I heard that about 55% of YA (Young Adult) books are read by people who’re older than the intended age range–adults.

When I went fact-checking, I found this: 55% of YA books are bought by adults. (Close enough, right?.) And 78% of those books are purchased for the adults themselves, not a child/younger sibling/etc. Which means… um… about 43% of YA books are read by adults.

Is that good math? Well, it’s a bunch, anyway.

Perhaps these books are for the young at heart. Maybe they’re people like me who don’t really care who a book’s written for as long as it’s good. Or people who are a little slower readers, or don’t have a lot of time, and enjoy reading a book they can complete.

A few favorites grabbed off my shelves. Clive Barker, Tamora Pierce, Terry Pratchett, Meg Cabot, Suzanne Collins, J.K. Rowling.

I read YA, because if a book sounds like something I want to read, I read it, I don’t check to see if it’s YA and ‘too young’ for me. There’s some fascinating YA out there, and a few of the books are so complex they hardly feel too easy.

If an author I love also writes YA, I have to at least check out the books. They’re usually just as wonderful. Sometimes it works the other way–I find an interesting YA book and when I look up the author I find adult books, too. I wonder what percent of authors write in more than one age range?

Do you (adult-like people. Because growing older is mandatory, growing up is optional) read YA? What are your reasons?

About Caitlin Stern

I have a MA in English, and have so many fantasy/urban fantasy WIPs it's not even funny. I'm an avid reader of science fiction, fantasy, mystery, romance, biography, fiction, and anything else that catches my interest. I collect books, and bookmarks I find that are visually appealing and useful.

6 responses »

  1. I read a young adult book totally by accident a couple of weeks ago it was called Pretty Twisted by Gina Blaxhill (the review is on my blog) and I absolutely loved it. i wouldn’t say I avoided the genre before I’d just never considered it. I would definitely read more from that author and also consider YA books in the future.I think your post is correct we shouldn’t confine ourselves to certain genres we should just read what we are interested in and go from there.

  2. Lea Jurock says:

    I read YA books all the time. A lot of the have great stories and are really well written. I, like you, read books because I enjoy them, no matter the age range they are written for. 🙂

  3. Young Adult books are great for taking on airplane trips. Not too long. Not too complicated and can always learn a lesson better.

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