong, the empathy is still there, and I identify with them to a certain extent, but then there are also times that through growing up, you learn to see through different lenses; lenses that were crafted through your experiences.

I'm still on the side of YA lit, believe me, I love it more than anything, but I have slowly come to also care deeply for the New Adult genre as well, especially after reading Colleen Hoover's Ugly Love. Let me tell you, that book tore my heart out, threw it on the ground, allowed a thousand elephants to trample it into the ground, then shoved it back in my chest, assuming it would beat properly after all of that pain and grief.

I came to the realization that not only does my minor distaste for contemporary realistic fiction become a hindrance to my reading variance, but my dislike for NA was ill founded just the same. I was just reading the wrong NA titles. Obviously, there will be some NA titles that will be terrible and will be lacking in nearly every department except sex, but I also realized that there are other books that are just as good and just as heart shattering as some YA reads.

So what do you think about the New Adult genre? Do you enjoy it, hate it? Do you think that your age may have something to do with enjoying NA titles?

9 comments:

  1. I don't read much NA, but I probably read more than I am willing to admit. Some books kind of fall on the border and I consider them YA. Fangirl, for example, is sometimes considered NA. I'm older than you are, but I still prefer YA. Actually, I've started reading a lot more middle grade lately, so...

    My favorite NA author is Ginger Scott. I haven't read any Colleen Hoover yet, but I want to.

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    1. Yeah, definitely! There are a lot of really good Middle Grade lit coming out in the last 5 years, and I've loved it! Brandon Mull has been one of my favorites recently.

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  2. At my age, I'm beyond NA. I'm way beyond YA... but I still prefer it overall. I think part of my problem with NA is that it's still mostly in the contemporary genre, whereas my preferred genres usually have fantasy or paranormal elements. That might change, though, as more authors write NA.

    If I think back, I can remember a time when YA kind of had sort of the same problem as NA does now. Most of the YA books were contemporary. It was a big deal when stuff like Blood and Chocolate or The Vampire Diaries started becoming popular. So much of the paranormal and fantasy stuff back then (like the 1990s and earlier) was for middle graders. Maybe the idea was that young adults were supposed to be past such "silliness". And look at the YA offerings now! The same thing may happen with NA in the future; it'll get more diverse as far as genres go, and a lot more people will be reading it.

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    1. Oh man, I forgot about Blood and Chocolate. Yeah, that was a big deal. I hope what you say comes to fruition. I personally, think it's on its way because I'm starting to see other types of genres filtering through NA. :)

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    2. I totally agree. I'm so past YA age. But as a mom I can probably relate to YA more than to NA. And I agree that if NA is going to stand the test of time, it needs to expand beyond the "two broken people who find sexual healing" themes.
      Great topic!
      Jen @ YA Romantics

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  3. I like YA better than NA. I have mostly tried NA books in Swedish. The problem with NA books is that they often have very good titles like Vi är inte sådana som I slutet får varandra (the title is from a song by Håkan Hellström and a translation would be We are not the types who gets each other in the end) and Vi måste sluta ses på det här sättet (We have to stop seeing each other like this), but sadly the books have a boring story. And there is nothing worse than a book with a good title and a boring story!

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    1. Ah that's a bummer. I've picked up so many books that have intriguing titles, but they just end up falling flat. It's a total downer. I do know that though NA is becoming a genre all on its own, there are some "Adult" books that cover the age group before NA became a thing. Maybe that will help you find some good books to read in Sweden?

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  4. I still very much love YA, but I've been branching out into NA and enjoying it, also. I do think my age might have something to do with it - there are just some things in NA that I can identify with more since I'm part of that age group right now.

    For example, I really identified with Allyson in Gayle Forman's Just One Day. I know that book is generally lumped in with YA since that's what Gayle Forman is known for, but to me, that's what NA should be all about - finding yourself now that you're on your own and you have that freedom. Watching Allyson become more confident and figure out what she wants out of life is exactly what I went through when I was in college.

    I also really recommend Easy by Tammara Webber and Faking It by Cora Carmack if you haven't tried those yet :)

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    1. Yeah! I'm glad I'm not alone in this! It's such a new things to me though. I really haven't read a whole ton... maybe 5-8 NA books in all, because I obviously love YA lit so much... but sometimes it's just not the same.

      I actually have never read any of Gayle Forman's work, but I've heard nothing but good things -even from my co-blogger! I really need to get on that! I've also heard of Cora Carmack, but I've never read anything by her. I'll make sure to add Easy and Faking It to my TBR pile! Thanks so much for the recommendations! :)

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