Tuesday, October 05, 2010

GIrl Protag Verse Boy Protags

I've been reading a lot, lately and I noticed an interesting trend.

In every YA book with a male protag-- there's a lot more hooking up then in a book with a girl protag.

I find this interesting and yet sort of predictable. 

Girls when they read, they like the thrill of the chase, the potential of kissing and touching and by the end there better be a kiss.  Most books the girl is satisfied with a kiss.   Girls like it when the main character is place in a potentially naughty situation-  alone in a hotel room, but they don't need the physical aspects.

Boys apparently do.

In every book I've read with a male protag, there has been a scene where he hooks up with a girl and it's more than just kissing.  Most of the time the girl is the aggressor as well.  So Yesterday, Little Brother, The Replacement, I am the Messenger, Candor.  All these books have male protags, and all the guys have wanted to kiss the girl, but when it comes down to it,  SHE kisses him. Or he kisses her and it's an epic fail and then later on in the book she comes to the realiziation that YES she wants to be with him and then she becomes the aggressor. 
The girls in these books all share the same basic traits too,  beautiful but in a non tradtional way,  tough, a slightly bit goth, and are "just as big of a horndog as he is." (paraphrased from Little Brother). 

And when you look at the male mind, yes, this makes sense.  Boys like girls, they like it when they get to touch girls.  But boys who are still reading YA books are probably not that good around girls and therefore would really appericate it if a girl would make the first move.

In books with female protags, the boy always kisses her first, or he brushes up against her, or he protectively puts his arm around her, or whatever. 

What does this mean in real life?

It means A LOTS of young adults will sit around staring at one another waiting for the other one to make the move. 

Lots of awkward staring.

Lots of waiting.

Lots of inscurity and now suddenly doubting if the person he or she is staring at does, in fact, want to be touched or kissed.  

Thanks YA authors for making the teenage years all the more complicated. 


  1. "Lots of awkward staring.

    Lots of waiting.

    Lots of inscurity and now suddenly doubting if the person he or she is staring at does, in fact, want to be touched or kissed."

    I'm pretty sure this IS adolescence. I remember a whooooole lot of awkward staring, waiting, and insecurity, and I wasn't even reading YA books. I think the books are reflecting the reality --girls and guys want to be with people that are confident. That excludes basically every one of their peers.

    I think the really interesting point you bring up here is the idea that girls are alright with things getting to the kissing point, and then staying right there. That's what I liked about The DUFF, and it's also what I liked about Twilight. Girls want more than kissing, too. Why don't we see that reflected in YA more often?
    (I feel a blog post coming on.)

  2. Ahahah.. you are so right! Amen to that!

    I never gave it much thought, but I did notice that many YA books just stop at the kissing point, but they spend a lot of time building up to getting there, which is sweet too.