Thursday, April 12, 2012
I learned a long time ago that life often introduces young people to situations they are in no way prepared for, even good girls, lucky girls who want for nothing. Sometimes, when you least expect it, you become the girl in the woods. You lose your name because another one is forced on you. You think you are alone until you find books about girls like you. Salvation is certainly among the reasons I read. Reading and writing have always pulled me out of the darkest experiences in my life. Stories have given me a place in which to lose myself. They have allowed me to remember. They have allowed me to forget. They have allowed me to imagine different endings and better possible worlds.

From Roxane Gay’s superb, truly incredible essay on strength, stories, and the Hunger Games. (via mollitudo)

Read this.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Chris Columbus to Co-Author YA Fantasy Series

Co-authored by Director Chris Columbus’ (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets) and Ned Vizzini, House of Secrets is set to be the first in a trilogy.  The setup is as follows:

The Pagett kids had it all: loving parents, a big house in San Francisco, all the latest video games … But everything changed when their father lost his job as a result of an inexplicable transgression. Now the family is moving into Kristoff House, a mysterious place built nearly a century earlier by a troubled fantasy writer with a penchant for the occult. Suddenly the siblings find themselves launched on an epic journey into a mash-up world born of Kristoff’s dangerous imagination, to retrieve a dark book of untold power, uncover the Pagett family’s secret history and save their parents … and maybe even the world.

Columbus had this to add on his foray into literature:

The thing that Ned and I both wanted to do anything we can do to get kids back into reading and make it really, really fun. I’m not presumptuous enough to say, “We’re going to take over the Potter series,” but I got to see firsthand how that series affected kids and how it got so many hundreds of thousands of kids into reading. You hope for just a section of that in terms of being able to inspire kids to read. And that’s really one of the themes of the book – that reading is essential to your development as a child and as an eventual adult.

(Source: shelf-life.ew.com)

Sunday, November 20, 2011
When a saga popular with pre-adolescent girls peaks romantically on a night that leaves the heroine to wake up covered with bruises in the shape of her husband’s hands — and when that heroine then spends the morning explaining to her husband that she’s incredibly happy even though he injured her, and that it’s not his fault because she understands he couldn’t help it in light of the depth of his passion — that’s profoundly irresponsible…Romanticizing an intimate relationship that leaves bruises and scars is a particularly terrible idea in a film aimed at girls. Talking about this is tiresome, but then so is putting it in the movie. From depicting the loss of virginity as a naturally violent, frightening, physically dangerous experience to making Bella a woman with no life at all outside of her literally all-consuming pregnancy, the narrative sledgehammers are all as distasteful as they are inelegant. Linda Holmes, NPR

(Source: NPR)

Thursday, September 8, 2011
Julie Cross’ debut YA novel Tempest is already generating good buzz.  The book won’t be hitting shelves until January 3rd, but you can preview the first four chapters here.  The story follows Jackson Meyer, a “cocky, time-shifting 19-year-old protagonist [who] doesn’t understand the rules himself, and is struggling to figure out this strange, apparently instinctive power — though, like most kids that age, he’s not all that serious about his potential until trouble strikes.”

Julie Cross’ debut YA novel Tempest is already generating good buzz.  The book won’t be hitting shelves until January 3rd, but you can preview the first four chapters here.  The story follows Jackson Meyer, a “cocky, time-shifting 19-year-old protagonist [who] doesn’t understand the rules himself, and is struggling to figure out this strange, apparently instinctive power — though, like most kids that age, he’s not all that serious about his potential until trouble strikes.”

Wednesday, June 8, 2011
Even for parents acting with regard to their own kids, the act of one human being actually preventing another human being from reading a book is a grave decision.

Linda Holmes, Seeing Teenagers As We Wish They Were: The Debate Over YA Fiction

Read the rest of this very interesting article here.