Wednesday, July 31, 2013

New Adult: Pros and Cons

Hello everyone, it's the Intern! And I'm going to be discussing the pros and cons of the up and coming category "New Adult" named for people that are "new" to being "adults".

For those of you who don't know, New Adult is written for people 18-25ish since they are no longer adolescents but you could argue that they are not exactly adults either. It's like the purgatory between Young Adult and normal Fiction.

What sets NA apart from YA is the topics it covers. They contemplate leaving home for college, first actual jobs, roommates, sexuality, mature relationships, and discovering yourself without your parents to guide you.

And the sexuality part is probably the biggest difference. It's racier and could even be more explicit (not graphic, but not exactly fade-to-black-for-the-sexy-times either.) Which makes the category definitely more Adult than Young.

To get my opinion out of the way, I'm going to just say that I like the whole New Adult category. And I hope it continues to be a thing. But I will also go over the other side's equally valid view points.


One could argue that it's just a marketing ploy to try to get an even WIDER audience and try to sell more books that are in such a purgatory. And they could also ask why are they in such a purgatory? Can't they be limited to either YA or just A? You may not even hate New Adult itself, just when people try to limit books to one category when they can go across the board if they want.

Or you could be offended by the SEX ASPECT!1!

Sex has no place in anything anywhere. The fact that authors can even imply people aged 18-25 could have DONE that is just DESPICABLE. (This is my sarcastic side coming out since I can't take these kind of arguments seriously).


I think that anything that engages more readers is a good thing. If you can appeal to a new audience, then what's the harm? I also think that there is a distinct difference between people in high school and people in college and post-college and I think many plots that one could apply to one cannot be applied to the other.

Also, people forget that YA wasn't really a thing until a couple decades ago. And I, for one, am particularly excited to be apart of this upcoming category. I think there are a lot of ways people could write for it and there is a great hope for more books in this genre to come.

And if the potential sex aspect bothers you, don't read it. That simple.

So yes. Hip-hip hooray for YA and NA!

If you guys have any opinions, feel free to comment them down below.


Owyn the BBS Page

Monday, July 8, 2013

Vague Endings

Hello everyone! I hope you had a lovely Fourth of July weekend.

And I decided to kick off this week with a blog post about books that have vague endings.

There are two ways to do this: satisfying or infuriating.


The two books I'm going to compare for the sake of a visual are Megan Meade's Guide to the McGowan Boys and The Corner of Bitter and Sweet. The first being by Kate Brian and the latter being by Robin Palmer.

Brian's book is about a girl who moves into a house that is occupied by 7 boys because it was either that or move to Korea with her military parents. And there is drama, romance, and MOAR DRAMA. (Like the fact that one brother cheats with the other brother's girlfriend and that girlfriend tries to blame Megan when it wasn't Megan's fault.)

Palmer's book is about a girl named Annabelle who's mom, Janie, is an alcoholic TV star who decides to clean up her act and take better care of her daughter while Annabelle has been taking care of her most of the time. Also coupled with cute romantic moments between Janie and Billy then Annabelle and Matt.

You see, in Palmer's book the ending doesn't say anything finite. But there's this hopefulness to it. Two couples are brought together, there's a new precedence for how Annabelle and Janie are supposed to act together and it just gives you a nice "Aw there's nothing really set in stone but I feel satisfied with that ending thank you very much awesome author."



Ask my boss on twitter (@boulderbooks), I actually did this
I should probably explain my all caps rage. So in this book Megan has a slight crush on Evan but it's really more of an infatuation but then Megan starts to develop actual feelings for Finn and of course she does, Finn is amazing, but then things happen and then Megan leaves then she comes back and she has a moment with Finn and a slight one with Evan but BRIAN DOESN'T SAY WHO MEGAN ENDS UP WITH AND IT GIVES ME ISSUES.

Maybe some people are okay with not knowing but I am not. How. Dare. You. Brian.

So, personally, I prefer it if there's more of a happy-ending feel, because I didn't read your book to not get a happy ending. But I don't want an actual happy ending where every single string is tied and everything is all perky. I want realistic, but happy. So there could be a few loose ends, but at least have the couple together or the villain defeated or a hopeful outlook for that something to get fixed eventually. (Unless there's a sequel, then cover it in the sequel.)

But if the author just doesn't say something that seems vital to the denouement then I'm left feeling empty inside because HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO KNOW WHAT GOES ON IN YOUR BRAIN.

That's just my opinion. Leave yours in the comments!


Owyn the Intern

Monday, July 1, 2013

Plot Wars: Distance Between Us vs. This is What Happy Looks Like

And the Intern is back with another Plot Wars for you all!

The two books butting heads today are The Distance Between Us by Kasie West and This Is What Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith.

The Set Up:
  • The Distance Between Us is about a girl named Caymen who helps her poor mother run a porcelain doll shop that rich people frequent. Which is how she meets Xander, a rich boy who seems to understand her. But she knows from her mom's experience that the rich's interest doesn't last long, but that doesn't stop him from trying to get her attention.
  • This Is What Happy Looks Like is about teenage hearthrob Graham accidentally sending normal, Maine girl Ellie an email, which leads to a period of emails where they talk about everything (except for their names or backgrounds). So when Graham's new movie is shooting in her hometown, Graham decides to meet her. Even though Ellie has a secret that requires her to stay out of the spotlight. Will these factors keep them apart?
  • A difference in social class between the love interests
  • A girl with a dad that is not involved in her life (SPOILERS: highlight to see: the mom slept with a rich man and who then abandoned the mom during pregnancy )
  • A girl with a poor, working mom
  • Both girls help their mom in a shop
  • A best friend who is highly opinionated about the main girl's life and the rich man's intentions
  • A group of similarly-minded people who think the love interests shouldn't be together/try to keep them apart
  • The girl has no siblings
  • The male lead has a problem with his parents
  • Instead of being rich, Graham is famous (he's rich too, but that's not the defining factor)
  • There was more of a focus on the social-class differences with Caymen and Xander
  • Ellie's dad is a politician and Caymen's dad is just plain rich
  • Caymen's mom's shop is limited to dolls while Ellie's mom is a more general type of store
  • Some of Xander and Caymen's friends don't want him "slumming" with Caymen while it's the paparazzi make things difficult for Ellie and Graham
  • Ellie's not allowed to be in the spotlight because of her dad, and Caymen just doesn't want to deal with it
I don't know! They were both really well-written. It really just depends. The dialogue with Caymen and Xander is really dry and sarcastic, which made The Distance Between Us hilarious. But at the same time This Is What Happy Looks Like had an epistolary beginning (which are my favorite) with a shift in limited-third-person point of view. So it really comes down to what you prefer. But I liked them both.

Until later, readers!

Owyn the Intern

A/N: I also reviewed these on my personal YA book blog:
This Is What Happy Looks Like (WARNING the images don't work well and I don't know how to fix it. Sorry)