ANALYSIS: The Teen Brain on Rage: How It's Different
Forty years ago, there was no such thing as young-adult literature, according to a Wall Street Journal article that evoked lots of buzz last year. Today, books for teens and preteens regularly include stories of murder, suicide, vampires, kidnapping, rape, drug overdoses and worse.
Suzanne Collins, author of the "Hunger Games" trilogy, believes that books like hers are an important way to teach kids about the harsh realities of war and violence before they inevitably experience these themes in their own lives.
"If we wait too long, what kind of expectation can we have?" she told The New York Times. "We think we're sheltering them, but what we're doing is putting them at a disadvantage."
With the way our society is structured today, it's only natural that books like the "The Hunger Games" have become popular, added children's literature expert Anita Silvey in an interview with National Public Radio.
"Reality TV has gone lower and lower every season," Silvey told NPR. "We are sending our young people to the other side of the world to kill young people. And children and teens are killing each other in schools. When you have all those elements to throw in the cauldron of story, I don't think it's surprising that 'The Hunger Games' comes out of that."