It's quite possible I am, because I have absolutely no interest in books featuring characters too far in age or circumstance unrelated to my own. My friends at university will talk about a brilliant story about a lady that does blah blah blah and all I can think is that I really don't care.
Maybe I'm some kind of hybrid live-in-the-moment type, because for as far as I can remember, I read books about people in my age range. I always read a little higher, because the arrogant 'mature' asshole that I am, but not too far. So far, it has worked for me. I read about middle school while in elementary school, high school while in middle school, and yet this chain broke when it came to college because I struggled to find any book about the college experience that contained the same enchantment of YA.
This could explain my recent obsession with fantasy. In fantasy worlds, people are my age, and yet they do not live in my system. I don't need to read about high school, a period of my life that I actually enjoyed, but that I'm over. I don't know how to find books about college that are about magic and fun and saving the world, not about sex and romance.
I suppose the latter are important parts of this age, but I would like to see that they exist along with a whole new variety of books.
Maybe these books exist, and I don't know about them. I would like that to be true.
College has been an experience that, for the most part, I have lived rather than read about. It is awesome and scary, and yet the personal growth college demands has been so extraordinary and above anything else. It also means that to read about college, beyond some Gossip Girl type stories of debauchery (which I have nothing against, btw), I have to brave the adult section.
Fun fact: I have never braved the adult section. I've walked into the adult section and picked up a book I heard about in the YA world, but I've never actually looked at adult books and felt like I belong.
It's weird, this concept of an adult section. There are picture books, and MG, and YA, and all of these ideally cover less than a decade of life with the stories about these age ranges, or the themes prevalent in them. And then there's the adult section, which covers everyone else.
That is terrifying. It is utterly terrifying. How am I supposed to know where to look for the books I want to read?
|This could plausibly call for an emergency phone call to Mari. Credit to acklesdean from Tumblr!|
The teen section at my library is about three or four large bookcases. It is one of the better selection of books in the city, and I love it. And the adult section is probably larger than ten times this amount of books, and it is so incredibly daunting for someone simply trying to read more fantasies and urban stuff about people in their late teens or early twenties.
It's probably part of the reconciliation process of growing up to realize that there are people that will inevitably begin to have children and that's an important part of their lives, but as it stands, I can't imagine reading a book about having a child. I know those books exist in YA too, and I have avoided them. I also can't imagine reading about marriage as the major plot, because I'm jaded, and because that, again, feels so far away.
It was at this moment, staring at the shelves upon shelves of books designated for adults that I realized how much I need new adult. And by that, I mean that I need new adult to be about new adults. I want fantasies with new adults (Oh my god, thank you Sarah J. Maas), and I want paranormals. I want us to go to space. I want to read about internships, and oh my god a magical university, can you imagine it?
This is not me leaving YA. I am as addicted as ever to stories of magic and intrigue, and I still read about older teens. Like, I'm 18. I'm not a dinosaur.
I'm just enchanted with the excitement of being 18, and knowing that anything can happen, and getting a real taste of independence, and the fear and excitement all this brings. I think the sense of possibility, of coming into your own when you are 18, of the world expanding and contracting depending on your mood that day, when you realize your decisions have consequences, and you start to realize that you can actually make it, when you stop dreaming about who you will be and start deciding who you are, well, the romantic in me loves this.
I want these stories, and I don't know how to find them. Please help me and recommend books you recommend for eighteen year olds, or about college-aged people.