Diversity, Intersectionality, and Inclusivity: #YANeedsMore

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Yesterday the hashtag #YANeedsMore started trending, and we jumped in to watch the conversation unfold.

Not surprising was the number of calls for more intersectionality and diversity; we were pleasantly surprised by the rich insight, feedback, ideas, and personal experiences from hundreds of young adult, and proper adult, tweeters.

The YA genre and particularly its older readers have been criticized for a gamut of faults and short-comings. This trending tag was a cry for a more varied genre, and hopefully writers and publishers will follow to match their readers’ experiences, cultures, stories, and relationships.

Here are some of our favorite #YANeedsMore. Continue Reading ›

Where the Queer Characters at?

enotes queer characters at blog

I’m a character-driven reader: it’s the characters that suck me into the plot and make me want to keep turning the pages.  I especially love finding characters who resemble me in some way, from hair texture to musical inclinations. But what happens when you almost never see a key component of your identity mirrored in the characters you love?

I identify as bisexual, and I want to know where the queer characters are in mainstream literature.

To be clear, I’m not talking about the characters you find in the LGBTQ+ section of the bookstore. I hate browsing in that section and feeling that I have to seek out these characters, and that when I do their narratives are only focused on their sexual orientation or gender identity.  I just want queer characters to exist organically in the books read by the mainstream public. Continue Reading ›

Sanitizing “The Giver”

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On August 11, 2014, thousands of teens and their parents eagerly purchased tickets for the long-awaited film adaptation of Lois Lowry’s 1994 Newbery Award-winning novel The Giver.  My teenaged son read it in junior high and loved it. I loved it too. Like Madelyn L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time, Lowry’s The Giver has a subterranean angst that readers can feel bubbling under their fingertips as pages are turned, a sense that no matter how calm this world is on the outside, something is irreparably wrong.

Everyone complains when a beloved novel is turned into a film. This may be especially true of science fiction works, as  entirely new worlds depend on an individual’s imagination formed from an author’s words. When one person, a director, substitutes his own vision for that of countless personal interpretations, tempers flare. While most moviegoers understand the necessity of divergences from the original text, other alterations are harder to accept.

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The New Harry Potter Story from J.K. Rowling

Hear more about the latest update on The Boy Who Lived, published on Rowling’s Pottermore website yesterday.

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HP superfans will be delighted to hear that author JK Rowling, despite insisting that she won’t return to write another addition to her popular series, has released a short update on the adult lives of her beloved characters. The 1,500 word story appears in the form of a gossip column on Rowling’s Pottermore website, written from the perspective of her tabloid journalist character Rita Skeeter.

In it Skeeter reports from the grounds of the current Quidditch World Cup in Patagonia. As usual, nobody is safe from the sharp-quilled busybody, as Skeeter kicks up dirt on Dumbledore’s Army members Harry and Ginny, Ron and Hermione, Neville Longbottom, Luna Lovegood, and more. Among the most scandalous “discoveries” Skeeter shares with her Daily Prophet readers are the Longbottoms’ penchant for a tad too much firewhisky and Teddy Lupin and Victoire Weasley’s steamy snog sessions (“The good news is both of them seem to have invented a method of breathing through their ears”).

If you, too, are nostalgic for a time when we could all look forward to another Harry Potter adventure, read Rowling’s latest tidbit, “Dumbledore’s Army Reunites at Quidditch World Cup Final” here, and let us know what you think!

How to Plan a Road Trip – Getting from Point A to Point B

Summer vacation is fast approaching, and with the promise of free time and sunshine, the wanderlust is real.

from the blog www.stuckincustoms.com

With this in mind, eNotes is here to advise you on how to plan the perfect road trip to a T! From preparation to execution we have you covered when it comes to seizing the day (or road) this summer. Read on for our road trip tips and tricks!

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The Giver Trailer is Here and It Looks Awesomely Creepy

Lois Lowry’s Newbery Award-winning novel The Giver is coming to the big screen, and the first official trailer is out. Take a peek!

The film will star big names Jeff Bridges (as the Giver), Meryl Streep, and Katie Holmes. Newcomer Brenton Thwaites will play the lead role of Jonas, the new Receiver of Memory for his community. Continue Reading ›

The Best Book I Read Last Year

Looking for a good read to begin 2014 right? We have some recommendations for you! Here’s a list of eNotes’ staff members favorite picks from a year of reading. We hope it inspires you when creating your list for 2014.

Clearly the editors, interns, marketing staff and others behind eNotes are a mixed bunch, with high-brow, chick lit, and even photography manuals between us. Check out our reads and let us know what’s on your list in a comment below.

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Gone Girl

This huge bestseller was probably on many readers’ lists for 2013, with its spellbinding plot and really, pretty horrifying characters. It had me compulsively turning its pages, making Gillian Flynn’s dark thriller easily a one-weekend-read. Warning: don’t pick it up without a bit of time on your hands; you won’t want to put it down without solving the mystery of Amy Dunne’s disappearance.

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Infinite Jest

One of eNotes’ co-founders selected a throwback for his 2013 pick: David Foster Wallace’s 1996 novel Infinite Jest. The book is set in a futuristic society of North America and has inspired some polarizing opinions from readers for its complex plot, but it has to be admired for its influence over the past two decades of fiction. If you’re looking for a challenging, important read, look no further.

Continue Reading ›