book boyfriend, love interest or villain; these are the main aspects in which we see men (or boys) in young adult books. in the most popular books/series, the main characters are female (the most common case in a sixteen years old teenager). but where are men as main characters in young adult books?
on twitter, i asked what are some books in which the main character is male, and not female, and i kept receiving the following answers:
- The Maze Runner by James Dashner
- Half Bad by Sally Green
- Simon VS The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
i’ve also received Percy Jackson as an answer, but i think it’s more counted as a middle grade series than a young adult one (please correct me if i’m wrong). i think that’s the problem: there are TONS of male main characters in middle grade books, but then we find a lack of them in young adult books.
i don’t say that there isn’t young adult books where the main character is male, but there usually isn’t a lot of hype around them, and most of the time not a lot of people know about these books.
one of the other type of answers i’ve received is split point of views books, like All The Bright Places, An Ember In The Ashes and Six of Crows. however, i think it isn’t enough.
there isn’t just girls in the book community, there are also boys. and these boys surely want to relate to what they’re reading. and they certainly won’t feel connected to characters in novels if all they’re reading about is girls. they DO have the right to fall in love with the love interest as much as girls do, and maybe even pick their favorite out of them. and how do you think that is possible? by simply showing more importance to young adult books with male main characters.
i do believe we need more men as main characters in books, and not just split point of views, but full attention on them.
we talk about diversity, and yet we still scrutinize one of the main aspects in it: diversity in gender.