Friday, January 25, 2013

What is New Adult?

Have you heard of the genre New Adult? Up until a few weeks ago somehow I had missed the whole New Adult genre. It had me confused. Why was a new genre created? Just to make everything more confusing?

I decided to do some research.

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I've come to the conclusion that New Adult is like the bridge between Young Adult and Adult books.
"They’ve labeled this category “new adult” — which some winkingly describe as Harry Potter meets “50 Shades of Grey” — and say it is aimed at 18-to-25-year-olds, the age group right above young adult."

As I kept reading it basically said that the "goal" of this genre is to "retain" young readers that grew up reading the Harry Potter series, The Hunger Games, and Twilight. Interesting...does that mean I count? Since technically I grew up reading the Harry Potter series even though I'm not 18.

Apparently New Adult books are supposed to appeal to readers in the age group listed above that enjoyed those books because they are more mature (there's more intense romance and explicit sex).

Now this is what I was wondering about:
"While publishers like the concept of creating a new-adult category, its hybrid nature has been problematic. The books fall into an undefined territory between adult and children’s literature, and there is no obvious place for them in bookstores. Even within publishing houses, new-adult authors are being split between children’s and adult divisions."
You've probably heard of the book Easy by Tammara Webber. I've seen some pretty positive reviews on it so I went to my local Barnes & Noble to see if they had it. I couldn't find it in the Young Adult section so I kind of gave up and picked up something else. While walking around the store I spot Easy in the Adult section. I literally stood there for a few minutes looking at the books because along with Easy there was Stormdancer and Ironskin. Two other books I wanted to read but they were more expensive than the average Young Adult book. I knew that Easy wasn't exactly a Young Adult book but I had absolutely no idea that the other two weren't (according to the bookstore I went to). Where does the line between YA and New Adult and Adult get drawn? Is it closer to YA or Adult?

 

Why bookstore? Why not just put in a New Adult section to make everything less confusing! I don't have a problem with New Adult just the fact that there is no place for them in bookstores (yet?). Please make a special place for them because technically they aren't actually Adult books or YA books.
"Beyond appealing to the maturing tastes of young readers, these more sophisticated books could potentially draw in the millions of older readers who have flocked to the young-adult category, publishers said. A study released in September by Bowker, a market research firm that studies publishing trends, showed that more than half the buyers of young-adult books were 18 or older, and the vast majority said they were purchasing for themselves."
I've actually started to notice this. I'll be searching the shelves at Barnes & Noble and a person that is not a teenager will be looking at the same book that I just put down. Honestly I hope I'm like that person when I'm older. 

I actually think that New Adult is a pretty interesting and good idea because there are definitely a lot of readers from all different ages. I'll have to read a New Adult book sometime to see what it's like. 

Have you read a New Adult book? What are your thoughts on the new genre?

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4 comments:

Grace Ma said...

Wow, great informative post, Erika! I've heard of New Adult a couple of times these past few days, but I didn't pay much attention to it. Thanks for bringing me up to date!

-Grace :)

Erika A said...

Thanks! I feel like I'm hearing about New Adult more and more so I thought I'd do a post about it.

Annabel Roach said...

Awesome article! I had always wondered about New Adult. I don't think I'm going to read it, but I was always like, "What the heck?" when someone would mention New Adult. Love the gifs! :P

Erika A said...

Thanks! That's what I was like too.

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