For the past few years the books that I have most eagerly awaited each season were usually YA dystopian novels. It was one of the few times that I have been caught up in a reading fad/craze at the same time as the rest of the world. Lately, however, I have found that I can’t bring myself to read the long-awaited final installments to many of these series. I just don’t care anymore. This love affair with dystopian fiction is, for the most part, over.
The vampire and werewolf craze? I was about a decade late to that party. Zombies? I don’t think I’ll ever jump on that bandwagon. Harry Potter? I didn’t start reading them until after the fourth book was published – and then raced through the series, and still frequently reread them.
Because I don’t read book blogs as religiously as I used to, I’m not quite sure what the next big reading fad is. Perhaps the dystopian phase will go on for a few more years, I know that the vampire books are still being written, but aren’t being cranked out in the massive quantities that they had been at the height of Twilight popularity.
Which leads me to wonder if fads in reading and publishing tend to show up more prominently in Young Adult books. Perhaps that readership is more prone to fads?
After exhausting my interest in YA dystopian novels, because it just seems like more of the same rehashed plot over and over, I have been picking up books from different genres (general fiction, literary fiction, historical fiction, fantasy, nonfiction, etc.), and even though there are gems here and there, the one that’s holding my attention is the science fiction. I love the quality of the writing with literary fiction, but get turned off by the disheartening content: death, rape, dysfunction, depression. It’s not that I’m looking for fluffy lighthearted stories, but I’d rather read something that isn’t morbidly depressing for the sake of being “serious writing.”
Thankfully there are talented authors writing exciting high quality stories in the science fiction genre. I’ve loved science fiction ever since reading the Robert Silverberg novel, Starman’s Quest when I was in the fifth grade. Because of that I have a hard time knowing what the stereotypical bias against science fiction would be. I’m guessing, too geeky, too weird, too many boring details about imagined societies? I love all of that stuff.
But my absolute favorite thing is when I find high quality intelligent writing from science fiction writers. I love it when I can find writing that stimulates my intellect, challenges me, and yet spurs my imagination and brings me a joyous adventure story at the same time.
Which brings me to my most anticipated book of the season: Nebula Awards Showcase 2014
I spent many hours last summer poolside reading the Nebula Awards Showcase 2013, and it was an experience to be savored. If you are new to the genre and looking for high quality writing, this is a great place to start. I know that science fiction and fantasy are not for everyone, but for me this is the book I’ve been waiting for for months.
So my questions to you are:
Which newly released book are you most eagerly awaiting this summer? And what do you see as the newest reading fad?
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*Blogger's note: What do you see as the new fad? I would really like to know and why if you feel like it. :)