Sometimes, though, Zach J. Payne, I find that the distinction between YA and adult fiction is blurry, more a distinction of a given publishing house’s marketing decision than a real statement about the book.

For example, The Book Thief by Markus Zusak was marketed as YA even though it’s a powerfully complex novel with themes that resonate far beyond the story being told. I imagine it will go on to be considered a classic over time.

I agree with the thrust of your post, but the definition of YA is sometimes fuzzy, and sometimes more a matter of marketing than of substance or even style.


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Writer. Runner. Marine. Airman. Former LGBTQ and HIV activist. Former ActUpNY and Queer Nation. Polyglot. Middle-aged, uppity faggot.

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