Why the Young Adult Genre Needs to Step it up

There was a time not long ago that I would never admit to liking a movie adaption more than the book version, but times have changed. A large majority of books remains better than movie version, but recently I have noticed a trend. More often I am preferring the movie to the book, almost always in the Young Adult genre.

This could be due to me growing older, outside forces such as improvements in technology could be playing a part too. Or, just maybe, YA authors are becoming lazy.

By lazy I mean that YA writing is becoming more scripted, characters more one dimensional, and plots unoriginal. As much as I love reading, books are only composed of ink on a page, a pattern of the same 26 letters. An author has to master the craft or else the movie adaption will come along and make the novel seem like the first draft.

This is where my first point comes in; I did not like the writing style of Suzanne Collins (author of “The Hunger Games” trilogy). I had to force myself to continue reading Katniss’s poorly written inner monologues, but in the movie, I got to interpret a real person’s emotions that I could relate to more easily. Collins’s writing style distracted me from the world, but the use of scenery, musical scoring, and CGI in the movie all helped me to believe in the reality more.

I also believe the movie adaptions of “The Hunger Games” and “Divergent” made the two series seem more different from each other than the books did. Both female leads must leave their family to embark on a life-threatening journey, have to develop a skill in order to survive, and (unsurprisingly) both female leads have a love interest that distracts from the main plot. These may seem like general similarities, so here is a video giving more examples.

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Photo by Tara Sepulveda

Don’t even get me started on the second book in the “Maze Runner” Trilogy. The main character passes out 29 times in “The Scorch Trials”. Yes, I counted.

Maybe I’m just in a reading slump, or maybe I’m actually on to something. Let me know if you agree or disagree in the comment section below!

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