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Albert Camus

Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.

Monday, May 11, 2015

things couldn’t get worse, but they do - Destroyed (Dark Road #1) by Krys Fenner

Bella has lived a rather boring life, but that all quickly changes. A new position in school forces her to take charge. A new boyfriend (her first), Jeremiah, hands her a confidence she has never known before. A new role in her church’s Fall Production makes her a leader.

Description:

Bella has lived a rather boring life, but that all quickly changes. A new position in school forces her to take charge. A new boyfriend (her first), Jeremiah, hands her a confidence she has never known before. A new role in her church’s Fall Production makes her a leader. But that all gets destroyed when an attack by her father’s enemy turns her into the center of attention. Bella believes things couldn’t get worse, but they do. Can she survive the road of destruction and emerge stronger? Or has all that she gained been destroyed forever?

GUEST POST
How Far is Too Far for YA Psychological Thrillers? 

In order to accurately answer this question, the first thing an author has to do is understand what is considered Young Adult (YA). Then and only then can we really get into the specifics of how far YA can go as a psychological thriller. Now there is some discrepancy on the age range for YA. The American Library Association considers the YA audience to be between the ages of twelve and eighteen. However, most authors and readers will define the age range from sixteen to twenty-five. For arguments sake, let’s place our range from twelve to thirty.

How far is too far when it comes to a psychological thriller for YA? This was something I had to take into serious consideration as I wrote Destroyed. I knew there was a great possibility a twelve year old could pick up this book written about a sixteen year old girl who is traumatized by rape. Questions I asked myself: do I include the rape scene? If so, how much? And how evil do I make the villain? Where do I draw the line on the bad guy? 

When I was teenager, a story that not only talked about rape, but detailed the occurrence would be highly unacceptable. Of course, when I was a teen, it was highly unlikely you would hear about a twelve year old giving birth. Since then the ugliness in our world has received more and more light. Still, twelve year olds in most cases have an innocence that should be retained. Now, I took all of this into consideration as I wrote Destroyed. And I quickly concluded that there was no way any part of my novel should be read by a twelve year old. However, a fifteen/sixteen year old is a different story. 

There is some wiggle room, but not much. What I would write directed at a fifteen/sixteen year old verses a thirty year old (although many do read YA) is very distinct. For me two things were necessary so the line wasn’t crossed. One, the bad guy had to be easily construed as evil. There has to be no possible way he can be identified as good or someone who should be trusted. Two, the depravity in the novel should be in small doses. Give enough information about the villain through the eyes of other characters for the readers to know he is psychotic. This way when the reader gets an actual glimpse into his mind, they’re somewhat prepared for the depths of his psychosis. 

Now, in no way does this mean there aren’t psychological stories that can’t be written for YA intended to be read by twelve year olds. While things like depression and grief are safe topics, the hard subjects (rape survival, drug abuse, suicide, cutting, anorexia/bulimia) can be put into words for a twelve year old to read, but they have to be glossed over and very carefully constructed. This is where I believe novels like Speak and Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson work well. The horrific event has already occurred. The story deals more with coping and that is mostly safe for any psychological book directed at the younger end of YA. 

These are still hard topics and they must be treated with the utmost care for someone as young as twelve to read.

TOUR SCHEDULE
Destroyed is on sale through 5/15/15 and a portion of the proceeds is be donated to Women's Center of Jacksonville.
About the author:
At the age of 16, Krys Fenner fell in love with Psychology and Creative Writing. At that time she wrote her first short story dealing with sexual abuse and forgiveness. Psychological issues in her family filled her with the desire to help others using her own experiences. So in 2004, she earned an Associate of Arts in Psychology. And while her sister is the one with dreams of becoming a Psychologist, Krys Fenner returned to Creative Writing. She is currently working on a Bachelor of Arts and plans to continue on to a Masters degree, where she can major in her first love (Creative Writing) and minor in her second (Psychology).

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5 comments:

Giselle said...

Thanks for hosting today, Cremona! :)

Krys Fenner said...

Thanks for being a stop on the tour!

Juana said...

I would love to read this story, and have added it to my book wishlist.

Jan Lee said...

My niece is 14 and she may like to read this story. I'd love to win her a copy of the book :)

Dan said...

This story sounds good. I love a good thriller!