Welcome to DystopYA: the Books on the Nightstand reading challenge for Dystopic Young Adult fiction.
If you’ve read any of my posts or listened to our podcast lately, you know that I’m going through a ‘dystopic fiction’ phase. Some of the best books have been published as young adult novels. I find that they can stand side by side with the best adult fiction, and in many cases the stripped down language and precise writing fit the landscape of the book itself.
What is dystopic fiction? Wikipedia defines it as:
The utopia and its offshoot, the dystopia, are genres of literature that explore social and political structures. Utopian fiction is the creation of an ideal world, or utopia, as the setting for a novel. Dystopian fiction is the opposite: creation of a nightmare world, or dystopia. Many novels combine both, often as a metaphor for the different directions humanity can take in its choices, ending up with one of two possible futures. Both utopias and dystopias are commonly found in science fiction and other speculative fiction genres, and arguably are by definition a type of speculative fiction.
Suggested title list:
Here are some suggested titles in the category of Dystopic YA Fiction. These are books that we have read or that have been recommended to us by trusted booksellers. We talk about several of these books in Episode 47 of the Books on the Nightstand podcast.
Feed by M.T. Anderson
Candor by Pam Bachorz
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins (the sequel to The Hunger Games)
The Maze Runner by James Dashner
Gone by Michael Grant
The Giver by Lois Lowry
The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan
House of Stairs by William Sleator
Uglies by Scott Westerfield
There are always rules in dystopic societies. We will be benevolent despots in the running of this challenge. Your participation is voluntary and we will be deactivating the Reading Challenge Police, so you are on the honor system.
1. You must do as you are told. You are hereby commanded to read 3 works of dystopic fiction that were written or published primarily for young adults. A partial list of titles is above; you may choose other books that are not on this list. Books must be read between October 5, 2009 and December 31, 2009 in order to count for the challenge.
2. Secret activities are forbidden in dystopic societies. You must post your reading list and/or your review(s) of the books that you’ve read. Reviews can be formal or informal, as you like. You may post them one at a time or all at once, it’s up to you. If you have a blog, please post there. If you do not have a blog, there are two options:
- A. (Preferred) – use one of the special discussion threads we’ve set up on Facebook or Goodreads. Note: Facebook membership is required to post there, but anyone can read the messages. Goodreads requires you to be a member to post or read on the discussion board. Membership to both Facebook and Goodreads is free.
3. A dystopic society controls the spread of information among its citizens. If you have teens or tweens in your life, tell them about this reading challenge, and consider doing it together.
4. Dystopic governments control your behavior with a system of rewards. So, there will be prizes!We’ll do a random drawing from all participants at the end of the challenge.
5. Dystopic governments can track the identities of community members. Post the URL of your list/review in the Simply Linked box below. If you posted at Goodreads or Facebook, include the URL of the discussion post.
If you’ve chosen to post your list/review in the comments section below, you can still use the Simply Linked feature. Just type your name in the “Link Title” box followed by the word “comments” in parentheses, like this: Ann Kingman (comments) so that readers know that your reviews are at the end of this post. You can put anything in the in the URL box, it just can’t be left blank.
This will give everyone an easy way to read your reviews, and will make the random drawing for the contest prize easier.
Need a button for your blog? Grab this one:
Our community begins on October 5, 2009. Will you be one of us?
(note: I just learned of another Dystopian YA Fiction Challenge over at Bart’s Bookshelf. That meanst that you can knock off two challenges at the same time, though Bart’s starts on October 15th. Go check out his challenge and sign up over there, too!)