Hey there! As you may have noticed, I have not been as active as I have been in the past. I used to follow my schedule to a T, and since school has started, I have lost the time I had before. It is with a heavy heart that I must say that I’m taking a hiatus from blogging.
This is temporary! I need to focus on school and especially on getting into college right now. It’s at the forefront of my mind, and while reading is still part of my life, I simply do not have the time I used to.
I don’t know how long this will be. Hopefully I will be back in November. At that point I should have sent in applications and can focus more on other things *cough* reading *cough cough*
I will still be a presence on Instagram (@mindofabookdragon) and Twitter (@bookdragonbooks)! That is something easier to keep up with and keeps me in touch with everything going on. Let me know if you’re on either site so I can check out your profile!
Please do not hesitate to contact us through our email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or DM on Twitter or Instagram. I will do my best to keep up with everything.
Hi everyone! Today’s post is going to be a discussion about mental health in YA. I’ve chosen to post about this today as Monday was World Mental Health Day! Not only that, it’s also Mental Health Awareness week this week. Personally, I think mental health needs to be talked about no matter what day it is, but I love that we have a day for it!
Young Adult literature is a big influence on many teens day-to-day lives. It’s one of the places we turn to when we feel alone or just need some time out. With one in four teenagers in the U.K. experiencing suicidal thoughts and one in ten suffering with anxiety or depression, it’s more important than ever that difficult topics are discussed in Young Adult literature.
However, we still face many issues, not only with the lack of this but also with diversity. Unfortunately, many YA books are more likely to feature main characters with little to no knowledge or experience of mental health issues. One of the other main issues is disability in YA. There are very few books welcoming the subject, especially when the protagonist has a disability. One great example of going against the norm is Not If I See You First by Eric Lindstrom, which features a blind main character.
But things are finally changing. With campaigns and programs like We Need Diverse Books (find out more at www.weneeddiversebooks.tumblr.com), fans and bookworms are demanding authors tackle difficult topics within their writing. With popular authors like Sophie Kinsella (author of Finding Audrey) and John Green (author of Looking For Alaska) openly writing about depression, grief and social anxiety, tackling these issues is becoming slowly more common and acceptable.
Over time, diversity in YA is definitely starting to change, and hopefully will continue to in the coming months and years. But why is this likely to help YA readers?
In the media, we have a very skewed view of mental health. Suicide, self harm and substance abuse is hardly ever reported nationally or internationally, unless it involves a celebrity or public figure. This is changing, with more people sharing their experiences through blogs, articles and social media, but is still likely to be a slow process.
As YA is becoming more and more popular, so are events like conventions. The Young Adult Literature Convention (YALC) is the UK’s biggest YA event, and it takes place every summer at London Film and Comic Convention. I had the privilege this year to attend, and take part in Ask YALC, an agony aunt type panel with Juno Dawson (author of Mind Your Head), Holly Bourne (author of Am I Normal Yet?) and Rosalind Jana (author of Notes On Being Teenage). The panel was hosted by Gemma Cairney, presenter of The Surgery on BBC Radio 1 and soon to be author of Open: A Toolkit for How Magic and Messed Up Life Can Be. This shows that difficult subjects are being openly talked about within the YA community, and not just online.
But we do still face problems within YA – authors may be starting to recognise mental health issues, but it’s still very unclear how to relate characters stories to real life. A common example of this is that many mental health issues are solved by the protagonist finding a love interest or partner. In some instances, this is almost displayed as a long-term fix for their problems, which would not usually help in a real life situation. Many of us suffer with mental health problems alone, and are lucky if we’re surrounded by people we feel completely comfortable to talk to our issues about. Finding Audrey and When We Collided are both good examples of the love interest theory – for example, in Finding Audrey her new boyfriend manages to help Audrey come out of her shell.
Another idea is that our main characters can overcome their problems and stop taking their medication on their own. Yes, this does work for some people, but many need long term help and support through this, and for some it could even be dangerous to come off without it. Books such as When We Collided and Mosquitoland could even encourage people to attempt this.
So, what’s the next step? All in all, I’m hoping we continue on the right path. But one thing I’d love to see more of is how to deal with mental illness in real life – maybe with books showing trips to counselling and/or support groups. We still have a very long way to go, but YA is making progress all the time.
Would you like to hear more about this subject? What do you think of it?
Good day there, friends! It’s a lovely Sunday here in Michigan – nice and sunny, with a crisp air to it. I love fall! I’m a day late again, but things have been crazy so just bear with me until I can get things straightened out.
It was Homecoming week! Our school’s theme was decades, and my class got assigned the 80s. There were fun spirit days, and the game was pretty fun. I didn’t participate in many of the spirit days, but I did try to go all out for Blue and Gold day, which are our school colors. Our football team lost, but that was kind of expected. (They aren’t very good.) Our band had a guy nominated for Homecoming
King, but unfortunately he didn’t win it. I was pretty disappointed because we could pull a big chunk of the vote as a band.
Yesterday was the dance, and it was by far one of the best school dances that I’ve been to. Let’s be clear, I like getting dressed up for the dance, but going to it is never usually my favorite part. However, this time I had a blast (even though the DJ was horrible). My friends and I partied hard, and my date/boyfriend was wonderful. All in all, it was a great last Homecoming for me.
I finished a book this week, too! If you’re friends with me on Goodreads, you’ll know that I just read Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay. I’ve been reading it for my Feminist Literature class, which I’m loving so far. I loved Bad Feminist, and though I don’t think I’ll write a full review on it, I do believe it’s something that everyone should consider reading.
So far I’ve only really just gone out to breakfast with my sister and her husband and done homework. I worked, and now I get to relax for the rest of the afternoon. I did also have the chance to take some book photos for the Instagram, which you should definitely check out (see the side widgets).
This coming week
It’s another busy week this week! I really need to focus on my college applications so I won’t be extremely active. Please forgive and understand that those are the focal point of my life right now.
Hi all! Welcome to my second book to movie adaptation review, where today I’m going to be talking about Twilight!
This is actually the first time I’ve ever watched Twilight – and I was really looking forward to it. I finished the book for the first time last week, and I adored it. You can read my full book review here!
But it might not surprise you if I said I didn’t expect to enjoy the entire franchise – books and movies. After all, the whole thing appears to have bad review after bad review…and when I read the book, this shocked me for the first time. Although the writing is simple, it’s not bad. Although the book is cheesy, it kept me hooked. Although Bella is whiny, I think she has a good reason to be. And finally, although the romance is ever-lingering, I felt like it wasn’t as instant as I expected it to be.
However, watching the movie…kind of made me understand why so many people dislike Twilight.
ICYMI here’s what’s new with YA news (2 weeks worth)
Always and Forever Lara Jean now has a cover
I freaked when I saw this full cover! Jenny Han has been teasing readers on social media throughout the week prior to the full reveal. She posted many behind-the-scenes photos of the shoot for the cover. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Han discusses her writing process for Always and Forever Lara Jean as well as the cover. You can view that here. The expected publication of this is April 4, 2017 so we’ll have to wait a bit for this one still. Can we admire this gorgeousness?
Synopsis: Lara Jean’s letter-writing days aren’t over in this surprise follow-up to the New York Times bestselling To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before and P.S. I Still Love You.
Lara Jean is having the best senior year a girl could ever hope for. She is head over heels in love with her boyfriend, Peter; her dad’s finally getting remarried to their next door neighbor, Ms. Rothschild; and Margot’s coming home for the summer just in time for the wedding.
But change is looming on the horizon. And while Lara Jean is having fun and keeping busy helping plan her father’s wedding, she can’t ignore the big life decisions she has to make. Most pressingly, where she wants to go to college and what that means for her relationship with Peter. She watched her sister Margot go through these growing pains. Now Lara Jean’s the one who’ll be graduating high school and leaving for college and leaving her family—and possibly the boy she loves—behind.
When your heart and your head are saying two different things, which one should you listen to?
Book 4 of the Zodiac series has a title
Romina Russell (aka Romina Garber) released the title of her fourth book in the Zodiac series as Thirteen Rising. The book does not yet have a synopsis released, but the cover was revealed along with the title. Instagrammer and BookTuber Caden (@athousandbookstoread & A Thousand Books To Read) assisted Garber in her celebration of this event.
Because You Love to Hate Me cover reveal
One of the newer YA anthologies, Because You Love to Hate Me is a unique collaboration between BookTubers and authors. Authors include Marissa Meyer, Renee Ahdieh, April Genevive Tucholke, and many more. It follows the tales of many a villains, however no synopsis has been released. To read the full article and excerpt click here.
Hi, there! As you may have noticed, I took a bit of a hiatus this week. This week was a hard one for me, and blogging took a backseat to schoolwork, band, and my life in general. Don’t worry though! I will be back again this month, maybe not as often as I’d like, but I’m going to do my best to re-calibrate some sort of balance into my life – one that includes blogging and reading once again!
I had my last orchestra rehearsal on Tuesday for a while. Although my orchestra is still meeting I will not be able to go all of October due to marching band rehearsal conflicts on Tuesday and we have games every week of October. It’s going to be a fun month though!
I went to the orchestra last night. It was fabulous. I love going to the orchestra, and I was so excited to go. It was a Heroes and Villains theme. Every year my school’s orchestra puts on a Halloween concert, and I have yet to be able to go, but hopefully I can this year.
I am so close to finishing The Unexpected Everything and it’s pretty… okay. I’m still trying to work out my full feelings of the book so hopefully I will have a review out to you guys soon (along with the September Book Junkies chat!).
It’s rainy and gross out today. I have to work a little bit, but after that I’m going over to a friend’s house and we’re just going to watch movies and make food. It’ll be a nice chill day for me after such a rough week.
This coming week
It’s Homecoming week! For those of you who don’t really know what Homecoming is, it’s a celebration that takes place all week that focuses on your school. Alumnae of the school come back on Friday for a football game to see how far the school has come along and stuff. There’s a dance on Saturday, and it’s really fun because everyone gets fancy. I love getting fancy, and the dance is okay. I don’t dance like most people do – I kind of flail and stuff when I dance. It’s much more fun that way. I promise I’ll have some pictures up when I get a chance.
So this was meant to be posted yesterday but I didn’t finish until today so… yay!