There’s a growing trend in young adult (YA) fiction: more and more of
the readers are grown-ups dabbling in Neverland. While it’s clear that reading
childhood favorites can bring us back to the past’s glory days, it’s a little
less certain why bunches of adults are diving into the teen section at Barnes
& Noble. Cosmopolitan asked
author John Green what he thinks is behind the trend. Here is an excerpt of the
“For me, writing a book is like a very long version of that childhood
game Marco Polo. I sit alone in my basement for a few years saying,
"Marco, Marco, Marco, Marco," and then finally the book comes out.
And if I'm lucky, people start saying, "Polo!" When writing my novel
The Fault in Our Stars, I always imagined those people would be teenagers. My
books are for young adults, after all.
But in the weeks after The Fault in Our Stars was published in 2012, I
heard from more and more proper adults. They told me their kids had given them
the book or they'd read it in book club or their friends had recommended it.
Suddenly, the vast majority of my readers were grown-ups.
Ever since, I've been thinking about why stories about teenagers
resonate so much with us as adults. I've been a passionate adult reader of YA
fiction for a decade, and what I find so compelling about the best YA fiction
is its unironic emotional honesty. When you're a teenager, you're often doing
so many important things for the first time — everything from falling in love
to grappling with heartache and loss. You also begin to ask the big questions
of humanness: What, if anything, is the meaning to all this? What are my
responsibilities to myself and to others?”
the rest of John’s incredibly thoughtful and honest essay at Cosmopolitan.com
BY BRITTANY TAYLOR ON 5/8/2014 12:00:00 AM