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Playing Instead of Writing




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A book review about A.S. Byatt’s new book explains Byatt’s dismay at adults who like Harry Potter and other such nonsense. So, are you a childish adult? I carry action figures around with me and I read Harry Potter. Maybe the magic in my novels is another symptom of refusing to be a grown-up.

Are my stories immature? Do you ever worry about this? Do you want to be Peter Pan? When I was a kid I didn’t see the appeal of staying a child forever.

What do you think of adults who like children’s books? What about children who want to read grown-up books? Are the lines too blurred these days?

10 thoughts on “Playing Instead of Writing

  1. Some of my all-time favorite books are YA. I adore cartoons; in fact, the only movies where I can truly suspend disbelief for the whole time are animated ones. CGI, traditional animation, doesn’t matter … if it’s caught my attention, I love it. One of my favorites right now is Phineas and Ferb.

    I don’t want to write YA or children’s books, but I do appreciate well-written ones. Nicholas Sparks’s A Walk to Remember comes to mind. And while that doesn’t stop me from rolling my eyes at certain things, I certain don’t judge anyone because they linger in a childish or childlike aspect into their adulthood, unless and until it starts to interfere with their functioning as an adult instead.

    I hope that makes sense, and keep playing with your action figures. Why not?

  2. In my opinion, AS Byatt and others who show such disdain for young adult or children’s literature are insufferable pompous, pretentious, and insecure.

    And they are quite dismissive of children. Children are more complicated and intelligent than they are often given credit for.

    Perhaps AS Byatt is too invested in her facade of critically acclaimed literary author to accept that others who go a different path might have their own worth.

    I never wanted to remain a child, either. I read YA books by the time I was 7 and adult books by the time I was 12. And then when I grew up, I started reading both adult and YA. Frankly AS Byatt bores me.

    I agree with Mary. AS Byatt can suck it. Immaturity be damned.

  3. We seem to be approaching unanimity on AS Byatt. (Friends have told me I must must MUST read Possession but I’m sorry, it just bounces off my head. Not unlike this comment of hers.)

    You might like the Artemis Fowl books, too. Artemis is a young lad, a beyond-genius criminal mastermind with fabulous monetary resources at his disposal. So he should be able to get anything he wants, right? Not so fast: he keeps running up against the opposition of the elves and fairies. I read a review which described the series as “Harry Potter for adults,” which made me think, y’know, …but isn’t Harry Potter ‘Harry Potter for adults’? and then interested me enough to get the first Artemis Fowl. Which — certainly a plus — was nowhere near the brick of paper you find in a HP book. I’ve read one more and expect I’ll eventually read the rest.

    Oh, and I also like the author’s name: Eoin Colfer. There can’t be many people who share that moniker.

  4. I liked Possession over all, but I don’t recommend it… I couldn’t stay in the story throughout.

    Haven’t gotten to Artemis Fowl yet. Though I’m sure I will. Philip Pullman isn’t just for children either. He’s great.

    You’d think that Byatt would be smart enough to know that just because she can’t see the appeal/value of a particular book, that she doesn’t have to assume there is no appeal or value. That make sense?

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