Saturday, January 30, 2021

New book release: Young Adult Gothic Fiction

I have an co-edited collection entitled Young Adult Gothic Fiction: Monstrous Selves, Monstrous Others about to be published in June by University of Wales Press. It's packed with wonderful essays from children's literature friends old and new. I've written a chapter with my co-editor Kristine Moruzi on the intersection of fairy tale with YA Gothic, which I think is one of the first takes on the intersection of these three areas.

This collection is the first to focus exclusively on twenty-first-century young adult Gothic fiction. The essays demonstrate how the contemporary resurgence of the Gothic signals anxieties about (and hopes for) young people in the twenty-first century. Changing conceptions of young adults as liminal figures, operating between the modes of child and adult, can be mobilised when combined with Gothic spaces and concepts in texts for young people. In young adult Gothic literature, the crossing of boundaries typical of the Gothic is often motivated by a heterosexual romance plot, in which the human or monstrous female protagonist desires a boy who is not her ‘type’. Additionally, as the Gothic works to define what it means to be human – particularly in relation to gender, race, and identity – the volume also examines how contemporary shifts and flashpoints in identity politics are being negotiated under the metaphoric cloak of monstrosity.


1. Introduction: Kristine Moruzi and Michelle J. Smith

Section 1: Genre Trouble: Gothic Hybrids

2. Zombies Vs Unicorns: An Exploration of the Pleasures of the Gothic for Young Adults – Patricia Kennon

3. Genre Mutation and the Dialectic of YA Gothic Dystopia in Holly Black’s The Coldest Girl in Coldtown – Bill Hughes

Section 2: Rewriting the Historical Gothic

4. ‘Vanguard taste and fashion spirit’: Feminist Responses to Twenty-First Century, Western Zeitgeist in Vampire Romeo and Juliet texts – Sarah Olive

5. The Pre-Monstrous Mad Scientist and the Post-Nerd Smart Girl in Kenneth Oppel’s Frankenstein Series – Sean P. Connors and Lissette Lopez Szwydky

6. Rock Star Rochester and Heartthrob Heathcliff: The Problematic Redemption of the Byronic Hero in Recent Young Adult Retellings of Brontë Novels – Sara K. Day

Section 3: Gothic Places

7. Monstrous Islands: Spatiality and the Abjection of Motherhood in Gothic Young Adult Fiction – Cecilia Rogers

8. Adolescence Adrift: The Lost Child in Contemporary Australian Gothic YA Fiction – Adam Kealley

Section 4: The Human and the Non-Human

9. Accepting Monsters: The Visual Gothic in I Kill Giants and A Monster Calls – Debra Dudek

10. Unhuman Entanglement: Onto-Ethics and the Fiction of Frances Hardinge – Chloé Germaine Buckley

11. Black and White and Read All Over: Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children, Gothic Imagery and Posthuman Publishing – Jen Harrison

Section 5: Gothic Femininities

12. Testimony from Beyond the Grave: Comparing Girls’ Narratives of Sexual Violence and Death in Gothic Fiction – Lenise Prater

13. Young Adult Gothic Fairy Tales and Terrifying Romance – Michelle J. Smith and Kristine Moruzi