John Corey Whaley’s “Where Things Come Back” – A Haunting and Truly Thought-Provoking Read

It is difficult to find quality young adult novels with a sensitive male teenager as the protagonist. While this has to do with the stereotypes generally tied to readers of the genre, the rarity of this character also has a lot to do with issues and perceptions of gender in contemporary society. There is something … Continue reading John Corey Whaley’s “Where Things Come Back” – A Haunting and Truly Thought-Provoking Read

Justin Torres’ “We the Animals”: A Fresh and Animalistic Twist to the Coming-of-Age Narrative

When constructing the list for my doctoral exams, I wanted to include novels that discussed issues of development, coming-of-age, and sexuality from multiple perspectives. Justin Torres’ We the Animals not only caught my attention because it was favorably reviewed by authors such as Michael Cunningham, but also because it contains Puerto Rican representations—and as some … Continue reading Justin Torres’ “We the Animals”: A Fresh and Animalistic Twist to the Coming-of-Age Narrative

John Donovan’s [I’ll Get There. It Better Be Worth the Trip] – The First YA Novel With Gay Content

During the same political and cultural climate that produced the 1969 Stonewall Riots, John Donovan's I'll Get There. It Better Be Worth the Trip was published.  Although the riots were not causal of the books publication, it is no coincidence that both events were symptomatic of the tensions and pressures faced by the newly forming gay … Continue reading John Donovan’s [I’ll Get There. It Better Be Worth the Trip] – The First YA Novel With Gay Content

Growth and Development in Stephen Chbosky’s [The Perks of Being a Wallflower]

Update: The content of this blog post was developed into an academic article that was published by The ALAN Review. I'm thrilled to announce that this article obtained the Nilsen-Donelson award for the best academic article published in 2013. Click on the following link to download a PDF version of the full article: Writing Through Growth, Growth Through Writing: … Continue reading Growth and Development in Stephen Chbosky’s [The Perks of Being a Wallflower]