The title of this post comes from a catchy song from a little musical called Hairspray. Bright colors, big hair, and racial injustice are all themes in this particular show, featuring a decade that we see a lot in books and movies. And one that I am absolutely fascinated with. After reading Kissing Shakespeare, I thought more about about time travel in books and how it helps us to learn about these certain time periods and keeps us engaged in the past.
I don’t read enough books that fit in this in-between category of historical fiction and contemporary. Perhaps this is why I am so excited about Not Exactly a Love Story by Audrey Couloumbis, scheduled to release in December. It’s set in 1977. Then there was Other Words for Love by Lorraine Zago Rosenthal set in the 1980s and Supergirl Mixtapes by Meaghan Brothers set during the 1990s.
See? They are out there if you look for them!
Strange discovery… these three books are set in New York.
So what time period would I like to see in the YA genre?
Let’s go back to that title song, and I’ll let you guess.
Just by chance I read an AWESOME adult fiction book called Comeback Love this week that alternated between present and the 60s. War, women’s rights, Woodstock, the works. And since reading Danielle Steel’s Message from Nam when I was 14 — a book that chronicles through the 60s and 70s… I would love to see this kind o f YA in my hands. (P.S. For those of you romance genre fans, I love me some Danielle Steel. Ultra classy and really engaging/non-formulaic material.)
Not to mention, the music is pretty fantastic. The Beatles, Elvis, Mamas and Papas… (I used to steal my dad’s Billboard charts CD from 1963 all the time.) I can’t think of this time period without hearing “California Dreamin'”.
Intrigue, war, freedom, the arts, the fashion, “make love not war” … there is so much to be uncovered about this decade and I’d love to “travel” back to relive it in a young adult novel.
It’s easy enough to have a book set in a certain year, but it’s another to have it act as another character driving the plot of the story.
So tell me… have I missed a YA set in the 60s like that? And most importantly, what time period would you like to see represented in your reading?