YA doesn’t have to be dirty

This article was circulating Facebook, and apparently it’s very controversial. The case for good children’s books.

Why is it controversial?

She postulates that the young adult genre, usually aimed at kids 12-15, shouldn’t be filled with abuse, sex and rape.


She says that by allowing the genre to become filled with garbage, we are normalizing garbage.


She points out that the first person present tense books currently in vogue stick kids in the present and never lets them look to the future. In fact, many of these books present the teen experience as all there is.

Also, beauty has been removed. By and large, YA is gritty and dirty and dark. Our culture shuns beauty. If you do meet beauty, its a vampire who wants to kill you.

For me, this was such a breath of fresh air! Finally, someone speaking up about how nasty YA is! I have a hard time reading it for exactly that reason. I’d rather read middle grade where there’s usually some adventure involved and we don’t have to bother with sex.

I’ve worried for a whole that Spacetime wasn’t gritty enough for YA. It’s just good, clean fun, the way I’ve always written. I don’t really want to smut it up because that’s not my vision for the series. Also the teen characters grow up a little each book until they’re adults by the end. Isn’t that what teens want? The freedom and autonomy of an adult? Shoot, I did.

Apparently this is a hugely controversial topic. Lots of people whining about how much they love dirty teen stories and teens need to read garbage to make them mature.

Seriously, people? There’s more to life than sex and teens need to know that, of all people.

2 thoughts on “YA doesn’t have to be dirty

  1. I loved that article, and honestly, I think it could apply to a lot more than just “teen books.” “Classic” literature falls into the same pitfalls.

    I think I’m feeling a blog post come on…


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