We Love YA: Maria

In We love YA!, a fellow YA-lover is featured and is asked to answer the following questions: Why do you love YA? What are some of your favorite YA books? What can you say to encourage other people to read YA? At end of which, readers are requested to recommend books based on the featured person’s answers.

In lieu of a Want Books post today, I thought I’d do a We Love YA post instead since I haven’t done this in a while. If you haven’t seen the other We Love YA features, feel free to check them out here. Today, Maria of Wings of Daedalus has been kind enough to answer YA-related questions. Maria is a full-time grad student, a food quality backup supervisor by night and the keeper of three goblins by day (they look remarkably like kids but don’t be fooled by their appearances). Sounds like a lot to handle, right? When she has time for herself, Maria enjoys reading, writing and video gaming. Let’s give it up for Maria! πŸ™‚

Why do you love YA?
I’ll give a little bit of background first: I was introduced to the young adult genre when I was writing a a novel considered young adult fiction. I read some YA books in order to get a feel for the market and what types of books were out there. Once I found out though by reading a couple, I’ve never looked back! I devour these books like kids with candy – inseparable!

Why do I love YA? Too many reasons to list here but I will list the ones that come to my mind first.

Young adult fiction is fresh, bold, honest, and sexy. It’s like breathing in sunshine. These books push the social conventions that adult fiction sometimes skirt around. I partly believe this is due to the fact that teenagers are very curious creatures and they like to dabble in almost everything. They don’t resolve themselves to a life of quiet desperation. They live in a blaze of glory! Teenagers are imbued with an unquenchable passion, a drop of which could set this world on fire.

I love YA literature because the words are honest and heart-felt. The characters are so complex and driven. Since they are teenagers, they are raw, untapped reservoirs of sexual tension, insecurity, stubbornness, curiosity, and emotion. They just… they seem to feel more. And when that is described well in a story, it is like the roller-coaster ride of my life: it makes me cry, laugh, dance, sigh longingly, and reminiscence all in a span of a few hours. I believe this gets lost in translation over in adult fiction.

Why do I love YA? The worlds are vivid. They pop out like accents of color in a grey world.

YA literature is entertaining, fast, and addictive. You can’t just read one. It’s like having a box of chocolates: delectable and dribbling with temptation.

What are some of your favorite books/series/authors?
Hmmm… this is very difficult! Some of my favorite YA books include The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins, Into the Wild Nerd Yonder by Julie Halpern, The Uglies Trilogy by Scott Westerfeld, The Maze Runner by James Dashner, Fallen by Lauren Kate, If I Stay by Gayle Forman, A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray, Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer, and the Percy Jackson series by Rick Riordan.

As you can see, I’m all over the board!

What can you say to encourage other people to read YA?
See question “Why I Love YA” and that should speak for itself πŸ™‚ !


Thanks for those very insightful answers, Maria! Keep us posted on that YA novel that you’re writing! I love how you described YA books. I never would have come up with such a creative description but it describes perfectly how I feel about the genre. YA is indeed vivid and so full of varied emotions. The novels feel so alive because of this, the words feel like they jump out at you from the page.

Now that we’ve established our mutual love of the genre, I’d like to make a couple of recommendations. It seems like you’ve read so many different YA books! I know that The Hunger Games trilogy sometimes go hand in hand with Kristin Cashore’s Graceling and Fire so I have a feeling you’ve read those as well. Because it seems like you’re willing to try different YA books, I want to recommend one of my favorite YA series of all time – the Queen’s Thief series by Megan Whalen Turner, starting with The Thief. Also I haven’t read If I Stay but I feel like it’s kind of similar to Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver, which I loved.

What about you, dear readers, what are some of the books that you’d recommend for Maria? πŸ™‚ What do you think of her description of the YA genre?

8 thoughts on “We Love YA: Maria

  1. Once again, thank you for accepting my request, Chachic! Funny you should mention the book Before I Fall…hehee…I just purchased that book a little over a couple weeks ago. I have not heard of The Queen Thief series so I’m definitely going to check that series out πŸ™‚ !

    • Thanks for wanting to be featured and giving such great answers. πŸ™‚ Oh I’m glad you purchased Before I Fall because I really loved that one. If you want more contemporary YA fiction, I also recommend Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta and Going Too Far by Jennifer Echols. πŸ™‚ My review of the Queen’s Thief series is here if you want to find out more about it.

  2. I agree about the energy and freshness we often find in YA. That is why I wrote my first novel series with a teenageer as the main character. It’s three books, covering her ages 15, 16, and 17. Those interested may find out about it by going to my blog. Thanks!

  3. @Maria, Susan Beth Pfeifer was one my favorite authors when I was a kid. I think she wrote the book Kid Power and I think that’s when I learned about being entrepreneurial πŸ˜€

    I agree with Chachic that you should try Fire and Graceling by Kristin Cashore. Chachic recommended them to me too, and it’s been in my favorites ever since!

    • Oooh Evert, you know Susan Beth Pfeffer! I’ve never read any of her books. If you ever give her dystopian books a try, let me know what you think of them.

  4. Yes YA books are honest, heartfelt, mystery, and emotions. Try also The City of Ember (Books of Ember) by Jeanne DuPrau, Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater, Fallen by Lauren Kate.

    • Thanks for the suggestions! I’m sure Maria will appreciate them. The only book I’ve read from your recommendations is Shiver and I agree that it’s a good book. πŸ™‚

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