Why I Read YA Fiction

With the exception of psychological thrillers, the genre of books I read the most is without a doubt Young Adult fiction. I think my love for YA fiction began when I was much younger than a young adult, but then I always did read whatever I could get my hands on regardless of whether it was age appropriate (worst example of this being an 11-year-old me picking up and reading When the Wind Blows by James Patterson and giving myself nightmares for weeks afterwards…) I ploughed my way through Jacqueline Wilson, Louise Rennison, Ann Brashares and her Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants series. When I was a little bit older, I got into Sarah Dessen and her beautiful stories and hers are the ones that to this day I read over and over again. I went to Camp Half-Blood with Percy Jackson and Annabeth, Hogwarts with Harry Potter and the gang. I followed the unfortunate events which befell the Baudelaire siblings all the while developing a love for a genre of fiction that even to this day rests incredibly close to my heart.

I actually get quite offended when people say I’m too old to be reading Young Adult fiction. I get haughty when the staff in Waterstones give me weird looks when they see me perusing amongst the YA shelves. I am 22 years old. I’m far from being an “old” adult. I would say I am still a young adult. I’ve read articles which tell me that, as a 22-year-old, I should be embarrassed to be reading books intended for younger people, but I honestly don’t see how this is an issue. Quite frankly, even if I was an “older adult” I’d probably still read YA fiction. Young Adult fiction is beautiful in a way which contemporary adult fiction isn’t able to be. It’s important to generations worth of people, including my own and it is important in the sense that it makes me happy: and as far as I’m concerned, reading books which make me happy is the most important thing of all. I don’t read to appeal to other people’s expectations and I never will.

I read for me and I read YA.