5:27 pm - 05/06/2011

YA authors talk about their favorite Dystopias

Authors Cassie Clare, Holly Black, Sarah Dessen Dish On Favorite Dystopian Novels

Just because some of our favorite YA authors write about shadowhunters, curse workers and everyday girls (and not survivalist teens battling in a wilderness arena) doesn't mean they haven't jumped on the dystopian bandwagon. As part of our final Dystopian Week proceedings, we asked a few non-dystopian writers to weigh in with their favorites from the genre.

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Frankly I'm really resistant to the whole current dystopia craze because it feels like such a blatant cash grab by everyone involved desperate to cash in on Hunger Games. That's not to say that there aren't quality YA dystopias out there right now, but they're few and far between and you know that in 2-3 years everyone will have moved on to the next big thing. Part of the reason why I just can't take it seriously.
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derezzed 6th-May-2011 10:24 pm (UTC)
ugh can they not

fat YA girls should just stick to fanfiction.net tbh
kaiserschmarrn 6th-May-2011 10:25 pm (UTC)
I like dystopian novels like 1984 but I haven't read any dystopian YA novels. Come to think of it, I haven't read any YA novels in my life. Or maybe I have but it seems like a distinct genre in the USA that I associate with the likes of Twilight.
xxamlaxx 6th-May-2011 10:33 pm (UTC)
The Giver is a spectacular dystopian YA novel. It's about the only YA novel that I like, tbh.
leviicorpus 6th-May-2011 10:35 pm (UTC)

It's an amazing book. I always recommend it to everyone who thinks good YA lit doesn't exist.
xxxquothxxx 6th-May-2011 10:25 pm (UTC)
so bored of dystopia/vampires/supernatural ya books tbh.
just want a book about a character and their lives that dont revolve around saving the world.

yes, i am incredibly lame and would prefer boring high school books to dragons ;____;
animalyears 6th-May-2011 10:25 pm (UTC)
idk why people read things that dont challenge them or teach them things
xxxquothxxx 6th-May-2011 10:29 pm (UTC)
*raises hand*
i read childrens books with good characters but simple plots because i prefer characters over plots.

/should be ashamed tbh.
sugarcrawler 6th-May-2011 10:30 pm (UTC)
well i dont see anything wrong with reading for entertainment
i like to read educating/challenging books but reading things for entertainment..nothing wrong with that
juteux 6th-May-2011 10:32 pm (UTC)
do you read textbooks all the time or something?
klmnumbers 6th-May-2011 10:33 pm (UTC)
yeah, I only watch art house films and listen to experimental music, tbqh. Who has time for fun, really?
avilewoman 6th-May-2011 10:37 pm (UTC)
My prof teaches insufferably dense theory and reads YA to relax her brain. Sometimes you just want a fluffy book.
inboots 6th-May-2011 10:40 pm (UTC)
for fun
nuclearcouture 6th-May-2011 10:48 pm (UTC)
idk I write or edit basically everyday, when I read for fun I usually just want to zone out, though I don't mind non-fiction
akasha6915 6th-May-2011 11:09 pm (UTC)
Sometimes I want to read for fun or do fun things, like come on ONTD, watch Drag Race or read a YA novel and other times I enjoy serious business stuff like reading the BBC and NPR news, watching a documentary or reading something heavy duty. Some times your brain needs a break.
sashwizzled 6th-May-2011 11:21 pm (UTC)
And yet you're here on ontd. Your lack of self-awareness is staggering.
likegunfire 6th-May-2011 10:26 pm (UTC)
are there currently any male YA authors...
juteux 6th-May-2011 10:30 pm (UTC)
a dude wrote the uglies series.
twoyearsaway 6th-May-2011 10:31 pm (UTC)
john green
hellopet 6th-May-2011 10:31 pm (UTC)
john green?
rhapsodeeinblue 6th-May-2011 10:33 pm (UTC)
I loved Sabriel and I think a dude wrote that.
klmnumbers 6th-May-2011 10:48 pm (UTC)
Garth Nix!

I have that whole trilogy not a few feet away from me. I really need to read it...
firedawn 7th-May-2011 04:59 am (UTC)

Damn right.
selling_alibis 6th-May-2011 10:33 pm (UTC)
Eoin Colfer, writer of the Artemis Fowl series.
avilewoman 6th-May-2011 10:34 pm (UTC)
Scott Westerfield is one.

I think you find more male YA authors in the LGBTQ YA genre, like Perry Moore (rest in peace), David Leviathan, Alex Sanchez, and Rigoberto Gonzalez.
kyoumei 6th-May-2011 10:36 pm (UTC)
Jonathan Stroud
false_hate 6th-May-2011 10:36 pm (UTC)
plenty. female authors targeting a certain demo are tending to get the most media coverage right now
birchwhite 6th-May-2011 10:44 pm (UTC)
Garth Nix! He's fantastic.
newnewsfriend 6th-May-2011 11:45 pm (UTC)
First ones who came to my mind are James Patterson, James Dashner, Rick Riordan and Patrick Ness. :)
foxyscience 7th-May-2011 05:57 am (UTC)
David Levithan writes really good YA that mostly centers around gay kids, which is pretty hard to find in that genre tbh.
selling_alibis 6th-May-2011 10:27 pm (UTC)
I enjoy a good dystopian novel but there's so much of it to sort through that I've only read 1984, Brave New World and The Handmaiden's Tale.
deftonedpiano 6th-May-2011 10:32 pm (UTC)
Those are ALL good starts, though. I mean, you can't really go wrong with the genre with those choices.
selling_alibis 6th-May-2011 10:34 pm (UTC)
I probably won't go any further than that for now, I'm still going through my post-adolescent struggle with my consumerism and reading way too many overrated writers.
deftonedpiano 6th-May-2011 10:30 pm (UTC)
1984, Brave New World, and We. If you haven't heard of We, then I feel bad for you. It's so good.
derezzed 6th-May-2011 10:30 pm (UTC)
lol when I was a YA I was reading 1984 though...
flowerssleeping 6th-May-2011 10:32 pm (UTC)
i remember doing a book report on 1984 in 7th grade lol
derezzed 6th-May-2011 10:33 pm (UTC)
idk what 7th grade is sorry, I'm from the united K
myheyday 7th-May-2011 12:39 am (UTC)
OT, but who is that hot guy in your icon?
imnotasquirrel 7th-May-2011 02:47 am (UTC)
When I was in the sixth grade, I read The Giver for the first time and fell in love with it. So when I heard a reviewer describe The Giver as 1984 for the kiddy set, I ran out and got the latter.


jasmina12345 6th-May-2011 10:31 pm (UTC)
It boggles my mind as to how anyone could have enjoyed Brave New World...

fucking boggles it to the core. That book was soo unbelievably uneventful for the majority of the book
inboots 6th-May-2011 10:46 pm (UTC)
idk, i read it when i was 12 for school, it was my first foray into dystopia, everything was novel.

also, made me feel less like shit than orwell.
ilovestarburst 6th-May-2011 11:41 pm (UTC)
It's my favourite book! Each to their own I suppose!
fauxkaren 6th-May-2011 10:31 pm (UTC)
Kurt Vonnegut, anyone? I went through a major Vonnegut phase in high school and I still love Cat's Cradle, Sirens of Titan and Slapstick.
klmnumbers 6th-May-2011 10:34 pm (UTC)
I definitely went through a Vonnegut phase a couple years ago. It started with reading Slaughterhouse Five on a plane.

I tried to read Naked Lunch not too long ago, and it was a painful experience. At some point, I will finish that book. But the first 100 pages or so have just profoundly disturbed me. It was laborious to get that far.
crimps4 7th-May-2011 02:54 am (UTC)
This is a super late response, but YESSSS. KV's my favorite author.
juteux 6th-May-2011 10:31 pm (UTC)
I took a course last semester on utopian/dystopian fiction. Though we read real books not YA shit...My fave was Herland by Charlotte Perkins Gilman.
ilovestarburst 6th-May-2011 11:42 pm (UTC)
I don't know Herland, but I really enjoyed The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman!
lexification03 7th-May-2011 05:39 am (UTC)
omg The Yellow Wallpaper is so trippy and amazing!
false_hate 6th-May-2011 10:31 pm (UTC)
God, I love your YA posts. Saving this for giggles when I get home from the bar tomorrow morning.
rinacunt 6th-May-2011 10:32 pm (UTC)
only dystopian novel ive read is 1984 & uglies back in highschool :|
sashwizzled 6th-May-2011 10:33 pm (UTC)
I was going to say I wouldn't read anything Cassandra Clare or Becca Fitzpatrick recommended... but actually, Cassandra Clare's plagiarised from some pretty good stuff, so her taste can't be that bad.
klmnumbers 6th-May-2011 10:38 pm (UTC)
amg Phill Jupitus icon.
rlmoonyk 6th-May-2011 10:55 pm (UTC)
your noel icon is flawless
veelaorion 8th-May-2011 06:51 pm (UTC)
It's so mindboggling how the worst YA writers usually have really good taste. I remember when Stephenie Meyer's myspace profile was still up she listed shows like Flight of the Conchords and Pushing Daisies as her favorite shows. I don't get how you can like flawless things like that and then write... Twilight.
spike_freak 6th-May-2011 10:33 pm (UTC)
Has anyone read "Across the Universe" by Beth Revis (Another overweight female YA author)? Reading it right now, pretty fucking good.
rhythmicstereo 6th-May-2011 10:36 pm (UTC)
I did and thought it was great.
avilewoman 6th-May-2011 10:39 pm (UTC)
I bought it super cheap at the Borders by my place that was going out of business. I find the alternating POVs to be a pain, but I'm pushing through it.
spike_freak 6th-May-2011 10:44 pm (UTC)
Yes, that one thing is annoying me so far...I understand switching POVs every once in a while but not EVERY OTHER CHAPTER.
ceilidh_ann 6th-May-2011 11:07 pm (UTC)
I really enjoyed it but a lot of my sci-fi nerd friends weren't so enthusiastic.
automaticly 7th-May-2011 01:21 pm (UTC)
I thought it was okay. Liked the premise but the main characters are so dumb
veelaorion 8th-May-2011 06:53 pm (UTC)
It wasn't as good as I thought it would be but it was still fun to read.
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