In response to a rather skewed article on Slate.com about whether or not adults should be reading YA books, I decided to run my own poll and see exactly who is reading YA, how old those readers are, and why they choose to do so. Some of the results were pretty much what I expected to find, but I was surprised by some of them as well. I want to thank everyone who participated in this poll, and I’m curious to hear what you think of the results. And by the way, this is my first attempt at creating pie charts, which was a lot more fun than I expected! (However, it’s a fairly time-consuming exercise, in case you want to try it yourself. I used the site Online Chart Tool which is free and has lots of options.) Please remember that this poll only represents the opinions of the group of readers who chose to take the poll, so the results may be skewed.
So here we go, the results of my poll:
This is the age break-down of the people who took the poll. These results were what I expected, and I’m especially happy to see that I have some over 40 readers! (since that’s my age group:-)) Not surprisingly, no one under 13 took this poll.
This question is similar to the first one, but I wanted to narrow the field to those poll-takers who actually read YA.
Now I’m breaking it down by age group, so you can see what each group is reading. This doesn’t surprise me. Most 18-22 year-olds are reading YA.
In your 20s, most readers are still reading lots of YA. Strangely, no one who took the survey in this category reads exclusively adult books.
Of those who took the poll, no one in their 30s reads exclusively YA. That doesn’t surprise me, but the fact that so few readers in their 30s read only adult does surprise me!
We have a very evenly divided response to the over 40 readers, but no one answered that they read either type of book exclusively.
The winner in this category? Most YA readers find the plots and characters more engaging. I’m not sure what this means, but in my opinion, adult readers of YA are seeking some kind of escape from more serious adult books. I also find it interesting that a big chunk answered that they read YA because they are “easier.” Quite a number clicked the “other” box, and I’d be curious to hear what “other” is if you’re one of those people.
Wow, check it out! So, at least from the group who participated, adults reading YA is the norm. The other answer to this question, which garnered 0%. was “I am an adult who loves YA but keeps it to myself. I’m embarrassed.” Clearly most folks who read YA are proud to share their love!
And finally, this is how everyone felt about this question:
It’s obvious that the blogger from the Slate.com article didn’t take my poll! Because everyone agreed that you should read whatever you want, no matter your age.
So what does all this tell us? In a nutshell, YA is taking over the world! At least in the blogging community, that is. More writers than ever are dipping into the YA pool, because they have something they want to say that fits the demographic.
Now it’s your turn to sound off. What do you think of these results? And what is your opinion about the whole adults who read YA debate?