I’m hosting a guest post for the book tour for “Orange Blossom”, a new adult contemporary romance novel. Enjoy the guest post.
Guest Post: Why New Adult?
New Adult is a weird distinction. I feel like it’s used more for marketing purposes, but so few of the books I have read with the label seem to speak to the real concerns of people in that age range. How many kids just out of high school or college are worried about BDSM billionaires, really? Am I living in the wrong area? I don’t seem to see that as a common concern.
What I do see people struggling with is choosing a major, falling in love, being an adult separated from their past or their families, worrying about marriage and kids and bills. Sure, these may not be the most interesting things to read about, but I don’t write books as escapism. I don’t read books for escapism. I read because I think that books have a way to allow us to feel less alone. We are part of a universal experiment, as human beings just trying to find our way, and books help us to see that others, maybe in different geographic locations or of different ages or genders or backgrounds, feel the same way.
I have a lot of experience working with young people, both in high school and college settings and with people of those ages. I love YA fiction. For me, New Adult was an extension of that. It was a chance to up the stakes. I don’t think YA fiction is not real fiction. It’s my favorite, really, but in publishing it, there are things to consider. For instance, there could be a 12-year-old reading the book. Is it too much for someone that young? (Personally, I don’t feel that way, since I read VC Andrews, Stephen King, Danielle Steel, etc. at 10 and 11, but others feel kids should be sheltered from reality.) I don’t think swearing or violence or sex or drug use are things to avoid in books, because they happen. Books are not like movies; they are not passive. A reader who gets through the entirety of a book like Game of Thrones can handle anything within, but that’s a different argument for a different day.
In writing New Adult, I wanted to deal with those issues, when there was no safety net. At 17, you can be depressed, be in therapy, be sexually active, etc., but most people at that age still have the safety of youth on their side. Parents, social workers, teachers, SOMEONE is there to help you pick up the pieces. Suddenly, though, you turn 18 and everyone just looks at you like, “well, you’re on your own. Figure it out.” There’s no switch, of course, and your problems don’t make sense or get easier on that day. So what happens when the people who didn’t learn those coping skills are sent off to cope? That was a big part of this series and my take on the New Adult distinction.
Author: Sarah Daltry
“I’ve never understood a year. A year was always a measurement of something bad for me. A year in my father’s prison sentence, a year since my mom’s death, a year left of school before I could get far, far away from here. Now, as I look down the end of my college career, with only a little more than a semester to go, a year seems like something magical. It has been a year since Lily chose me, since she sat with me on the old swing set and made a decision that I was worthy of her. And every minute of the entire year has been better than the last.”
You already know their stories: Lily, the perfect princess, always living someone else’s life. And Jack, the broken boy, who had stopped believing in hope. Somehow, though, they found each other and what was one night blossomed into a love story.
Now, a year later, Jack and Lily are dreaming of the future. Despite all of his promises to himself that he would never be indebted to anyone, Jack makes a new promise – this time to Lily – that he will be there for her forever. But when life unravels for them, he starts to pull away, and Lily worries he’s out of reach for good.
When Jack does the unthinkable, Lily is left destroyed. Is it possible to have a happily ever after? Does love ever really save anyone?