Ah, the beloved book snark.
Sure, there’s a lot of fun to be had in loling and rolling eyes at poorly written plots, flat characters, and nonsensical world-building—but there’s something else I want to do by snarking YA novels.
I want to call attention to the deeper, more problematic aspects of these books, in real time, chapter by chapter.
I want to call out every instance of unquestioned misogyny, every moment in which the “romantic guy” is being abusive and manipulative, every hint of racism, homophobia, ableism, and so on. I want to remove readers from the immersive act of reading (where the story can potentially sweep them away and disguise its problematic aspects, as Claudia Gray’s A Thousand Pieces of You hides its rape), and show them, chapter by chapter, every damaging lesson that readers might subconsciously be learning from their beloved books.
And yes, I also want to highlight poorly written plots, flat characters, nonsensical world-building (etc.), because better-educated readers demand better-written books, and the market is currently flooded with unacceptably substandard YA. In my, uh, humble opinion.
Not all of the books I snark will be equally offensive, but I’ll do my best to only choose novels who carry offensive messages that readers might not have initially picked up on.
Wish me luck.