YA Reading Wishlist

January 21, 2014

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday asks what we would make authors write about if we had that power.  I have very strong opinions about this topic as you can see from how much I feature on the Reader/Blogger Wishlist tumblr. I mostly read YA lit, and I have a teenager who mostly reads YA lit, so I decided to devote my wishlist to what I want to see in YA lit.

I want to see the following:

  • books featuring middle class black teens as the main character(s)
  • teens struggling with anxiety or other mental illnessesTop Ten Tuesday
  • teens in recovery from alcoholism/addiction or who have friends/family members in recovery from alcoholism/addiction
  • nerdy/quirky teens who are not ashamed of their quirky/nerdy interests and don’t feel a need to breach the “popular” crowd (whatever that means)
  • nerd competitions such as Odyssey of the Mind, robotics clubs, math team, etc.
  • any kind of specialized summer camp (daughter attends Duke TIP, has friends that go to dance camp, theater camp, Boy Scouts/Girl Scouts camp, computer camp, etc.)
  • teens in Boy and/or Girl Scouts
  • involved parents
  • teens with non-visible or non-obvious disabilities
  • teens who try their best and fail
  • pregnant teens and teen parents
  • regular teens doing regular things (i.e., dealing with friend, family, and school drama)
  • teens that don’t live in the city but still live in apartments
  • teens whose parents aren’t rich or who aren’t the only “poor” teens in their school  (in quotation marks because ya lit poor isn’t usually real people poor)
  • teens whose parents are struggling with money so the teens can’t do everything they want to do
  • interracial adoption
  • religious teens/teens questioning religion (not just Christian, and I’m not talking about Christian fiction, which is its own genre)
  • teens that go on vacation and don’t have a romance

I want the books my daughter reads to reflect her reality, basically.

That’s way more than 10, I know, but I still feel like I missed some. Tell me, readers: what would you add to the list?

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5 Comments

  1. Words for Worms

    I love this list!!! I wouldn’t mind reading about a kid on a vacation that was like MY family vacations… Hanging out with family, reading, brooding… Wondering why there is no romance happening because books tell me it should but it never does because life isn’t really like that…

    Reply
  2. kathy

    I love your list! I usually stick to YA contemporaries because they feel more real. But they have a lot of the issues you mentioned… like being fake poor. Or vacation romance, lol. That never happened to me as a teen. 🙂

    Reply
    • Akilah

      Vacation romance is my number one reading resentment.

      And I almost exclusively read YA contemporaries, and they often suffer from lots of wish fulfillment.

      Reply
  3. trish422

    What a great list! Now hopefully some authors will take your advice.

    Reply

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