Local teenage girls, adult women drawn to variety of books
Popular genres include romance, suspense, social issues
January 14, 2009
Popular authors and genres for local women readers
• Stephenie Meyer, romance, paranormal
• Lauren Myracle, pre-teen and teenage issues
• Mary Downing Hahn, suspense
• Holly Black and Tony DiTerlizzi, fantasy
• Ellen Hopkins, social issues
• Jennifer Chiaverini, family issues
• Janet Evanovich, thriller
Romance. Suspense. Healthy eating. Aging well.
Books popular with adult and teenage women cover a wide spectrum of genres, said Christy Gonzales, programs coordinator at the Moffat County Libraries’ Craig branch.
Fiction books, in general, are a consistent favorite with teenage women.
“Young girls : want stories that are familiar to situations they’re dealing with in their daily lives,” Gonzales said. “But then, I think they also read : to escape to something different.”
Installments in Stephenie Meyer’s “Twilight” saga fall in the latter category.
Meyer’s local following is “huge,” she said.
The series currently includes four books – “Twilight,” “New Moon,” “Eclipse” and “Breaking Dawn” – that follow the romance between teenager Bella Swan and Edward Cullen, a vampire.
Interest in the series has dwindled since a movie based on “Twilight” debuted in November, Gonzales said.
Other fiction authors have begun vying – and winning – the hearts of young women readers.
Lauren Myracle, a Fort Collins-based author, has three books out that highlight experience common to pre-teens and teenagers. Her books “Eleven,” “Twelve” and “Thirteen” are well liked by young readers, Gonzales said.
She added that Myracle’s popularity also could have something to do with her Colorado roots.
Mary Downing Hahn, another popular young adult author, puts out more spine-tingling tales.
“A lot of the spookier Mary Downing Hahn books get checked out,” Gonzales said.
“The Spiderwick Chronicles,” a fantasy series written by Holly Black and illustrated by Tony DiTerlizzi, “fly off the shelves,” she added.
Local adult women gravitate to a wider range of books.
They also enjoy fiction, both romantic and suspenseful, Gonzales said, including Jennifer Chiaverini’s “Elm Creek Quilts” stories and Janet Evanovich’s thriller genre Stephanie Plum novels.
Local women readers don’t just gravitate to women authors. John Grisham and other male writers also are popular.
And they’re not only interested in fiction books.
“Cookbooks are huge,” Gonzales said, adding that books dealing with child-rearing also are favorites.
Downtown Books in Craig has noticed similar trends in youth and adult women readers.
Local teenage girls gravitate toward books featuring “paranormal romance,” said Caroline Dotson, Downtown Books co-owner.
Other popular books sold at the store, however, deal with more serious topics.
Author Ellen Hopkins writes a series of books with terse titles like “Crank,” “Impulse” and “Glass” that cover a range of sobering topics, including drug abuse and self-inflicted wounds.
The books usually run about 500 pages in length but are quick reads “because they’re in this poetic, free-flowing form,” Dotson said.
Adult women’s reading preferences vary widely, she added.
As a general rule, though, two types of books are most popular.
“Lots of fiction, lots of mysteries,” Dotson said.
Bridget Manley can be reached at 875-1795 or email@example.com