Posted by Julia E. Torres May 1, 2023
Hello and welcome to the third annual International Young Adult Literature Month (#IntlYALitMonth) celebration and blog extravaganza. This is a great opportunity to celebrate and explore the world of young adult literature. As the name suggests, this is a month dedicated to reading, reviewing, and discussing books written for young adults and will include all the genres, themes, and topics you can imagine.
Whether you’re a young adult yourself or simply a lover of this genre, there will be something for everyone during #IntlYALitMonth. Our reviewers will be writing about everything from classic coming-of-age stories to thrilling dystopian adventures. If you are as interested in YA Lit as I am, you’ll appreciate the opportunity it affords for readers to explore complex issues and emotions while also providing an escape from everyday life.
One of my first experiences reading what one might call “YA Lit” was with Judy Blume’s Just As Long As We’re Together. I loved it for the characters that reflected what I was experiencing and for the realistic depictions of what it felt like to experience the world during such a vulnerable and exciting time. My most recent read that I’m fired up and passionate about is The Magic Fish by Trung Le Nguyen. I loved it for the beautiful color symbolism, complex family relationships, and captivating storyline. Though there are decades (and so much change has happened in the field of publishing literature for young adults) between these two titles, I think you’ll agree that they do have one thing in common–they’re unputdownable!
It has meant the world to me to have the support of my community as I’ve worked (and will continue to work) on this project. It is a delight to gather together lovers of YA Lit and to celebrate it all month long. As they say, “If you know, you know,” and the librarians you will be reading from absolutely know. I hope you have a great time exploring new books and authors during #IntlYALitMonth, and I’m sure you will find many inspiring stories and characters to fall in love with along the way. Happy reading!
JULIA E. TORRES is a nationally recognized veteran language arts teacher, librarian, and teen programs administrator in Denver, Colorado. Julia facilitates teacher development workshops rooted in the areas of anti-racist education, equity and access in literacy and librarianship, and education as a practice of liberation. Julia’s work has been featured on NPR, AlJazeera’s The Stream, PBS Education, KQED’s MindShift, Rethinking Schools, Learning for Justice Magazine, School Library Journal, American Libraries Magazine, and many more. She is a Book Love Foundation board member, Educolor Working Group member, a Book Ambassador for The Educator Collaborative, and a co-founder of #DisruptTexts. Her co-authored title Liven Up Your Library: Design Engaging and Inclusive Programs for Teens and Tweens is just the first of many forthcoming publications for librarians and educators. Learn more about Julia on her website juliaetorres.com or on social media @juliaerin80