Look, we all love young adult fiction. The Hunger Games, the Divergent series, John Green’s novels, even Twilight — there’s no denying that these books have captivated millions of readers, spawned epic movie franchises and inspired young people, particularly girls, to connect with genres like science fiction and fantasy. (Personally, I’m having a Harry Potter renaissance at the moment and enjoying the heck out of it, and I’m in my thirties.)
But when you consume a lot of YA, you can’t help but notice plot points that are problematic, silly or just plain repetitive — like a mopey teenager becoming the reluctant Chosen One leading a revolution, and she somehow looks like a sexy 26-year-old even though she’s been malnourished all her life, and of course she’s in a love triangle with two dudes who seem a bit creepy and abusive if you really think about it, and why is everybody so white and straight all the time?
It’s provided a lot of joke fodder for the smartasses over on Twitter, first with the “Dystopian YA Novel” account, and now with the hilarious #VeryRealisticYA hashtag, which imagines how these stories would go if the characters were more like real teenagers. Yes, it’s bitingly sarcastic and probably annoying to some YA fans. But even if you love a thing, maybe because you love that thing, you should still be able to laugh at it sometimes and stay aware of its flaws.
Here are my favorites so far:
In a non-post-apocalyptic world, it’s up to one teenage girl to do some extracurriculars because colleges like that. #VeryRealisticYA
— Mark Harris (@MarkHarrisNYC) March 30, 2015
Boy meets Girl. Boy & Girl date. Boy proposes to Girl at prom. Girl says no because it’s only been 6 months & they’re 18. #VeryRealisticYA
— Becca Canote (@BeccaCanote) March 29, 2015
Boy receives a letter written in green ink, informing him he is a wizard. His cousin, who wrote it, youtubes his reaction. #VeryRealisticYA
— Micro SF/F Fiction (@MicroSFF) March 30, 2015
Gay best friend is not sassy or a fashion pro, just a cool guy to be around #VeryRealisticYA
— Amanda Coppedge (@amandacoppedge) March 29, 2015
5 very different kids get Saturday detention. They sit quietly and just get through the day, never interact. #VeryRealisticYA
— Jenny Trout (@Jenny_Trout) March 29, 2015
What are your favorite #VeryRealisticYA moments? Tell us in the comments!