The luckiest park bench

Well, hell, since we’re all sitting around waiting for the DTP to publish our kindle books, (Oh, it’s just me and Susan?) why don’t we have a little discussion on sex in young adult novels?  Glimpse recently received a 4 star review on Goodreads from a woman who said she would have given it 5, but she was not comfortable with 12-year-olds reading the “park bench” scene and she thought Glimpse was geared for tweens because of the illustrated cover.

What say you?  Does Glimpse need a rating?  I tried to keep the bad language and the super sexer stuff to a minimum, but not so much in Glimmer.  The characters are older, they’ve been dating a while, there’s that whole supernatural trigger bond thing…MOM STOP READING NOW Listen, I was as churchy as they come in high school, but the park bench scene really happened to me when I was 15.  So, do I think that’s appropriate for a 15-year-old to read?  Yeah.  Do I think it’s appropriate for a 12-year-old to read? Some 12-year-olds, sure.  My parents didn’t give a flip what I read, but they wouldn’t let me watch the movie Little Darlings.  Is it worse to learn about sex from a book or from watching it on tv?

Since I got that review I toned a few things down in Glimmer, but probably do need to suggest that people under 13 have a parent check it out first.  As far as changing the cover?  I love the cover and want all the books in the trilogy to have a similar feel, so I don’t think I’ll be going in a new direction with that.  I think Glimpse would get even more lost in the shuffle if the cover looked like all the other Twilight and Vampire Diaries rip-offs, y’know?

I’d be especially interested in hearing what my friends with 10-12-year old daughters have to say on the subject.  I know a couple of you let them read Glimpse and they enjoyed it.  I gave it to my 10-year-old niece for her birthday, but told her her mom had to read it first. 🙂 I wonder if my test should be, “Did you read Breaking Dawn?  Did you notice that the characters had sex?”  If they were bummed by the scene, then Glimmer is for them, if not they might want to wait a couple of years.

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4 thoughts on “The luckiest park bench

  1. Hmm…being the stepmom of a teenager, I don’t want to delude myself into thinking “Oh no. He’s totally still a virgin!”, but really? Really? Remember when we were teenagers? Um yeah. I was a church-chick too, and there was a lot of the sexy going on in the youth group stuff. And nowadays? Kids are probably lucky to get to the age of 15 without having sex! (shhh…no moms reading please)

    I think that’s one of the biggest stigmas we, as a society, have still to this day. Yes, our kids are having sex. Deal. Maybe we should try to educate them, instead of using the fear-tactic stuff against them. No one wants to talk to their parents about sex. Ugh. But an open and honest relationship is extremely helpful in guiding them into who they will become as adults.

    Me: I just tell him I’m too young to be a grandma.

  2. I just think sex needs to be written realistically as well as romantically. Seriously, it hurts to lose your virginity, let’s not pretend it doesn’t. But, y’know, here’s an example of a nice boyfriend who cares about you and is not a creepy stalker guy. LOL

  3. Just wanted to chime in on my review your talking about:-) So, after reading this I took the book to my Cheerleading practice. I am the coach for a cheer team of 19 girls ages 13-16. Most of them are 14-15. I asked them what they thought of the cover and they all said it was cute and it really is. However, most of them said they would pass it up because it looks like it is for a little kid. So then I read them the park bench scene and of coarse they giggled and acted all innocent (however with the way some of them dress I know better)! No surprise the ones that actually read have read much more descriptive stuff. They all said they were now interested in reading the book but only because I talked about it. However, then I took the book over to our Midget squad (ages 10-13) and when they saw the cover every single one of them liked the cover and had a bunch of questions on what the book was about. They are so much sweeter at that age than my smart mouth diva squad! Now as for reading them the park bench scene well I was not gonna do that. One they aren’t my squad and I don’t know their parents but mostly I could not justify it. I have 3 teenage boys ages 15, 15 and 14. Believe me I know they hear and read about sex. I get so stressed out when they want to go off with a girl. I’m way to young to be a Granny! So I guess what I’m trying to say is that the cover will attract a younger crowd of around 10-13. Personally, I would not want my tween reading this with out me reading it first to be prepared for questions. However, that is a personal choice because I have teenagers and have to deal with so much sexual stuff they have access to. Again, I personally loved the book and think it is fine for teenagers. I think you have to ask yourself if you were in front of a group of 10-13 year old girls would you feel comfortable reading that scene? Maybe? Maybe not. I know I could not read it to them. I just think the cover is going to attract the younger girls. Which is fine if that is what your aiming for. And yes I was 15 and do remember what I did in the 90’s and I really think I’m getting paid back. Maybe that is why I’m more sensitive to the sexual scenes because I think kids are bombarded with the stuff and I KNOW what they do if given the opportunity. Again, LOVED the book and I’m sure it will be a big hit.

    1. Sandy,
      I really appreciated your review and in truth, had never considered that the cover seems geared toward younger girls. Thanks for basically conducting a focus group for me! 🙂 When I started writing Glimpse I was really writing it for women our age and older teens. All the same people that like Twilight and Vampire Academy and so on. I didn’t really consider that it would be read by tweens-although a few of my friends daughters have read it-as have they. Now I’m going to have to figure out how I can keep the cover for Glimmer similar to Glimpse, but maybe more telling. It might also help that now I have some reviews under my belt from romance sites that I can blurb on the back cover. Lots to think about.

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