4.5.08

The coolest stuff in the universe section

Cory Doctorow's new YA novel Little Brother has just been released. You can listen to an excerpt of the audio version by clicking below. You can also listen to him talk about free usage - Doctorow being one of the pioneers in this particular territory.

Link to purchase and download this audiobook without Flash interaction


Over at BoingBoing, Doctorow had the following to say about where his book is shelved in stores:

My editor, Patrick Nielsen Hayden, rang me yesterday to talk about a weird little phenomenon: people who were going to stores looking for my newest, Little Brother, were walking away unfulfilled because they were looking in the science fiction section, not the young adult section. Many of us grew up in an era before the young adult section -- when the kids' section in the store was just picture books and some 400-volume sharecropped series like Sweet Valley High. No longer -- practically every bookstore now sports a large (and growing) YA section filled with some of the most amazing work being done in any literary genre today.

Living in a space that no one watches too closely is one of the secret ways that people get to do excellent stuff. Science fiction's status for decades as a pariah genre meant that writers could do things with literary style, theme, and political content that their mainstream counterparts could never get away with (games, comics, early hip-hop, mashups, and many of the other back laneways of popular culture have also enjoyed this status). These days, a lot of the coolest stuff in the universe is happening in the kids' section of your bookstore (and yes, I'm aware of the irony of calling attention to a field that has prospered because it wasn't receiving too much attention to blossom).

2 comments:

Aishwarya said...

Oh yes. This. This is exactly why half my bookshelves are YA, it's why the YA section is the only part of a bookstore where I will pick up something I've actually never heard of (by someone I've never heard of) and so on.

O'Leary said...

Yes, I think you're right. I've been reading loads of YA for the past six months or so and have come across all kinds of wonderful stuff. Meg Rosoff is fantastic and there are a couple of new novels pubbing soon I would recommend: Just Henry by Michelle Magorian and The Exlosionist by Jenny Davidson. Lots of good stuff to be found in the stacks!