Okay, so I may have not done #3 yesterday. I was busy with... school? And life? Anyway. I'm gonna try to do TWO today to make up for it, but don't hold me to it. Now, on to the author!
K.A.A. Applegate is the creator of what is still one of my favorite series of all time: Animorphs. To me, this work embodies what good young adult is all about: it's exciting, has characters you fall in love with, and it doesn't pull any punches. The books were short and I think technically shelved in middle grade, but I don't think a lot of parents would want their children reading these books if they knew the content. Aliens that crept into your ear and took over your mind, constant war with humans and aliens dying and limbs being torn off, massive internal struggles between good and evil. Not to mention kids sneaking out all the time.
Not your average young adult book. But I absolutely could not get enough of them. I loved the moral battles they had to go through, and the way they never seemed more than human. I loved the creation of the whole world of aliens (and how they weren't just humans with bumps on their foreheads).
Animorphs wasn't the only thing K.A.A. Applegate wrote, though. She also wrote a lot of teen books during the 80s, all of which I also dug up at used bookstores. And loved. The most well known of these is probably the Making Out series, which was awesome. I have to admit, when I was about to go to college, I read the ones where the characters go to college over and over again. (Although at the end I still wasn't quite sure what was happening with Nina and Ben...)
Thank you, K.A.A. Applegate for giving me some of my most beloved books and characters. Although for some reason Blogger won't let me do the < thingies.