So, there's been a
- It started with Meghan Cox Gurdon's essay "Darkness Too Visible: Contemporary fiction for teens is rife with explicit abuse, violence and depravity. Why is this considered a good idea?" in which Gurdon makes an aside about "the hyper-violent, best-selling 'Hunger Games' trilogy and Sherman Alexie's prize-winning novel 'The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian'" (both of which, I should mention, I've taught in my university courses, and both of which I've reread for my own personal edification).
- The YA community answered Gurdon. Loudly.
- And there's more at Hogwarts Professor, specifically on Gurdon's use/misuse of The Hunger Games: "We Didn’t Start the Fire: Young Adult Reading Controversy."
In other news, I failed to post a couple of days ago on the anniversary of the Oklahoma Girl Scout Murders in Locust Grove. (For my past posts on this topic, see here.) There are, however, a couple of new developments...
- As of this week, the brand new book Tent Number Eight: An Investigation of the Girl Scout Murders and the Trial of Gene Leroy Hart by Gloyd McCoy is available for order. I'll report back as soon as I've read it. (I'll probably give Someone Cry for the Children: The Unsolved Girl Scout Murders of Oklahoma and the Case of Gene Leroy Hart another read for comparison's sake, as well.)
- John Russell says his forthcoming fictional film about the 1977 killings of three Girl Scouts in Oklahoma will reveal the identity of the actual killer: "Man Hopes to Solve 1977 Triple Killing." I don't really know what to think about this. I'm withholding judgment until I know more.
In happier news, the Smart Pop Books anthology Nyx in the House of Night: Mythology, Folklore and Religion in the P.C. and Kristin Cast Vampyre Series is now available! It includes my essay “Reimagining ‘Magic City’: How the Casts Mythologize Tulsa.”
In parting, a couple of thoughts with reference to the Gurdon/Young Adult Fiction controversy...
"Their [children's] books like their clothes should allow for growth, and their books at any rate should encourage it." - J.R.R. Tolkien, "On Fairy-Stories"
"I think it possible that by confining your child to blameless stories of child life in which nothing at all alarming ever happens, you would fail to banish the terrors, and would succeed in banishing all that can ennoble them or make them endurable." - C.S. Lewis, "On Three Ways of Writing for Children"