My Photo
Location: Vero Beach, Florida, United States

My name is Pat and I live in Florida. My skin will never be smooth again and my hair will never see color. I enjoy collecting autographs and playing in Paint Shop Pro.,along with reading and writing. Sometimes, I enjoy myself by doing volunteer "work" helping celebrities at autograph shows. I love animals and at one time I did volunteer work for Tippi Hedren's Shambala Preserve.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Bunnies and Bilbo

First things first: Happy Easter!!

And for a repeat of my very own "memory" Easter Story.. click here.

After that... I got to thinking yesterday (not easy when I still can't breath!) and wrote a little something below.


In the beginning.. there was Bilbo Baggins, The Hobbit.

Of course, way back when (in the beginning) Bilbo didn't look like Ian Holm..

He didn't look like the cartoon version either. Because back then there was only, ....the book!

To the best of my recollection (which I will admit isn't the greatest) the first Fantasy Fiction book that I read (that I recall) was : The Hobbit.

So it is safe for me to say that JRR Tolkien did me a really huge favor, because: due to his fabulous writing I was swept up and taken on a journey that would last the rest of my life!

So, my introduction, as it were, was not just into fantasy fiction but into what they call "high fantasy". The ol' good against evil, with wars beyond the imagination. The good were very very good, and the bad were horrid. (gee, I've heard that saying before haven't I?)

For much of my life the reading I've enjoyed the most was all fairly similar. Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickmans Dragonlance series, Terry Brooks Shannara series, Stephen R Donaldsons Thomas Covenant series & David Eddings Belgariad series. All high fantasy. (all wonderful reads that hold up even today)

Recently, maybe because I had my temporary fill of high fantasy (or rather I felt I had the best of the best and to keep reading the same over and over by other authors: although they are probably every bit as good as who I had read) I found myself buying more and more YA books.

I've pondered this fact a number of times.

Why have I gone to young adult books?

Is it because I find no other high fantasy authors that I like?

Is it because I missed out on these sort of authors when I was young??

Or are these authors actually better than the newer adult authors??

Or is it that there are more story lines available to the YA authors??

I am still contemplating these questions... along with others.

I do know I've been enjoying a number of YA authors of late.

Cornelia Funke

Jonathan Stroud

James A Owen

Angie Sage

Brandon Mull

Obert Skye

And this is just the tip of the iceberg!

It's not as if there weren't good writers for young folks when I was young (even if they did have to carve them in stone!).. but they must have been far and few between because I sure don't remember authors like these when I was a kid... or so many!!

There may be some things in the future that won't be all that good... but I do believe that the youth of today is surely not without great YA writers!!

So.. I was wondering...

Why do you think adults seem to be reading so many YA books???


Blogger animewookie said...

I've read most of these books myself and thoroughly enjoyed them. Now, I could use the fact that I have kids as an excuse to buy them, but when it comes down to it, they're just wonderful, well written stories. I love authors that don't underestimate the intelligence of children. Quite honestly, I think they get enough of that in school.

9:53 AM  
Blogger Kailana said...

It's funny. When I was a young adult, I hardly ever read young adult books. I sort of skipped from youth to adult without really exploring the things in between. Part of that was reading level. I know that I would try and read books for my age group for school and my teachers would frankly tell me that I needed to read something more advanced. So, I started reading more advanced books and sort of just left the other stuff behind. The only young adult author that I really remember when I was a kid was Madeleine L'Engle. I read A Wrinkle in Time, loved it, so I read all the books I could find by her and all of her adult books. I suppose for me, I am reading young adult now because I didn't read them when I was a young adult.

1:57 PM  
Blogger Rhinoa said...

I want to read all of those series! I am not sure why I love teenage fiction books, I still think I am a teenager is certainly part of it! I am 28 now and am convinced I am 17 still... I always make sure I go to the teenage fiction section in bookshops as they seem to be all the best books. I am not sure why, I just know there is always soemthing new that catches my eye.

6:16 PM  
Blogger DesLily said...

animewookie: maybe schools should give kids a bit more choice on what they want to read. (other than what they have to of course)

Kailana: I think I am too lol that and they never had so many good things to read w hen I was young

rhinoa: You're close enough to count as a teenager to me! LOL LOL.. Have you not read any of the ones I pictured??

6:23 PM  
Blogger Nymeth said...

First of all, a very Happy Easter for you too!

That is a good question...I'm not quite sure why I am so drawn to children's and YA books. I like Rhinoa's idea of it being because we're still young at heart :P

One thing I do like is the fact that a good book for younger readers can be read on so many different often says as much as a good adult book, but it says things with more subtlety. I also like how those books are always concerned with telling a good, engaging story, which is something that is sometimes thought of as secondary when it comes to adult fiction.

6:47 PM  
Blogger DesLily said...

Nymeth: Well, YA books still have much of "life's lessons".. and maybe as adults we still haven't learned them.. or learned them well? I think adult books either have excellent characters or an excellent story, but seldom have both at the same time, but when they get it right.. it's really good lol.. I do love when a YA book is written so well that you forget you are dealing with "youngsters".. not that th ey should make adult choices, but it's written in an adult manner I guess.

7:18 PM  
Blogger Chris said...

Happy Easter Pat! I think that there are just as many good adult authors as young adult authors, but I think what makes young adult authors so successful is that all they really focus on is telling a good story! They don't get lost in this trap of trying to make the book "literary" or making sure there are these twisted plots and sex scenes, etc...they just give you a good old fashioned "once upon a time" story. Like The Hobbit! Which, speaking of, was one of my first forays into fantasy as well. It really sealed the deal for me!

11:04 PM  
Blogger DesLily said...

Chris: I do believe the Hobbit caught many people unprepared for what they were about to read lol.. I think after finding out what a Hobbit was I began shaving the top of my feet along with my legs lol lol

6:33 AM  
Blogger Darla D said...

I often wonder the same thing, Deslily, especially since I spend so much of my reading time with children's and YA books. I think that in many ways these books take greater risks than books for adults. Kids are not in the rut where they say, "I only read mysteries/legal thrillers/serious literature." They pick up a book that looks good and give it a try. I find books for kids to be, on the whole, better written, more surprising, fun, and compelling than books for adults. Or maybe some part of me just hasn't grown up yet...

11:05 AM  
Blogger Cath said...

I've been thinking about this for ages and still not really come up with an answer. I think maybe those of us who read a lot of YA fiction are quite young at heart though. We haven't forgotten what it was like to want to read about witches and wizards and frightening monsters. And YA authors go to places that writers of adult fantasy tend not go. Also they don't tend to be demanding reads and sometimes that's just what you want along with some pure escapism. I don't know... I just think that we're perhaps slightly different to readers who just read crime, or just read chick lit or whatever. I didn't read The Hobbit until I was about 17 so it wasn't my first fantasy read. I think Narnia night have been but I'm not certain now. I haven't looked back anyway and YA fantasy and adult fantasy still makes up a large proportion of my reading matter.

4:08 PM  
Blogger DesLily said...

darlad: I think YA (kids) are more open to read more things.. but I also think that YA (young adults) are under many pressures that they too wish to escape from..?

Hi Cath: Well.. I probably read some sort of fantasy before the Hobbit (I was out of HS when I read the Hobbit) but I can't say any made me into the "reader" I am today .. that was the love of reading that came from Tolkien for me.

4:13 PM  
Blogger Booklogged said...

First of all, HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Deslily. Many happy returns on your day.

I definitely think there are more good YA novels than there used to be. I am enjoying so many of them even tho I'm rounding the top of the hill, age-wise.

7:18 PM  
Blogger DesLily said...

thanks booklogged.. I think I'm just surprised at how many adults read YA (me included)

7:50 PM  
Blogger OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

As you probanly know, Pat....I have never read any of these books....! But I wanted to thank you for your Easter Wishes and just say, I hope your Easter was a lovely one. Mine was very quiet and in fact, just like any other Sunday, this year...Which was fine by me.
I LOVED looking at last years Easter Flowers and am happy they gave other people a lift, too!

8:11 PM  
Blogger Kim L said...

My personal theory is (and I'm speaking as someone who loves YA lit) that the YA audience is more picky than your typical adult audience. So the book has to catch your attention and be extra good in order to last in the YA market.

So there are a lot of really good YA books, and for the most part they can be appreciated by all ages.

11:04 PM  
Blogger Carl V. said...

I'm not sure it is anything but your desire to read good fiction that has put you on the YA path. There are so many great YA authors out there writing works that are every bit as enjoyable and emotional resonant as books written for adults. I think you would really be missing out if you weren't experiencing this category of fiction and I'm thrilled you have fallen for it because I get to pre-experience the books through your reviews!

1:38 AM  
Blogger Susan said...

Happy late birthday, happy late late Easter, Pat, I just found your blog and am enjoying it very much. Glad you asked this question, which is one I've asked: I read all the fantasy series you named, and they were good. Though, you forgot Robin Hobb's Apprentice series, which is amazing adult fantasy! - but why do we read YA now? I think it's the sense of adventure. If you think back to the Hobbit (Like you, my first foray into fantasy and it swept me happily away into a lifetime of reading fantas!), Bilbo (and then later Frodo, Sam, Merry and Pippin) are all YOUNGSTERS in the hobbit world - therefore ready for adventure. There are adult characters in Tolkiens's books, but the heroes are young.
I think, upon reflecting on Narnia series, Patricia McKillip's RiddleMaster of Hed series (marvelous books!), and all the newer writers, that it is a sense of wonder about YA fantasy novels - everything is new and possible in their eyes. Adult fiction is darker because, as some of your bloggers point out, adults know about the darker side of life, they've already had an adventure or two,and I think maybe there is more explaining then storytelling sometimes going on, because adults want to know how and why it works! Well, one theory anyway :-) and thanks for asking the question and making us think!! Now I have to go read some more Inkheart, and try to find some Shannon Hale here in Ottawa......but I've just thought of Jasper Fforde who blows my entire theory out of the water!!!! Isn't fantasy fun??? :-)

10:42 AM  
Blogger DesLily said...

welcome Susan! have you ever noticed that many books who have young people as the hero's that there is a very old sorcerer doing as much as the young ones!?!

11:17 AM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home