Understanding Religion and Its Role in Society
While many young adults are beginning their own search for spirituality and trying to determine the place that religion will or will not have in their lives, others are trying to understand the religious choices that others have made and how those choices will affect relationships. The inspirational Clearwater Crossing series of books by Laura Peyton Roberts features a diverse group of teenagers who face a series of crises that force them to increasingly rely on each other and on their faith. Lurlene McDaniel addresses the importance of religious beliefs in several of her books, including Angel of Hope (2000) and Angels Watching Over Me (1996). In Sonia Levitin’s The Singing Mountain (1998), Mitch Green, a California teen, visits Israel and decides to join an Orthodox yeshiva there. Other books in which religion plays a strong role are Blind Fury (Shands, 2001), The Book of Fred (Bardi, 2001), and Conflict in California (Stuckey, 2001).
Some young adults must deal with religious fanaticism. For example, Dorry, in Leaving Fishers (Haddix, 1997), finds that the group of students who befriend her are really members of a religious cult. In The Last Safe Place on Earth (Peck, 1995), Todd’s little sister is brainwashed by his fundamentalist babysitter.
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