General Market YA Fiction: Marked
Blogger: Rachel Kent
Location: Books & Such main office, Santa Rosa, Calif.
Marked by P.C. Cast and Kristin Cast
I read this book a little while ago; it’s not one of my most recent reads, but I want to use this book to comment on the YA market. This story is somewhat like Harry Potter. A teen girl, Zoey, learns she’s something special and goes to a new school that’s specially-designed for others like her. She is, of course, a little more special than the others in her class and has a crush on another student, who is already in a relationship with a girl. Typical love triangle to create that teen angst.
I picked this book up because I had heard from some teen girls that this series was “awesome” and that they loved Zoey. I had also seen these books in every bookstore in town (not the Christian one), and I was wondering why they were so popular. I like to keep up on the YA trends.
I did not like the book, and I was shocked by the content. The teens in the book participate in seances, there are sexual moments, and foul language. The seance scenes were actually really creepy!
The sad thing is that this book isn’t just one of a kind. The YA shelves are full of books like this. I don’t mind a good teen fantasy and I’m not bothered by books with strange characters like vampires and werewolves, but when the characters in the book are really bad examples for teens, I get upset! There’s no reason a teen should read a book with foul language or explicit sexual content, but books like that fill the shelves. It seems that teen books keep pushing the line of what is appropriate.
I’ve also noticed that nearly every cover in the teen section is black these days. I guess black covers increase sales? I think it’s a visual for us all to see how dark the content of teen fiction is getting.
Are books like this really what teens want to read, or are they the only books available? What do you think?
I don’t recommend this book; this is another series I won’t be reading more of. I would love to hear your opinion of the book if you’ve read it, and I won’t be offended if you enjoyed the story. A lot of people have enjoyed it! I’m probably in the minority here.