Better as an adult book

Use this forum to discuss the February 2020 Book of the month, "Opaque" by Calix Leigh-Reign
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Re: Better as an adult book

Post by Kansas City Teacher »

Nym182 wrote: 06 Feb 2020, 15:28 One of the thoughts that kept occurring to me as I read this book was that Opaque would have been much better if it was not a YA book.

I dig gritty and dark books like anything by Bret Easton Elis or Stephen King, so when it turned as dark as it did I had mixed feelings. I enjoyed it but did not think that it fit in a YA book.

Between the darkness of Adam and the sexual undertones, I really think that Leigh-Reign would have made a much better book if she had leaned into the darkness. It would have made the strange sexual parts of the book less strange, especially if they were expanded on. I didn't like the scenes where Adam watches Carly wash or Carly's admittance that she wore socks to prevent stirring up Kane's foot fetish (what high schooler has a foot fetish?) in the context of a story about high schoolers.

Do you think writing it a YA book held the author back? Would you have preferred to read this as a sci-fi thriller?
What good insights you have! Although the mood (especially at the beginning) was creepy, I don't think many students would have been scared or turned off. However, they are still impressionable. I like what you said about making is a YA book could have held the author back.
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Post by Amanda Newton »

I agree that I would have liked to see a more adult kind of approach taken where things didn't have to be watered down so much. There's only so much you can water down a plot before you wash it all away
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Post by Jennashby_87 »

I definitely agree. Just because the characters in this book are in high school does not mean that this book should be included in the YA genre. It is definitely an adult book and it definitely has some pretty racy topics in it that are not for everyone.
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Post by Bergahitaxxxxla »

I think its disturbing that the characters are high schoolers yet the underlying tones of the book are sexual and violent.
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Post by Faithmwangi »

Noe that I think about, the author did limit herself by making this a YA's book. The darkness was also a bit too much for a younger audience.
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Post by Firefawkes »

I too relish in a darker (but well-written) fantasy book. Had the author built upon her ideas more and did not try to keep it in the YA genre it could have been even better!
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Post by Bookreviwer2020 »

I think sexual references and references to body parts and desires were what made it a bit inappropriate for young adult readers. Also some violence and swearing. I guess the fact that the main characters were two teenagers in high school Is what made it suitable for that age group
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Post by Odette Chace »

I think perhaps it would have been a better, more rounded story, but as I prefer YA books to sci-fi thrillers, I'm not sure I would have enjoyed the story going in that direction. Rather, I would have been happier if those parts were just not included at all.
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Post by memalescole75 »

I'd would not recommend this book to my teens, even though there is redemption in the end. The early chapters are disturbing.
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Post by MK_Lexington »

I agree, just because the main characters are of that age group,I don't think that this book should be in the YA category. I don't think it's age appropriate for the YA category, especially because the first few chapters can be dark and disturbing for anyone to read, not just teenagers.
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Post by Carolreads30 »

Although I have not read this book, the reviews that I have read of it and from what others are saying, I am sure that it needs to change the way the book is listed. It should be adult only, not a YA as those books should not include kidnapping, rape, etc.
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Post by Daniel_ »

I quite agree with you on this; the sexual content/undertone is inappropriate for YA readers.
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Post by tsh1001 »

I agree...this style of book in a sci-fi genre instead of YA really could have given it wings! You are right with sexual undertones being awkward in a YA genre novel, it seems as if the author really could have gone for it if it hadnt been YA.
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Post by Reina275 »

I couldn't agree more with you, it would be better if it was an adult book, a lot of scenes were disturbing and the characters had some concerning behaviours. :|
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Post by Rosemary Okoko »

I think the age of the characters is no reason to classify it in the YA genre. Sci-fi thriller would be most appropriate.
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