April 30, 2015

YA Trends: Is That All There Is?

My dear friends...I'm bored.

[Thanks to Giphy!]

Regardless of having a TBR list that I can't currently make a dent into (due to household priorities), I'm always on the prowl for new releases that might suit my tastes (I'm sure you know the feeling). But lately I've ended up erasing books from the aforementioned list more often than adding new ones - which is good for my pockets, but you know what I mean. Also, I spotted a trend here...I find myself rejecting some of the releases that I'd anticipated the most for months. Not sure if this says something about me or the books themselves LOL. The fact is, the more reviews I read, the less such novels seem to appeal to me. Sometimes it only takes a reviewer mentioning a small detail that I can't buy; other times it's due to someone cleverly deconstructing the premise. And yours truly here erases and erases.

[Original image here (the caption is mine)]

But there's more to it...because most of the times, the rejected books don't get replaced. I may stumble on a title whose blurb intrigues me, only to read the early reviews and find out that it belongs in the "been there, done that" category. I'm aware it's difficult to come up with fresh ideas, but if it's not the case, why write a book at all? Most dystopians are impossible these days, carbon copies of books that are around already. Most contemporaries are knee-deep in high-school drama, which I can't tolerate anymore (mainly because I can't buy half the stuff that's said and done. And no, I don't think it has to do with old age LOL. Or not much at least...). Heck, even magical realism or other genres more than often are angsty romances/high-school dramas in disguise. As for fantasy, I don't read much of it, but the endless stream of creatures that populates the genre would probably bore me to death if I did, because just by glancing at the blurbs, they sound so overused AND alike. You see my distress.

[Original image here (the caption is mine)]

So I was wondering...am I too picky? Do any of you share my feeling of deja vu (or deja lu) when it comes to new releases, and find it difficult to get excited about them? Is the publishing world so full of BOOKalikes as it seems?

10 comments:

  1. Totally not picky! Sometimes I have to ask myself the same questions too. Part of authors recycling ideas and themes are because publishing houses are too afraid on taking on new "ideas" because publishing is a business. Most publishers want to see someone else try and succeed at it. No one wants to be the first one on the dance floor, lol.I haven't given up on YA yet, still have hope that i'll find something fresh and innovative!

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    1. Loved the dancefloor analogy LOL. And you're right, there are probably lots of authors who would like a game change, but publishers keep them anchored to same old because it works...till it doesn't anymore. Show some guts people...we're in the mood for something new!

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  2. You know, I've been wondering about dystopians. In fact, I've been wondering about other genres, too, and ended up coming up with a random discussion post out of the blue that may be posted in the near or far future. o_o

    I HAVE given up on removing books from my TBR pile though. Lots of books that I've added in the past I'm not exactly interested in reading NOW. The Amazon books I once thought were interesting don't seem as appealing anymore. The more books I review and criticize, the more I wonder if I'm well... either a) becoming a better reviewer, b) really crabby sometimes, or c) it's really happening and I'm not dreaming.

    I'm so glad I'm not the only one out there. And puh-lease. I'm a high school kid and I think contemporary is sometimes really ridiculous. Back in the golden days of Middle School, I thought high school would be drama and I would go mad - absolutely mad.

    I'm almost a senior in high school - haven't gone mad yet. And if I do go mad, it's probably from homework. You know... the normal cycles of high school life. :D

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    1. Glad that 1) I'm not alone either, and 2) old age is not getting in the way of my book appreciation ;). Also, you made me think - I suppose that, after dissecting so many books, one ends up becoming a little blasé...

      So high school in the U.S.A. is not necessarily full of drama (except for homework)? I was hoping for a confirmation hehe. Of course, books need to be a little different from plain reality...but still, some stuff always sounded too over the top to me...

      I'm looking forward to that discussion post!

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    2. Pfft. I'm sure there's drama - it just depends on which schools you go to. I promise not EVERY school has drama. We have a few though, but I know for sure my school has a few cliques. We just don't publicize it greatly (I'm in several).

      Some books are VERY over the top. Exaggeration is apparently key. Huzzah.

      But yeah, after you read so many books, everything becomes more predictable. Rarely is anything surprising by that point - you can predict the endings, sense a potential romance or love triangle, etc. My friends have gotten to the point that they've thrown up their arms and say I might as well be a fortune teller at this point.

      Even mysteries don't surprise me anymore. I'm usually one step ahead. >_<

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    3. Insider informations LOL. I like that.

      Some writers need to be less lazy...

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  3. This happened to me once I started blogging and I'm not sure if that's the connection or that is just incidental.

    (for me) it's a combination of being an enthusiastic reader who never in a million years thought I would get bored of book tropes. In my vampire phase I gobbled up dozens of them - often rereading repeatedly. But now I'm like - yeah - more of the same. Skip it.

    The other thing is the reviewing has made me dissect books more than I used to so I tend to notice more & be less forgiving than when I read for fun.

    Aaaaand I believe that YA especially has become very trend-ish in what they publish. Twilight = more supernatural love triangles, The Hunger Games = dystopian love triangles….etc.

    Having done some beta reading for authors though - they think up a lot of ideas YEARS before they ever become popular so it's new to them - not jumping on a bandwagon. I also think there's some resistance to pushing against the grain too. They don't always let authors go to new places with their writing or characters. Which is sad. Because it's always something DIFFERENT that breaks out. Instead of learning that lesson though they just hop on the new trend.

    Well that turned into a long ramble lol

    Karen @For What It's Worth

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    1. It's interesting what you say about beta reads. And it must be frustrating for authors who actually have fresh ideas to see them rejected. One of the things that seem to scare publishers is when they can't pinpoint what a book is about - I mean, put it in a nice little box labelled this or that. You know I often talk about this author called B.C. Johnson, who published his first book (Deadgirl) traditionally, and will put forth a sequel soon - traditionally published too...Well, he ultimately decided to go self-pub with his second book (The Bad Rescue of Devon Streeter), after having it rejected by a few publishers for the very reason that it didn't fit a specific genre...a bit of urban fantasy, a bit of hero saga, a bit of horror, a bit of coming-of-age, a bit of friendship tale...so what? it's a great book full of ideas and feelings and action and strong characters...this should mean something, shouldn't it?

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  4. I know what you mean about books in particular genres being virtual copycats of each other. I love a well-written dystopian but it is hard trying to find any with something new to say or add to the genre. Same with a lot of contemporaries.

    I think some of it comes from being a blogger - you tend to be more discerning about what you read but I think partly it is when they is a successful formula it gets worn into the ground. I wish there were more books out there that took chances but I totally agree with what has been said here that a lot of traditional publishers will want to stick with what sells.

    It is a little frustrating but great idea for a topic!!

    Brin @ Brin's Book Blog

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    1. I just hope someone out there will ultimately stumble on our conversations - since there are so many demands for different or diverse books lately - and realise something's got to change...

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