Recently, ten spectacular Aussie YA authors teamed up to create the first anthology of its kind – the #LoveOzYA Anthology. As a massive supporter of Aussie authors, I presumed this anthology would be something I would adore. And I did, but… I kind of hated it too? So here are my top five reasons why I hated this anthology.
1. I hate how short the stories are.
How could I forgive this anthology for making me fall in love with the characters in each story and then ripping them away just as I felt like I knew them? From the moment I started reading the first story of this anthology, I knew that having to say goodbye to each person after such a short time with them was going to be devastating, but it was even harder than I first thought. Not only was it difficult because I adored the characters from each story and I wanted to spend more time with them, but the ephemeral nature of short stories meant that often there wasn’t a definite conclusion. Things ended in a way that left me mostly satisfied, but I wanted to know more. What was going to happen to these characters now? This anthology broke my heart by snatching away the characters from me too soon, and I hate it for that.
2. I hate how gorgeous the cover is.
Look at that cover and tell me that’s not the one thing you’d save if your house was burning down. That cover is more gorgeous than most humans. But I hated the way it made me want to protect it with every fibre of my being. How I would rather wrap my raincoat around the book to keep it from getting wet and then get rained on myself. But that’s not all. I hated how I’d get distracted from reading this book because I was too busy staring at the cover. It was so pretty it was mesmerising. And that’s why I hated this book.
3. I hate the all-Aussie cast of authors.
When I first heard which authors were going to be contributing a short story to this anthology, I was excited. But little did I know that having so many of my favourite authors contribute to this was going to be something I hated. How could this book make me decide which stories to read first? Did I start with my favourite contributing author and then work backwards, or start with the authors I hadn’t read work from before? Or was I just meant to read this book chronologically from start to finish? I hated how tough that decision was, all because of the amazing Aussie authors who slotted in a story. They were all phenomenal authors and I just didn’t know where to start, which is why I hated the #LoveOzYA Anthology.
4. I hate how different and captivating each story is.
At first, I assumed that this anthology would be a celebration of Australia, meaning each story would be set somewhere within out country. But no. Some were, but some were set in space, and others in unknown cities or towns. Each story was vastly different from the next, complete with a diverse array of characters and a compelling narrative. I hated that I never knew what to expect when I started a new story, and how the genres and tones fluctuated so dramatically. There were happy stories, and ones that stabbed me in the chest because of how emotional they were. I just wanted more of them, and I hated that I read this book too quickly.
5. I just hate this anthology. Full stop.
I mean, how can the wonderfully talented and passionate Danielle Binks work to create something so unique to Aussie YA and something that hasn’t been done before and then expect us not to be craving more now? How can all the contributing authors introduce us to the idea of a #LoveOzYA anthology and then allow us to realise that we won’t be getting another one for at least another year, if ever? I want more anthologies with these amazing authors and the fact that this is the only one on my shelves makes me hate this book even more. This anthology truly is phenomenal and one-of-a-kind — undoubtably the best anthology I’ve ever read. And that’s why I hate it.
Did you ‘hate’ the #LoveOzYA Anthology too? If you’re not Aussie, do the authors from your country do things like this? Have you read any other anthologies? If you could choose some of your favourite authors to get together and write an anthology, which authors would you choose? I’d love to know!