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Well, I've just had a fun trip back through the blog archives. Let's rewind for a sec. The year is 2010, the YA paranormal explosion is in full swing, Lauren Oliver's Before I Fall is the book everyone's talking about, and somewhere out there, a lady named Veronica Roth is writing epic things about a girl named Tris and a boy named Four. But nobody has heard of Veronica Roth just yet. Oh, how things have changed...
There have been so, so many changes in the reading and blogging world in the past five years. I don't usually do much to celebrate milestones on this blog, but it's five years later, and I fancied a look through the archives, so here we go.
Here are five big changes in books and blogging that have happened in the past five years.
The Death of Paranormal Fiction.
OK, OK, Paranormal fiction hasn't, nor will it ever, die. But you have to admit that it's taken a back seat lately. Cast your mind five years back. Thanks to the success of Twilight Paranormal fiction was EVERYWHERE. When I started this blog I was hooked on Shiver, Hush Hush and Alyson Noel's The Immortals. I couldn't get enough of Vampires, Demons and Werewolves. Funnily enough, as I'm writing this, I'm actually reading a Paranormal YA - something I have done for ages now. So, maybe it's making a comeback already. Remember the Angel explosion in YA of a few years back - and the Fae. Remember when Faerie books where the hot new thing?! Vampires are still my faves, FYI. I'm old school like that. Although I'll have a forever soft spot for Cynthia Hand's angel-themed Unearthly series.
The Dystopian Fiction Explosion.
I just had a look through the Dystopian fiction archive on the blog, and let's just say that now I'm even more thankful for my guest reviewers! It's safe to say that I didn't really welcome the explosion in popularity of Dystopian fiction with open arms. I'm not a huge fan. I guess I just find it all so bleak and depressing. There are books that I like -even love- in the genre: Never Let Me Go is one of my all time faves, I loved The Hunger Games series (when I finally got around to reading it!) and I'm a big fan of Divergent (and Four) but as for the rest, I can take or leave them. I haven't read any Dystopian Fiction in ages - not since I finished Allegiant, and I think the genre is a little worn out these days. I remember the fanfare around the release of Delirium, Matched and all the rest: and it seemed that every day I had an email in my inbox heralding the arrival of the new Hunger Games. For me, of the Dystopian fiction I've read, Divergent is the only book that even comes close to THG. A lot of the Dystopian fiction I read was really, really slow moving, and well, boring.
eBooks and how Netgalley Changed Everything
Ha! So in my trip back through the archives I happened upon a post in which I announced I had no intention of ever getting an eReader, proudly declaring in my review policy that I did not accept eBooks, thank you very much. Then Netgalley happened, I read a few books on Adobe Digital Editions my computer, and decided that yeah, that wasn't going to work, and soon I was sitting pretty with my shiny new pink eReader. Remember the excitement when HarperTeen signed up to Netgalley? Remember the joy of auto-approval!! Of course, today we have Edelweiss too, but that wasn't around back then, it was just Netgalley. Oh, and Galley Grab - but that didn't stick around.
Before Netgalley we had book tours. Remember them? Wow. The days of book tours (and having a week to read the book before sending it on) seem so long ago!
UKYA Totally Arrived
So, I'm pretty sure UKYA existed five years ago, but back when I started blogging, I didn't really know about it. The first UKYA book I remember hearing about in any great detail or with any great social media fanfare was Cat Clarke's debut, Entangled. Nowadays, Cat Clarke, along with James Dawson, Sarah Alderson, Keren David and a whole host of others is a UKYA superstar and UKYA just seems to be growing in strength with each passing year. Also, in the past five years I've gone from reading absolute zero UKYA to counting down the days to certain releases: Dawn Kurtagich's The Dead House is top of my 2015 UKYA wish list. My all time UKYA faves are Cat Clarke's Undone and Cruel Summer by James Dawson. I also loved Lobsters by Lucy Ivison and Tom Ellen - such a great summer read!
New Adult Fiction Was the Hottest Thing Around.
New Adult Fiction or NA as we now know it arrived with a bang a few years back via the medium of self-publishing. New Adult fiction was fun, it was flirty and it was risque, crossing the PG boundaries of YA. I jumped on board, reading books by Molly McAdams, Tammara Webber, Cora Carmack and Colleen Hoover to name a few. Traditional publishers were quick to react: snapping up all these self-publishing superstars and their established fan bases. Suddenly NA was everywhere. Now, I'm not sure: I know Colleen Hoover is still really popular, but I have to admit that I haven't really been keeping tabs on NA. Most NA I read followed a formula, and I tired of it quickly. The only New Adult book I ever recommend as one of my favourites is Deeper by Robin York. During the NA Explosion years I read a lot of NA that was pretty, um, bad. This also happened with Paranormal YA during that explosion. Yikes. Let's not even go there.
There you have it. Five things that have changed in the world of books and blogging during the past five years. I hope you enjoyed this little trip down memory lane!
What major changes have you noticed in the world of books and blogging since those days of crazy Twilight fandom when we were all so obsessed with Rpattz's hair? Let me know in comments!