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Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?



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Old June 11th, 2009, 10:38 pm
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Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

I'm 21, but still like reading books that are more aimed at a teen audience (say 11-15 or so), but never really got into adult books yet. Or maybe it's because the first adult-aimed book I read had really gratuitous sex scenes just plonked in the middle of an otherwise really good plot. Well, there's JKR of course, but her Harry Potter series 'grew' with its readers, so that's sort of different in some way. Heck, all my very favourite authors are writers for young adults. JKR aside, they are: Jackie French, Marcus Sedgwick, and, to an extent, Theresa Breslin.

I want to get out Catch 22 (but of course they're all out, so I had to put a hold on it), because it sounds like a good book to read, and I won't feel so bad about reading books meant for someone younger than me.

Whoops, just remembered one or two other books: is All Quiet on the Western Front considered a more 'adult's' or more 'young adult's' book? I have a feeling it's more an adults book, simply because it's also in the Adults' section at my library, along with Oliver Twist (which I've read), and Les Miserables (which I've also read).


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Last edited by Marina; June 11th, 2009 at 10:47 pm. Reason: Typo in title
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  #2  
Old June 12th, 2009, 4:02 am
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

I don't think there's anything wrong with it. Some books aimed for children or young adults are the most brilliant works out there. I still very much enjoy reading things that I read when I was younger or things that are meant for people younger than I. A lot of adults books are too heavy, serious, inappropriate, etc. for some people's tastes. I think you should read whatever you enjoy, and if that's books intended for younger audiences, so be it.


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Old June 12th, 2009, 5:46 am
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

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Originally Posted by _LoonyLovegood_ View Post
A lot of adults books are too heavy, serious, inappropriate, etc. for some people's tastes. I think you should read whatever you enjoy, and if that's books intended for younger audiences, so be it.
I often get scared by the extensive plot descriptions on the dust jackets and/or my library's catalogue on a lot of the adult books.

And OT, but I absolutely adore your avatar, LoonyLovegood!


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Old June 12th, 2009, 5:47 am
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

I do it all the time. The books can still be entertaining, even though you're a 10th grader reading a 5th grade novel. Like _LoonyLovegood_ said, a lot of adult books are too hard core for people, and sometimes you need a break - read some Andrew Clements or something. But as I look at it again, most books I read are based in my age group, young adult.


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Old June 12th, 2009, 5:51 am
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

I agree with LoonyLovegood. Read whatever you enjoy There's no said rule that adults ought to ignore some books while read some others. I know adults who read books meant for 10 year olds because those books are much lighter, happier and more imaginative at times. They love such books because unlike some adult books, they aren't violent, depressing or too serious.

And I personally love reading Enid Bylton, Roald Dahl even now. It's a good break from all the serious reading I do


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Old June 12th, 2009, 7:32 am
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

No problem at all. Last night I read The Very Hungry Caterpillar. I'm 19. Never gets old


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Old June 12th, 2009, 10:46 am
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

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Originally Posted by Hysteria View Post
No problem at all. Last night I read The Very Hungry Caterpillar. I'm 19. Never gets old


I sometimes read books that I loved when I was younger, usually if I've had a hard day and am in need of escape.


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Old June 12th, 2009, 6:15 pm
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

Not a problem with me, though I admit it was a fleeting thought going through my head yesterday, that I was the only person over 20 looking through the Young Adult section in the library (But since I still look like I'm 15 I'm sure I'm the only one who else noticed ).

But yeah, I like a lot of young adult fiction. Heck, I still sometimes read children's books (Matilda, Ms. Piggle Wiggle, and the Clue mysteries, anyone?)! If you enjoy the book, you shouldn't worry where it falls or what it's rated. I think I'll still be rereading Harry Potter when I'm over 40

I did had a stint in life where the adult romances were all I was obsesing over, but by 14 I was pretty burned out by the repetitiveness and lack of any development in most of them. I think the breaking point was where a woman decided to marry a man who vowed never say "I love you", but did it on the second to last page just so she would stay with him and she believed him. Or maybe it was that nearly 600 page historical romance where absolutely nothing happened after page 200. Or just maybe that Halequin novels' plots were always the same in a different colored package xD


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Old June 12th, 2009, 6:49 pm
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hysteria View Post
No problem at all. Last night I read The Very Hungry Caterpillar. I'm 19. Never gets old
I love that book.

I actually made a list of five or so of my favorite books from when I was younger that I want to go back and read this summer. I also read Nancy Drew and the Wayside School books once in a while, and have been known to dig out all of my old Christmas picture books every holiday season.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lilyrose
I know adults who read books meant for 10 year olds because those books are much lighter, happier and more imaginative at times. They love such books because unlike some adult books, they aren't violent, depressing or too serious.
Exactly. When I'm in the mood to read something that doesn't destroy my faith in humanity, I generally reach for children's books.


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Old June 12th, 2009, 6:52 pm
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

I dont think there's anything wrong with reading books at any level, above or below your age range. A good book is a good book, and it reaches all ages. I think the point worth mentioning is that you are reading and you are enjoying what you read, I think thats far more important than any "age" recommendation on a book. I think the age range is there as a baseline for a target audience not as a rule.


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Old June 13th, 2009, 6:56 am
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

Time to quote Narnia author C. S. Lewis:

Quote:
I am almost inclined to set it up as a canon that a children's story which is enjoyed only by children is a bad children's story. The good ones last.
Quote:
“Critics who treat "adult" as a term of approval, instead of as a merely descriptive term, cannot be adults themselves. To be concerned about being grown up, to admire the grown up because it is grown up, to blush at the suspicion of being childish; these things are the marks of childhood and adolescence....When I was ten, I read fairytales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I became a man, I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up.”
Both quotes from On Three Ways of Writing for Children


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Old June 13th, 2009, 7:06 am
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

i definitely still read young adult novels...i kind of switch between the young adult and general fiction. and i still read books i read back in fourth or fifth grade; i will probably sit down sometime this summer with one of my favorite "Dear America" books. and i will purchase pretty much any Artemis Fowl book that comes out because i think that writer is pretty great. i really don't see why they section off libraries and bookstores like that, honestly. i mean, you enjoy what you enjoy and that's all that matters.


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Old June 13th, 2009, 8:02 am
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

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i definitely still read young adult novels...i kind of switch between the young adult and general fiction. and i still read books i read back in fourth or fifth grade; i will probably sit down sometime this summer with one of my favorite "Dear America" books. and i will purchase pretty much any Artemis Fowl book that comes out because i think that writer is pretty great. i really don't see why they section off libraries and bookstores like that, honestly. i mean, you enjoy what you enjoy and that's all that matters.
The main reason they section off those areas is to help their age groups find things that appeal to them (any 12-year olds out there who like Dostoyevsky?) while appeasing parents that don't want their kids reading anything "inappropriate" (ie, novels with gratuitous sex and violence). Kid-friendly and kid-targeted aren't necessarily the same thing.


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Old June 14th, 2009, 7:39 am
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

I read tons of young adult books. They make up the bulk of my reading outside of work (I teach high school English). I think a main reason I am attracted to Y.A. books is because I read so much heavy stuff for my job. And when I taught middle school, I was always searching out Y.A. books to recommend to kids. I read even more of them then because I wanted to know what I was recommending and be able to discuss it with the kids.
Quote:
Originally Posted by _LoonyLovegood_ View Post
Some books aimed for children or young adults are the most brilliant works out there.
I agree totally. Some of the best books I have ever read were intended for young adult audiences.
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Originally Posted by lilyrose View Post
I know adults who read books meant for 10 year olds because those books are much lighter, happier and more imaginative at times. They love such books because unlike some adult books, they aren't violent, depressing or too serious.
I do that. I think I also like an escape from the heavy language of the classics. It is nice to just read a book and not grapple with the language. The plot, themes, and characters can be just as rich, but it is just refreshing for me to read quickly and not over-analyze things to death.
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Originally Posted by Spacecadet View Post
A good book is a good book, and it reaches all ages.
Quote:
Originally Posted by cardinalguy View Post
Time to quote Narnia author C. S. Lewis:
Quote:
I am almost inclined to set it up as a canon that a children's story which is enjoyed only by children is a bad children's story. The good ones last.
I adore this quote.


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Old June 14th, 2009, 10:13 pm
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

Well, reading books aimed for younger people is WAY better than being a tween and reading PWP stuff just to be 'adult'. 'Nuff said.


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Old June 15th, 2009, 11:22 pm
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hysteria View Post
No problem at all. Last night I read The Very Hungry Caterpillar. I'm 19. Never gets old


Quote:
Originally Posted by Mad_Druid View Post


I sometimes read books that I loved when I was younger, usually if I've had a hard day and am in need of escape.
I haven't read any of my favorites from my younger years, speaking of which I probably should because they're some of the ones I absolutely love. I don't think it really matters, I mean sometimes I even like to read Dr. Seuss's books only because they're great. It all depends on perference and what catches your interest.


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Old June 16th, 2009, 12:54 am
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

Of course it's ok! Good books are good books, end!
Also (according to my personal experience) it's easier to find good books in literature for children, or teens, or wide audiences. You know why? Younger ages are more difficult to sit down and read anything. Adult books have more chances to be cheesy or too heavy.

I have a little sis and do this all the time, I have a double amount of books to read that way


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Old June 16th, 2009, 7:07 am
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

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Also (according to my personal experience) it's easier to find good books in literature for children, or teens, or wide audiences. You know why? Younger ages are more difficult to sit down and read anything.


Popular books for children are almost always good because they've earned the approval of kids, who ( I'm quoting this from a published author I know) "are the toughest critics to satisfy". It's never easy to make them sit and read. They either love the book or they hate it. So, successful books for children are almost always well written and enjoyable.


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Old June 17th, 2009, 12:09 am
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

Some books aimed at children are still brilliant, just look at Harry Potter and His Dark Materials. I think the young adult books are more about the lack of sexual content, swear words, really graphic (either violent or disgusting or disturbing) content and things like that


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Old June 17th, 2009, 1:04 am
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Re: Is it okay to still read books meant for younger audiences as an adult?

His Dark Materials were, in my opinion, for teens, not kids. They had an amount of detailed violence, after all.


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