We are in the midst of the largest teenage population boom since the nineteen sixties, and all of the media are scrambling to reach this alert, savvy, wealthy, and self-conscious generation. But for authors, editors, parents, teachers, and librarians this large group of readers poses a series of special problems: what is too old, or too young for teenage eyes? Should there even be a literature for teenagers, or wouldn’t they be better off skipping ahead to adult books? Do boys read at all? Can books offer moral instruction, role models, or guidance on the path to adulthood? Where do books fit into the ever-growing set of multimedia options that are this generation’s birthright?
Marc Aronson, Ph.D. has won the LMP, the industry award for editing, and the Boston Globe Horn Book award for writing books for teenagers. Here, in a series of probing, innovative essays he marshals a decade of insights earned in practice as well as his knowledge as a scholar of publishing history, to pose and answer these key questions. As he explores the true potential of Young Adult literature and revels in the passion of its readers he exposes the real problem with teenagers and reading: adult myths, projections, and blind prejudices.”Exploding the Myths” is a provocative book that will be necessary reading for everyone who deals with this burgeoning generation of readers.
As a YA publisher, editor, writer, and critic, Aronson is an eloquent, passionate advocate for high-quality YA books. The collection comprises 13 of his speeches and articles from the past six years, including “The Challenge and the Glory of YA Literature,” which originally appeared in Booklist. He opens up the intense arguments about censorship, audience (how adult is young adult?), authenticity, popularity versus quality, and more.