Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Teen Scene -- The Older Crowd

So, I know Pam and I usually feature teens who are in high school, but today I've got a new sort of teen for you: The College Student.

The College Student works at my day job part time -- she sits in my office when she's there.  *evil grin*  So, naturally I've pinned her down to talk about books.  Because that's what I do.  To everyone.

The last two books she has read were:

Miracle on the 17th GreenJames Patterson's MIRACLE ON THE 17th GREEN

"Travis McKinley is an ordinary man living an ordinary life - he has a job that he despises, a marriage that has lost its passion, children from whom he feels disconnected, and at age fifty, a sense that he has accomplished nothing of consequence with his life. But on Christmas Day, he goes out to play a round of golf, and for the first time, he finds himself in the "zone." "

The Last Song
Nicholas Sparks's THE LAST SONG

"Seventeen year-old Veronica “Ronnie” Miller’s life was turned upside-down when her parents divorced and her father moved from New York City to Wilmington, North Carolina. Three years later, she remains angry and alienated from her parents, especially her father… until her mother decides it would be in everyone’s best interest if she spent the summer in Wilmington with him. Ronnie’s father, a former concert pianist and teacher, is living a quiet life in the beach town, immersed in creating a work of art that will become the centerpiece of a local church. The tale that unfolds is an unforgettable story about love in its myriad forms – first love, the love between parents and children – that demonstrates, as only a Nicholas Sparks novel can, the many ways that deeply felt relationships can break our hearts… and heal them."

And according to The College Student, it's really hard to find books she wants to read.  Not because there's nothing out there, but because she doesn't know where to go look.

This is where I realized how much a New Adult section could influence younger readers like her who don't see themselves as teenagers anymore.  Until that time comes though, I promised to bring her a healthy dose of YA books with older protagonists. 

What do you all think of this?  How do you feel about a New Adult taking hold of the industry?  I know there isn't much market for it right now, but in my opinion it could be the next Big Thing.


Alicia Gregoire said...

I am so waiting for New Adult to take off. A lot of my protags have been on the older side of YA lately.

Taryn said...

It'll be hard for New Adult to start, but I think once it starts, it will flourish. I'm right on the edge between YA and New Adult as a college-student-teen.

A problem with NA is that its target age group doesn't believe in reading for pleasure, so getting the "correct" demographic excited could be difficult.

Steph Sinkhorn said...

It's probably the next logical progression of things. Millennials in generally are remaining more "young" and less "adult" for longer -- staying in school and/or not striking out on their own until they're 25-30. I think there's something to be said for the not-quite-a-teenager-but-not-quite-an-adult stage.

Phil said...

@Steph - I've heard the same thing, too. They're calling our 20s "emerging adulthood" now. I would love for New Adult to take off. All you need is one hit book to kickstart the genre. Vampires in college?

Pam Harris said...

I would have LOVED to have read more books with college-aged protagonists--especially since I was the 1st one in my family to actually attend. Seems like it would have made my 1st year way easier.

kirstenlopresti said...

Interesting idea. Now that I think about it, I haven't come across many books with college age protagonists. I wonder why.

Rachel Brooks said...

The publishing industry is constantly changing, so maybe New Adult books with college aged characters are the next big thing!

Also, I’m a new follower—wonderful blog! Stop by my blog and follow me too? :) http://rachelbrookswrites.blogspot.com/

KO: The Insect Collector said...

I think all it takes is ONE "new adult" super seller, and it will explode as a category.


I agree. But, then again, I've always thought books should list and age range on the back. Particularly those in the 14+ or 17+ categories. We do it for movies, why not books? Great post. : )

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