Here at Dread Central we talk a lot about raising your kids to be horror fans, and one of the best ways to do that is through reading. But how do you keep them interested once they’ve outgrown the high school drama and simple romance of typical adolescent genre fiction? One option is Paul Dorset’s New Blood: Melrose.
Dorset, a British native who lives near Seattle, Washington, says it’s important to give young adults books that offer them something to chew on intellectually without being overly graphic, something that both parents and their young adult kids can have fun with and talk about – without blushing. “Kids have a short attention span these days,” he says. “It takes a really good book to get them focused. You really have to encourage kids to read.”
Dorset is the author of seven books, including fantasies for younger children and how-to’s for adults. However, he says it’s that middle ground of readers – ages 16 to 30 – that need special attention. In their world the written word is all texts and Tweets, which can contribute to a short attention span and inability to absorb more complex written material. “Young people trying to get jobs need to be able to do the short and sweet – and the longer and more complex,” he says.
As a pioneer in the computing world (he was writing classified code for the British government in the late 1970s and early 1980s), Dorset has an unusual insight into what clicks, literally, for young readers – and their parents. His newest book, New Blood: Melrose (Part 1), draws from his 30-plus years in Information Technology. Toss in a little paranormal activity (a graduation from vampires) and Da Vinci Code-style intrigue, and you’ve got something older teens, young adults, and their parents can sink their teeth into.
“I wouldn’t recommend it for my 13-year-old, but it’s perfect for my 16-year-old,” he says. “Even my 22-year-old loves it, and the guys like it as much as the girls.” It hits on the themes affecting all of us today: layoffs and corporate reorganization; technology and the looming shadow of “big brother;” ambition and its costs.
“Add to that mystery, the paranormal culture, and two people who must never get together; and you’ve got lots of layers for any adult, or young adult, to peel back,” Dorset adds. “The more things that happen, the more you uncover.”
To uncover more about Dorset and his books, visit Paul Dorset’s official website, and order your copy of New Blood: Melrose for your son or daughter (or yourself) from the EvilShop below.
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