Golden Age is Twelve: How to Analyze a Young-Adult NovelMay 09, 2019

You finish reading a novel, and you lose count of the number of books that you read. You've learned that protagonists can make as many mistakes as they like. It doesn't matter what they do, as everything works out in the end. They will beat the antagonists and put things right. Everything ends up cool. It would remind you of superheroes films except the ending of "Avengers: Endgame". Real life's nasty, also cruel. It doesn't care about heroes and happy endings and the way things should be. In other words, bad things do happen (in real life). People die. Fights are lost, and evil often wins. You might not have get over your Marvel hangover, if not you have spent too much in the loo (browsing through a Marvel comics). It should remind you of a Young-adult novel.

You're about to read an interesting post on the Young-adult genre whether you're attending sessions on Young-adult books or not. You may have enough of an introduction (after reading the opening paragraph), but you realize that you can relate to any Young-adult book. It can happen anywhere, even in your own room. You might have to make an exception on the loo, which is where the plot of "Cirque du Freak" begins. Irish author Darren Shan penned a novel about a teenage boy obsessed about humongous spiders and scary films. He happened to be Darren Shan, which wasn't his real name at all. It wasn't a coincidence that a band of freaks would come to his small town for a few nights, and he was invited to witness strange performers like Madame Octa. She happened to be a giant spider, turning this horror buff into a vampire's assistant.

You're not a huge fan of scary films, but you could identify with Darren's reluctance to go with the flow (and lead a normal life). Not a few teens crave adventure. The waves won't excite you, forgetting that there's a shark-infested area not far from where you go. Shan's novel, which is the first book in the twelve-book series, may not be included in the reading list. (One of your professors didn't like the Hollywood adaptation, which features Salma Hayek with a beard.) You wouldn't mind, as you're a follower of vampire literature. Many readers would think of Harry Potter whenever Young-adult fiction comes to mind. There's a likelihood that you would read the (Harry Potter) series one more time (and write about it), but you might forget a few things.

It's important to note that you need to read a guideline prior to writing an essay on a Young-adult book. Your journey is about to begin.

These Books are Good and Being Recognized: Exploring Young-Adult Fiction

Adults continue to change. Coming-of-age tales go back to the 17th century, and you haven’t read any of Johann Wolfgang Goethe’s stories on young protagonists and their coming of age. You would read them sooner or later, but this is not the point here. Goethe, as well as other authors, would show that the progress towards maturity could take a lifetime. Some might be forced to make a quick transition to adulthood, which the young lads of “Lord of the Flies” would do (for the sake of survival). You must pay attention to the (lead) character’s journey, and determine if circumstances hasten (or impede) his (or her) journey to maturity. Never forget to relate to it, as you’re a teenager yourself.

Teenagers are wondrously earnest. There’s a first time in everything, which young-adult authors would narrate in an excited manner. It would be lacking of cynicism, which is what you must keep in mind. If you’re not dating (yet), then you can recall your first attempt to ride the waves. The Blue Mountains may not excite you, but you won’t forget the surreal sight of the Uluru during a wet morning. And you may (or may not) make a passing on your first time to ride a bicycle. There’s nothing trivial here except your first time to do a binge-watching of your favorite shows on the telly. Don’t get lost into it, writing a page or two about it. Your professor is only interested in your analysis of a young-adult book.

Young-adult fiction is another portal into another aspect of your world. It may take you some time to comprehend the first two items, but not this third (and final) one. You should be able to relate to the story, if not any character, and it’s not difficult to figure it out. It can be the inability to conform (like Harry Potter), also betrayal (like Darren Shen). You may find the case of the Baudelaire siblings too unusual (and too unfortunate), but you wouldn’t mind in joining them in one of their memorable adventures. A holiday in Bali wouldn’t be close, but you haven’t been to the tropic island.

A Good Story is a Good Story

Your comprehension of literary criticism would be put to the test, so you must not forget that you’re reading a good story. And you’re writing about it. There are no right and wrong answers here, but you might have to spend more time in researching (if you don’t think it is). Write it down first. Worry about the word count, if not your lack of (proper) analysis, later. Don’t forget to enjoy it, if not feign (enjoying) it. You’re too young to be jaded in paper writing unless you’re a mature student.

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