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Hatchet (Gary Paulsen) as discussed by Lindsay Cummings

Today, as author Lindsay Cummings waits for her thrilling new ya book The Murder Complex to be published, she stops by to write a Why YA? post about a book that means a lot to her.  You can write one too.

Everyone reads, at some point in their life.

Some of us read in school. Some of us hate it. Some of us love it.

Some of us, like me, can remember the very first time a book reached into their soul and grabbed a hold of them.

It started with picture books. Chapter books. I liked reading, I really did, but it hadn’t hit me yet. It hadn’t sucked me in and refused to let me go…Until I found THE book.

It was the one that changed everything. The one that made me a believer  in the fact that impossible things could be defeated.

The book was HATCHET, by Gary Paulsen.

I started reading. I was horrified by the plane crash, entranced by the wilderness, and completely floored by the fact that a boy on his own, a boy MY age, could survive.
“Patience, he thought. So much of this was patience – waiting, and thinking and doing things right. So much of all this, so much of all living was patience and thinking.”  (from Hatchet by Gary Paulsen)

The writing was real. It made me feel things, and it hit me where it hurt, where it mattered most- right in the heart.
And after that, I couldn’t stop reading. I couldn’t stop signing myself up for these magical journeys that would transport me away from my confusing, teenaged world ,and drop me into entirely new ones where anything was possible.  Where I could be a girl who kissed vampires (oh, Edward), or a boy whose magic saved the world, or a girl with a bow and a mockingjay pin whose rebellion and courage had the power to change EVERYTHING.

YA is magical. It is real, because to teens, the world is a horrifying and beautiful place all at once. YA is what takes us from our experiences in the scariest years of our lives, when we don’t even know who we are, when we don’t even know what we will become or where we will be in the future, and throws us into a time and place where anything is possible. YA gives readers hope. It gives readers excitement. When you’re a teen, everything matters. Everything is the best day and the worst day all at once. The tiniest of choices can affect you for the rest of your life.

And YA harnesses that magic. It makes it beautiful, and available, and addicting. It is powerful, and flawed, and redeeming, and exactly the way life should be- a thrilling journey.

I read and write YA because I love being a young adult. Reading YA makes me  feel something real. It makes me a part of something powerful, something perfect, and something far more exciting than the ups and downs of everyday life.

Why YA? Because life is short, and I want to read the best of the best. There is NO better way to do it than diving into the pages of a YA book.

About Lindsay Cummings

Lindsay Cummings is a 20-year-old author of dark futuristic thriller books for Young Adults. Her first blood-soaked novel, THE MURDER COMPLEX, as well as its sequel, are coming soon from Greenwillow Books/HarperCollins. Lindsay deals with chronic fatigue, can’t get enough of her two pesky German Shepherds, and is currently trying to become like one of her book characters by training in Mixed Martial Arts. She’s still waiting on her letter from Hogwarts–it was probably just lost in the mail. She loves Jesus and believes all of her success is His doing! You can follow Lindsay on twitter @lindsaycwrites ! She’s always on, and loves to chat!
You can also find Lindsay on YouTube and Facebook
Find out about author Lindsay Cummings and what happens at The Murder Complex at her website.