Something that is severely lacking in Young Adult novels is diversity. Meaning…there is almost none.
You’re telling me that so and so goes to a whole different realm/world/kingdom etc and everyone there looks just like her, straight and white? It is a tired trope that has been played out one too many hundreds of time.
In my opinion, diversity is what makes a novel good. And what I am not referring to is token characters. Token characters are actually worse than not having any. The reason for this? If you are going to have a person of color as a character, that’s great, but if they are delegated as a servant or as a maid…what are you doing?
Perpetuating stereotypes in a novel that doesn’t even take place on this world, while claiming it has diversity is plain and simply wrong.
Wrong on the level that diversity is not about including people that already exist. It’s about writing about the world we live in. People of every race, sexuality, gender, ethnicity and religion exist. They exist and authors who turn a blind eye to this, who build worlds that exclude people, or put them in token rolls, are doing their reader bases a grave injustice.