Armchair BEA Day 5: Let's Talk Children's/Young Adult Literature

June 1, 2013

Design Credit to Nine of Nine Reads

Young Adult Literature

I almost forgot to write this post today! And it's my favourite topic!

Okay, so being a young adult myself, YA literature naturally appeals to me. But not only for that reason. Before I get into them, I thought I'll tell you a little (I'll keep it little, really) bit about my history with Young Adult lit.

About 5 years ago, I discovered Goodreads. That was when I read all of L M Montgomery's, Jane Austen's, L M Alcott's, and several more authors' complete works from Gutenberg. And then while exploring around, I found several YA books (though I didn't know that was what it was called) and loved them all. I would check them out at the Top ___ lists that are found on Goodreads. But then, slowly, I found myself disliking some of the books I found there, even the ones with good reviews. That was when I realised that even Goodreads reviews and ratings are not always reliable (taste differs, I get it). After the same thing happened with a number of YA books, I gave up on the genre. I didnt touch another YA book for atleast 4 years.

And then, last year, soon after I joined college, I met Pooja of On Books! (I'm sure you all already know this story, since I've told it so many times!) and she re-introduced me to Young Adult fiction, for which I will be ever grateful to her :)

YA has quickly become my favourite genre. Why? Well, like I said earlier, I can relate to a lot of it. Moreover, it's not mostly serious and highly complex and obscure stuff like a lot of adult literature. I'm not saying that all of them are like that (I do read my fair share of adult lit), but many are. And neither am I saying that YA books are not complex (God knows that the Dystopian books, for eg, are not!). But YA has this certain focus on a particular situation, and oftentimes, a high emotional intensity, that has you hooked to it, even if it's a story of a very ordinary girl. The characters are relatable, the language is easily understood... Do I really need to state any more reasons for loving this genre?

Okay, I will.

YA books are also extremely creative. Just when you think every possible version of a vampire is thought up, pop comes another. And most of them are good. With several sub genres - dystopian, realistic, paranormal, supernatural, fantasy, etc. there's no lack of imagination in this genre, and that's something I absolutely adore about this!

And now... Listing time! I'll try keeping it short this time, really :)

Top 10 13 Ever (I really cant confine to 10!)
I've only included contemporary works in this list. I just realised that there were a lot of wonderful classics that I for got to mention in my Day 1 post on Classics. But you can find some of them in my sidebar, under 'Bookshelf'.

1. Harry Potter series by J K Rowling
2. Inheritance Cycle by Christopher Paolini
3. The Host by Stephanie Meyer
4. Hopeless by Colleen Hoover
5. The Sea of Tranquility by Katja Millay
6. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
7. Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
8. Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
9. Just Listen by Sarah Dessen
9. Flat Out Love by Jessica Park
10. On The Islamd by Tracy Garvis-Graves
11. Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
12. Pushing The Limits by Katie McGarry
13. Vain by Fisher Amelie

Top 5 Dystopian
I haven't read The 5th Wave yet, but from the rave reviews, I'm sure it would be somewhere on this list for sure.

1. Matched Trilogy by Ally Condie
2. Divergent Trilogy by Veronica Roth
3. Delirium Trilogy by Lauren Oliver
4. Under The Never Sky Trilogy by Veronica Rossi
5. Gravity books by Melissa West

Authors I Recommend
These are some of my very favourite YA authors, and you can pick up any book of theirs and be sure you'll like it (provided we share the same taste in books :)

1. J K Rowling
2. Sarah Dessen
3. Colleen Hoover
4.  Katie McGarry
5. Lauren Oliver
6. Rainbow Rowell

See? Three lists isn't too bad, is it? I actually thought of doing another one for series, but hen squelched it :)

Children's Literature

I dont read much children's fiction. But the few that I read, are usually highly recommended ones. Here's a list of what I've read. You can see if you like any of them.

1. Wonder by R J Palacio (read it, really! It's like a John Green book for middle graders!)
2. The Curious Incident of The Dog in The Night-Time by Mark Haddon
3. Twerp by Mark Goldblatt

 P.S.: There seems to be some kind of problem with the Discus comment thingy, and I'm unable to view & reply to a few comments, though I can see them on the Blogger Comments tab. If I haven't responded to your comment, I will do so as soon as this gets cleared up :)

P.P.S.: I've classified the above books as YA and Children's based on their Goodreads tags. However, I do seem to have made a mistake with The Sea of Tranquility, which is New Adult. I get mixed up between the two sometimes!


  1. Great lists! I haven't read any of the dystopian books you shared but will have to give them a read soon.

    Just read Sea of Tranquility and loved it. Completely forgot to include that one in my list.

    1. Do read them! They're all great books!
      Lol yeah that happened to me as well, I'm just realising now :)

  2. I heard that Sea of Tranquility is a new adult novel, at least that's what other bloggers are saying, although I haven't read it yet.
    The 5th Wave isn't a dystopian novel, it's either an apocalyptic or a post apocalyptic novel, it's not a dystopian novel because the government aren't the bad guys like they are in dystopia. Apparently people always get these two genres mixed up.
    Anyways, great list.

    -Nazish @ Nazish Reads

    1. Actually, Nazish, dystopian books dont necessarily have to have bad governments. Wikipedia says dystopia is - 'A dystopia is a community or society, usually fictional, that is in some important way undesirable or frightening.'
      And yes, I'm aware of Sea of Tranquility being classified as New Adult as well, but when I read it, I found it from the Young Adult page on Goodreads. It's classified as both actually, YA and NA. But I probably should've put it under NA :)

  3. These are some great lists. I have Harry Potter on my list too and I do feel that these books have been very important in getting/keeping the youngsters reading.

    I finished The Sea of Tranquility last weekend and totally loved it.

    1. You're right there, Ciska!

      I'm glad you liked it! I loved it too! :D

  4. Great lists! I haven't read a lot of YA, not compared to most bloggers anyway, but I almost always enjoy the books I do read. I love that perpetually air of hope, even in the bleakest and saddest of stories.

    my Chldren's literature post

    1. Oh, I havent read many either, Kayleigh, but I love them too! And I know what you mean! That's one of my favourite things about the genre :D

  5. I see quite a few of my favorite YA on your list. I want to read the Veronica Rossi trilogy!

    1. Yay! We share similar tastes! :D
      You should totally read it. They're great!

  6. Thanks for sharing your lists! I read The Host and loved it! :-) Wasn't it intended for adults? I didn't know it was YA.

    I too have the Vampire Academy series and the Divergent trilogy on my favs list!

    I've been wanting to check out Veronica Rossi for I while now.

    Tamara @ Shelf Addicion

    Check out my Children’s to YA Literature post!

    1. I absolutely love that book! It's one of those that I keep returning to. Actually, it's classifed as YA in Goodreads. So I dont know :)

      I LOVED VA SO MUCH TOO! But I dont know how I feel about the movie...

  7. I have Sea of Tranquility! I didn't realize it's YA. Several people have recommended "The Fault in Our Stars," to me recently - guess it's kismet. Need to pick it up! Thanks for the suggestions.

    1. Lol yeah, Sea of Tranquility is probably NA, but it's also tagged as YA in GR :)

      You should totallt read TFIOS! I postponed reading it for so long, and then when I read it, I fell for the book. <3

  8. I'm not a YA myself, but I love this genre! :) The fault in our stars is SO good and of course Harry Potter <3 I really like the Divergent series and I can't wait to get started in VA.


    1. Haha A lot of readers of YA aren't really YA. I think I'll still be reading YA when I'm old :)

  9. Love all three of your children lit pics and...have not read Under the Never Sky. Really hoping to fix that this summer.

    1. Thanks Deb :) Yep, there are so many books I hope to read this summer too.


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