Diverse books are important. Reading diverse is important. Representing all human beings is important.
And I feel many books are getting better at being diverse, especially in the YA genre. Finally, because I can’t really phantom why a lot of books struggle to represent minorities. When I go about my day, I see and speak so many different kinds of people, but lot of books still don’t reflect that. And they should! Let’s talk about all the different human beings. Make your books relatable and don’t be scared to talk about taboo-topics. (Because, you know, that’s how they become less taboo).
And like I said, while we are definitely not where we’re supposed to be yet, diversity is becoming a bit more prominent. Progress! But there is something that bothers me about a lot of diverse books being published right now.
A lot of diverse characters are defined by their diversity.
And I also want to read books where diversity is a part of the character, but it’s not the entire character. I want books like: ”Oh yes, this is my best friend Tim, he is bipolar. But hey we are going to save the world now.”
I feel like most books that represent diversity are all about the diverse aspect: “And this is a story about a blind girl and how goes about her life” etc.
And it’s not that I don’t want to read books where diversity is the main aspect in the story. I do want to read about that, but I also want to read books where the diverse aspects are there, but it is not the main point of the book. Because while diverse aspects are an important part of – in my opinion – any book, it shouldn’t be the driving force of every book. Characters are more than just their diverse aspect. Real, relatable human beings are certainly diverse, but aren’t just defined by their diversity, all the time.
It’s not about adding diversity for the sake of diversity, it’s about subtracting similarity and uniformity for the sake of realism and representation.
I want to pick up thrillers and mystery’s and fantasy’s and science fiction books with diverse characters. And right now, I feel like most diverse books are contemporary’s where the diverse aspect is the main point of the story. And I want to read both!
Bottom line: I want both kinds. I want books where diverse/minority characters feature the book, and I want adventures and fantasy with those characters but with their issues as part of the story, not the entire story.