Monstrous identities in fantasy for young adults often function as metaphors for cultural tensions about romantic and sexual relations between young people, and about how the young interact with the generation that precedes them. This essay considers four monster figures prevalent in Young Adult (YA) fantasy: the vampire, the werewolf, the monstrous mother, and the monstrous father and analyses their manifestation in YA romances by Robin McKinley, Stephenie Meyer, L. K. Smith and Maggie Stiefvater. It considers what these representations tell us about cultural anxieties over the sexuality of young women, and how they are positioned as reading subjects.
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