Today I wanted to talk about something that has been on my mind lately. I really don’t know what to call it other than over stimulation, maybe? I’m not quite sure. I’ll tell my story, and maybe you can tell me if theres some sort of official term for it.
Contemporary is my favorite genre of YA fiction. Its what got me into reading with authors like Sarah Dessen and Laurie Halse Anderson. I’ve been trying to branch out more and I think I’ve been successful and finding some really great books. I started off this year reading a lot of contemporary books, with both new releases and some old ones as well. And then I noticed something strange. I had read about four books all dealing with suicide. Its not really a lot, but its more than half the contemporary books that I have read this year.
I’ve read that the trend for YA books lately is the topic of suicide. I think this is great because its a topic that needs to be talked about. Its something thats pushed under the rug and something that is usually dealt with being ashamed and embarrassed when really it should be brought out into the open and dealt with. I’ve also read some articles that try to push aside this trend in YA books, and I find it to be something really dangerous because I believe that books have the power to transform people. It has the power to pull someone out of their dark spots. Also, you should read what you want to read. Don’t be ashamed.
Now the reason that I bring this up is because after I read these books, I found myself in a kind of book slump and I couldn’t figure out why. All the books that I have been reading lately are great wonderful books, but I found myself dragging through some of them. Then I looked through the books that I read this year and I realized its because I got overexposed to a specific topic in too short of a time.
Don’t get me wrong, I loved all these books. They were sad and heartbreaking in all the right possible ways. I don’t regret reading them at all. I just think maybe it was too much heartbreak all at once. And because they all dealt with the same topic, I think there were bits and pieces that were beginning to blend together.
So whats the problem? I haven’t really been conscious of what books I’ve read when I go to pick up a new book. I need to break up certain genres with other genres so I don’t feel so bogged down by reading too much of one type of book. But this also means that I can’t be as much of a mood reader as I want to be. I try to read specific books by a certain time (like library books and such) just so that I can feel like I’m sticking to some sort of organization. But sometimes, I just feel like reading a certain kind of book or maybe feel like avoiding a certain type of book. Other times, I just pick up whatever. And those whatevers happened to all deal with the topic of suicide.
So tell me, do you like to changes genres every time you pick up a book? or do you just read whatever you’re in the mood for?