Checking in on YA Titles: Gwenda Bond's Picks

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Shaken & Stirred, run by Gwenda Bond, is one of the most literate and interesting blogs out there. Especially in the last couple of years, it has also been of great use for those interested in Young Adult fiction. Bond is a bit of an expert on the subject--in addition to writing for Publishers Weekly, the Washington Post, Kirkus, and Strange Horizons, she is working on a young adult novel and pursuing an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults at Vermont College. She also writes an advice column for Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet as everyone's Dear Aunt Gwenda. You can read much of her published work online for free (or buy some in print if you'd rather).

I recently interviewed Bond about current and classic YA. Bond is an enthusiastic advocate for the form: "The great thing about YA--and children's literature, in general--is that genre divisions are a lot less set in many ways. All the books are in the same section of the bookstore, with the exception that series books are generally broken out on their own. I believe that the overall level of quality in YA is higher than in adult books--perhaps because less is published--and so I'd encourage a person to just wander the section and take a chance on something that piques their interest."

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