It started with an article in the Wall Street Journal: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303657404576357622592697038.html?mod=e2tw
A curiously inflammatory, view count boosting article. Essentially, it bemoans the “darkness” of current YA literature, and puts forth the view that teenagers should be reading happy fluffy stories about flowers and unicorns, lest the get dangerous ideas about how the world really works and become atheists or something.
*cough* Sorry. I get worked up over the HappyBookers.
It also says flat out that if parents ask for books to be removed from shelves in libraries and bookstores, they should be commended for showing “good taste” rather than called censors.
Sorry WSJ. I’ll keep calling them censors. Because they can display good taste all they want and not buy, not read, and keep away from their children all the books they want. But the minute they try to keep them away from everyone, is when I will call it like it is. You keep information from me or anyone else, and I get cranky.
Young adult literature kept me sane as a teenager. The darkness of the stories told me that I wasn’t alone in feeling the ways I felt, and that terrible things could happen and you could still pull through. That people survived the worst, and more, without becoming irreparably broken. To feed me stories of Dick, Jane, and their dog Spot, would have been to condemn me to a life of sadness and hopelessness.
tl;dr…if you don’t like a book, don’t read it. If you want some suggestions of books you DO like, ask a librarian.
P.S. To see the Twitter awesomeness that has descended from this article, check out the hashtag #YAsaves. It came to my attention from @neilhimself, and I know @libbabray has been publicizing it too, as well as @cleolinda.