Investigated – Why Do You Read?

Posted October 14, 2013 by Emily in Investigated / 1 Comment


To celebrate Teen Read Week, I thought I should do a post on why I read, and more specifically, why I read YA.

I’ve thought about this question a lot but I still can’t really give an answer that completely makes sense. More the most part, I read as an attempt to escape every day life and the problems that come with it. The pressures of parents to do well in school, the pressure of peers and friends to act a certain way, do a certain thing, the stress that comes with being a high school student… Reading has always been my outlet I guess. Some kids sing, some dance, some make art, I read. Reading always manages to make me feel better (by letting me temporarily forget about my problems) and unless it’s a really really bad book, I am able to let go of some of the negative emotions that come with life. I’ll read so I can forget about the real world and spend time in a made up one.

While there are times when I read books to escape reality, there are also times when I read for entertainment and pleasure (if you don’t count that as trying to escape reality). Instead of watching movies or TV shows, I’ll rather read because then I am able to interrupt a story the way I want to – not the way a director did. There’s more freedom to reading than there is with other types of media.

Asking me why I read young adult is kind of like asking adults why they read adult books or children why they read juvenile books. I read YA because I am a high school student, a teenager. And guess what? YA usually has teenagers as main characters. I read because the characters are easy to connect to, to understand, after all, I have to go through some of the things they do, like self discovery for example.

I feel that understanding characters, the way they feel, why they feel that way, and where they are coming from is a key aspect of understanding the story and the importance of certain actions. I read YA because it is interesting to me, because it is relevant to me. Because of that, it is easy for me to care about the story and the characters in it. Am I going to completely understand the struggles of a character to pay her rent? Not really mainly because I don’t pay my parents rent so I don’t have to worry about that and never have (yet). But am I going to understand the struggles of a kid starting school as the new kid? Yes. Why? Because I’ve been there, done that. Understanding is a step towards to caring. You have to understand in order to care.

Another reason why I read about YA is because there are a lot of books that tell the stories of kids my age who have been dealt a worse card in fate than I have. But instead of whining and complaining about it, they suck it up and make the best with that they have. It’s inspiring. It’s motivating. There are more emotions involved.

So now that you know why I read, why do you read?
And if you read YA, why do you?



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One response to “Investigated – Why Do You Read?

  1. My answer for the first question is the exact same as yours, but my answer to the second is a bit different. I started to read when I felt alone, I’m an only child so that was pretty often. I read YA because it seems like the only genre I can really enjoy, although I am in college now xD