Wow this week was an amazing week for YA Saves!
Many new posts and articles were created by fellow bloggers as well as some great new Tweets!
This week I want to discuss the how we define YA Saves Literature through categorizing different types.  There are many different types of YA literature out there, helping others in different and unique ways.  YA Saves literature does not just have to be about self mutilation, drugs, abuse, etc.  YA Saves literature can be about beating the odds, illnesses, and even just living day by day in a not-so normal world.
Here is a list of of ‘types’ that I have created:
  • Abuse (sexual, drugs, alcohol, rape, mental, emotional)
  • Coming of Age/Growing Up
  • Death & Dying
  • Disabilities
  • Diseases 
  • Divorce
  • Drugs & Alcohol 
  • Fitting In
  • GLBT
  • Illnesses
  • Love
  • Mental Health 
  • Race & Ethnicity
  • Relationships (love, friendship, family)
  • Self Mutilation
  • Sex
  • Stereotypes
  • Surviving – anything!
  • Suicide
  • Teen Pregnancy
  • Violence
  • Weight (eating disorders, obesity, etc.)

Of course this is not a “cannon” or a complete list – I don’t think there ever will be a complete list or a cannon, as YA Save literature is unique to the person, and how it affects/helps them.   Also, many books cover many ‘types’ at one time.  Such lists could go on forever.  This is the case with most YA Save Literature – that is what makes these books so amazing!  For example, Laurie Halse Anderson’s Speak is about rape, being singled out, trying to fit in with yourself, finding yourself, and coming to terms.

Since today is the 10th anniversary of 9/11 I thought it only appropriate to cover a few of these ‘types’:

Survival – being left behind by death &/or surviving catastrophes and the elements
We each deal with death in different ways, whether it has taken loved ones or has left us behind.  In the end we are left with questions, hurt, pain, confusion, anger, sadness, numbness, and every other emotion you can think those.  YA Literature helps many of us explore these feelings and even at times define and come to terms with all the dimensions.
Here are some wonderful YA Novels that focus on such feelings of being left behind by death and dealing with death, specifically from catastrophes (i.e. plane crashes, sinking boats) and the elements of Mother Nature:

The Winter Road by Terry Hokenson   (Amazon/GoodReads)
This visceral survival story pits Willa against both arctic temperatures and her own self-doubt. She’ll need more than snow boots and her pilot’s training if she ever wants to see home again.
Seventeen-year-old Willa hates the knight’s helmet that she made in shop class. After brooding for a moment, she fetches a sledgehammer and smashes it. Since her brother Ray died, her mother is never around and her father ignores her. She needs to prove herself, to them, and to Ray. So when Uncle Jordy’s drinking threatens to disrupt her mother’s workshop tour of remote native villages, Willa jumps in his plane and flies the cold Canadian route alone to pick her up.

Rough Waters by S.L. Rottman   (Amazon/GoodReads)

After their parents are killed in a car accident, Scott and Gregg leave their comfortable life in Southern California to live with an uncle in the remote Colorado Rockies. Soon Gregg is running with the wrong crowd and only a crisis can bring him to his senses before he loses the only family he has left.

Lipstick Apology by Jennifer Labaley  (Amazon/GoodReads)

 Sometimes a good-bye is just the beginning… When Emily Carson’s parents die in a plane crash, she’s left with nothing but her mother’s last words scrawled in lipstick on a tray table: “Emily, please forgive me.”
Now it’s fall and Emily moves to New York City where she attracts the attention of two very different boys: the cute, popular Owen, and her quirky chemistry partner, Anthony. With the help of some surprising new friends, Emily must choose between the boy who helps her forget and the one who encourages her to remember, and ultimately heal.
Debut author Jennifer Jabaley has written a wonderful, feel-good romantic comedy with real emotional depth. Full of lovably wacky characters, Lipstick Apology is a heartwarming story about the true meaning of forgiveness.

Coping with the aftermath of 9/11
After one of the greatest terrorist attacks to the U.S., many were left with questions of who to trust – unfortunately, many of these questions focused around race and religion.  Here are some great books that can help Teens learn more about and find acceptance in the wake of a terror attack.
Shine, Coconut Moon by Neesha Meminger  (Amazon/Goodreads)

Seventeen-year-old Samar — a.k.a. Sam — has never known much about her Indian heritage. Her mom has deliberately kept Sam away from her old-fashioned family. It’s never bothered Sam, who is busy with school, friends, and a really cute but demanding boyfriend. But things change after 9/11. A guy in a turban shows up at Sam’s house, and he turns out to be her uncle. He wants to reconcile the family and teach Sam about her Sikh heritage. Sam isn’t sure what to do, until a girl at school calls her a coconut — brown on the outside, white on the inside. That decides it: Why shouldn’t Sam get to know her family? What is her mom so afraid of? Then some boys attack her uncle, shouting, “Go back home, Osama!” and Sam realizes she could be in danger — and also discovers how dangerous ignorance can be. Sam will need all her smarts and savvy to try to bridge two worlds and make them both her own.

 The Breadwinner by Deborah Ellis   (Amazon/GoodReads)

Since the Taliban took over Afghanistan, 11-year-old Parvana has rarely been outdoors. Barred from attending school, shopping at the market, or even playing in the streets of Kabul, the heroine of Deborah Ellis’s engrossing children’s novel The Breadwinner is trapped inside her family’s one-room home. That is, until the Taliban hauls away her father and Parvana realizes that it’s up to her to become the “breadwinner” and disguise herself as a boy to support her mother, two sisters, and baby brother. Set in the early years of the Taliban regime, this topical novel for middle readers explores the harsh realities of life for girls and women in modern-day Afghanistan. A political activist whose first book for children, Looking for X, dealt with poverty in Toronto, Ellis based The Breadwinner on the true-life stories of women in Afghan refugee camps. 

 Habibi by Naomi Shihab Nye   (Amazon/GoodReads)

Fourteen-year-old Liyana Abboud loves to hear her father call her habibi–Arabic for “darling”. But she’s not prepared for her family’s decision to move from St. Louis to Jerusalem. This provocative first novel from the acclaimed poet builds a bridge to the Arab world, introduces a family readers won’t soon forget, and offers a hope for peace.

 Borderline by Allen Stratton  (Amazon/GoodReads)

The truth is closing in.
Life’s not easy for Sami Sabiri since his dad stuck him at a private school where he’s the only Muslim kid. But it’s about to get a lot worse.
When Sami catches his father in a lie, he gets suspicious. . . . He’s not the only one. In a whirlwind, the FBI descends on his home, and Sami’s family becomes the center of an international terrorist investigation. Now Sami must fight to keep his world from unraveling.
An explosive thriller ripped from today’s headlines, borderline is the story of a funny, gutsy Muslim-American teen determined to save his father, his family, and his life. 


My questions for your this week are:
What “types” of categories can you think of
and
What books have helped you, if any, cope with the aftermath of 9/11?

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