Parents are very important in YA novels.
Because who else is going to die on page 4 so the protagonist can go on a wild adventure? HAHAHA AHAHA! JUST KIDDING!
…Except also not really.
But that unfortunate truth aside, literary parents can be some of the most interesting people in a novel. This is because they leave us asking so many questions, like “why the heck didn’t you tell your kid they were a werewolf?? Maybe they wouldn’t freak out over shedding hair so much???”
And bookworms love asking questions and speculating and coming up with wildly improbably theories and then hankering desperately after prequel novels they don’t have and then kidnapping authors in order to force them to write these prequel parental novels for them. HAHAH HA HA HAHAHAH! JUST KIDDING YET AGAIN!!
(Except also not really.)
And since there are so many types of interesting YA parents, I thought we’d have a quick list of them first and then dive into my prequel wishlist. Ready for this? Of course you are. You were born ready, with cupcakes in your pocket and dreams to be a dread pirate.
- The parents who are dead before the story begins because ORPHAN AESTHETIC.
- The parents who die on page 2 because conflict.
- The parents who just aren’t around because how do you even write a parent it is so hard.
- The parents who are super cool and supportive and die on page 3 because conflict.
- HAHA JUST KIDDING YET AGAIN OMG! There are parents who are cool and supportive and live the entire book through. They are a rare species. Scientific surveys say they make up 1 in every 976 books.
- (Note: scientific surveys run by me are…sketchy. Let’s be real here. But take what you will.)
- Also the parents who run off because how do you even write a parent.
- And then the parents who die on page 4 because what the heck man.
- Then we have villain parents.
- And deluded parents.
- And parents who are good at making waffles, which is not a popular type but should be.
- And lastly we have the parents who are self-appointed and generally just teenagers but force their friends to take naps and babysit them and feed them smol sandwiches are known as Richard Gansey III, anxious mother of three boys and a bird. Bless him. My favourite.
Today I’m linking up with Top Ten Tuesday for their prompt “Mother’s Day related freebie” and I’m sure it counts if I list 10 YA parents I want prequel novels for. And if it doesn’t count, well my aesthetic is equal parts being a cake * and also a rebel rule breaker.
* No really, my 4 year old niece asked me if my name was actually Cake yesterday. They’re onto me. My feeble attempts at fitting in with the humans are failing.
1. MAURA FROM THE RAVEN CYCLE
If you thought I wasn’t going to mention Stiefvater books as many times as I can in this blog then — HA! YOU’RE NEW HERE, AND WELCOME TO MY OBSESSION. It’s subtle I’m sure.
I would love to know more about how Maura and Calla started their psychic business. Like when and where did Persephone come in? Did she always have wild hair? How did they end up in a house that is so amazing and mad and sprawling and inhabited with 3989 million people and so many pies? I want to know how Maura fell in love with Butternut. I want psychic origin stories dangit.
Or I just want infinitely more Stiefvater books???? Likely.
2. STARR’S PARENTS FROM THE HATE U GIVE
Don’t even pretend that Starr’s parents aren’t the cutest and most loving YA parents of ever BECAUSE THEY ABSOLUTELY ARE. Starr calls them her OTP and, duuuuuude, same. I’d love a story about her dad and his ex-gang life and how they met and the secret to why they’re so #fabulous.
3. VINCENTE FROM THE INEXPLICABLE LOGIC OF MY LIFE
Sal’s dad is so disgustingly nice it hurts. No really. Why is this dude so GOLDEN HEARTED??? If you spilled his cornflakes on purpose and sneered at him, he’d probably sit you down, look you in the eyes, and ask you what’s wrong while you had an emotional breakdown so he could pat your back, feed you homemade tacos, and make you into a better person.
Disgustingly nice I tell you.
We need books about nice literary YA parents.
HAHA! JOKING WITH YOU! One exists at least.
4. NICO’S DAD, HADES, FROM THE PERCY JACKSON SERIES
And knowing Rick Riordan who writes spin-offs of spin-offs then, MAYBE THIS WILL HAPPEN??!? I can put in a petition, right?? Sacrifice a blue coke to the pine trees or whatever. But excuse me while I just think Hades is really rather fascinating. He actually seems the most chill of the Big 3 Gods and wasn’t he wearing a Hawaiian shirt in one of the Percy Jackson books? I want to know more.
Basically I also just want dark books set in the underworld.
Was #3 actually about me saying I want books about nice parents or was that a typo? PROBABLY A TYPO. DOESN’T SOUND LKE ME AT ALL.
5. THE CAPTAIN FROM THE GIRL FROM EVERYWHERE
And, obviously, it’d be about his wife too — before she died. Because basically time-travelling ex-pirate ships are what everyone aspires to in life. * And this captain dude is so OBSESSED with getting his wife back, even at the risk of his daughter Nix’s life, that I want to know more about their relationship.
But I really actually just want to know all the things about how he got that time travelling ship.
Pirate ship > romance.
* Unless you aspire to own a castle with ceiling high bookshelves and those fun ladders that slide and spin? In which case I’ll forgive you for not caring about pirate ships. Although, really. Can’t you multitask? Sheesh.
6. NATHAN’S PARENTS IN HALF BAD
Because they were witches at war and it would’ve been such a NICE Romeo x Juliet story that ends in 500% blood and destruction. Lovely. Plus you know there’s that whole thing where Nathan’s dad eats people’s hearts and gets their powers so when did he start doing that and may we have a book of it???
And no I’m perfectly normal and kind I swear anything worrisome in this post is a typo.
7. CASSEL’S MOTHER IN WHITE CAT
Arguably Cassel’s mother is the worst. She’s a con-artist and has no shame and is magical and probably raised 3 psychopath sons. I have questions about her childhood and teenagerdom. I’m very interested.
And is this just me wanting more books about magical thieves?! HA! YOU SILLY CHILD!
(Yeah…you’re so right though.)
8. CLARY’S PARENTS IN THE MORTAL INSTRUMENTS
Because Valentine is a psychopath and what did Clary’s mother see in him?!? I WANT TO KNOW. I also want to know why he’s a psycho.
And considering Cassandra Clare is also notoriously good at writing spin-offs off of spin-offs (try saying THAT five times fast without spitting that cupcake you’re surely eating out over your screen) we might actually get this someday!
9. BOTH LUC AND LACE’S PARENTS AND GRANDPARENTS FROM THE WEIGHT OF FEATHERS
Because magical (!!) circus (!!) travelling (!!) people (!!) who make their living as birds and mermaids and are at lethal WAR with each other. I’m pretty sure they would happily turn each other into kebabs and then put those kebabs in a box and mail them to Guadeloupe for a turtle to eat. *
But basically I just want this author to write 938439 more books about Luc and Lace because they’re GORGEOUS. Did I mention this book is one of my favourites?!?? Luc has feathers in his hair and Lace sews mermaid tails and they are beautiful and damaged people who damaged my feels and I should be mad at them bUT I’M NOT.
* Sometimes I worry about how I get these tangent metaphorical thoughts too, it’s okay, you’re not alone in your concern about me.
10. SARAI’S PARENTS IN STRANGE THE DREAMER
Okay I’m massively cheating here because I’m actually STILL READING THIS RIGHT NOW. I’m listening to the audiobook so it’s slow going but afjdskald I’m in love and excuse me while my brain is already exploding into thousands of little moths on its own and asking for MORE. Which is silly. Finish it, yet, Cait. FINISH IT. (So don’t give me spoilers! I’m just over halfway.)
But Sarai’s mother is the goddess of despair and absolutely evil and I would fully like a book about these evil gods. I HAVE SO MANY QUESTIONS ABOUT WHY THEY CAME. But…well, Cait. It’s possible you will actually get answers in this book. When you finish it.
For goodness sakes.
But why is this book so perfectly beautiful and full of gorgeous bookworm appreciation and lovely prose that makes me want to eat my audiobook???!? It’s actually not a good thing. If I eat my audiobook, I’ll have eaten my iPod, and then I’ll truly be the reading machine everyone claims I am. *
* FYI I’ve read 103 books this year!! I’m either on fire and amazing or else have absolutely no life and no sleep.