Discover New Adult from Carina Press
Positioned right between Young Adult and Adult, New Adult covers a stage of life that has never really been showcased before: moving out on your own, looking for that first real job, and entering into your first serious relationship. It’s an exciting and challenging time, and one that’s only just starting to be explored in fiction. We asked three New Adult authors what they love most about this new genre, and how it relates to their own personal stories.
Kristine Wyllys, author of Wild Ones:
I am a card-carrying believer of New Adult who will enthusiastically, and often without warning, preach the good word of this magical genre. I love absolutely everything about it. The intensity of it, the passion. New Adult has all the things I’d craved for years. It’s the meat I’d scoured Young Adult and Adult hoping to find to chew on.
But if I had to choose just one thing, I’d have to say it’s the determination of the genre as a whole. This is a shelf that wasn’t supposed to happen. Readers and authors were told it wasn’t possible, that no one wanted it. They were told, loudly, that it would never work. And those readers and writers refused to listen. They carved out this space, this brand new, impossible area, between YA and Adult and forced everyone else to acknowledge them. Now there are agents and publishers begging for NA manuscripts, some the very same ones who said this age group would never be a thing. That’s some romantic, fantastical beginnings right there.
And because of that determination, my Wild Ones has a place to call home. My Bri would have never fit on another shelf. She’s too dark and gritty for YA, too young and wild for Adult. But she can set up camp on the NA shelves. Stretch her legs out in this brand new space we authors are still actively defining. I love that. I love being able to be a part of that. I love that my Bri and her brooding boxer boy get to be a part of that. I love that NA isn’t held to the same rules as the other genres, that we’re still making them and breaking them. For me and my crazy 20-something Lane kids, getting to write the rules that’ll be broken is an exciting adventure we’re so stoked to be on.
Danube Adele, author of Quicksilver Dreams:
New Adult romance is a blast to create because it clearly illustrates how young women are changing their roles in society today. They are powerful, dynamic and demanding, entering that time in their lives when they’re first trying to figure out who they are in a quickly changing world. They are no longer limited to displaying demure, virginal, long-suffering archetypes. The sky is the limit, which gives our characters so many more options than they’ve ever had before. Taylor Lane, my sexy, smart female lead in Quicksilver Dreams, is taking kickboxing classes to improve her odds of being able to kick some ass if the need ever arises. She’s smart and savvy. With-it. No one is going to tell her how to do her life, which is why she’s attracted a strong, powerful male character like Ryder Langston. He’s fascinated by her, doesn’t quite know what to make of her, but doesn’t want to let her go. The word spinster has quickly become an anachronistic idea because women no longer need to assume passive roles in society to be considered attractive. In fact, quite the opposite is true.
Taylor, in Quicksilver Dreams, became my personal hero while writing this story. She is a true badass who is not going to let the world push her around. She is going to live on her terms, no matter what it takes. Her wit and snarkiness are part of her charm, but as the story goes on, we get to see that she also has a deep well of softness and vulnerability that she tries to keep hidden, though unsuccessfully. She is the New Adult woman who can enter any arena with her chest puffed out demanding her due, and Ryder, Mr. Dark and Brooding, cannot help but be drawn to her strength and courage.
Stina Lindenblatt, author of Tell Me When:
While I was in university, all I could find were books that were either about high school students or were about adults with adult problems. But neither described me. I didn’t have a mortgage. I wasn’t starting my career. Heck, I was still figuring out what I wanted to do with my life once I finished my degree. It wasn’t until I read Easy by Tammara Webber that I remember how much I had once craved to read stories like that. I fell in love with the book and started reading other New Adult stories.
I found the stories I connected with most were the ones with emotionally scarred main characters. That described me during my university years. During the week, I studied, attended classes, worked, and hung out with friends. On the weekend, I partied, drank, and had sex, all to help me deal with the emotional pain I was struggling with at the time. Don’t worry I got past all of that, but it made me realize that if these types of stories had exist when I was in university, I might not have struggled as much. If there was ever a lightning-bolt moment, this was it. Suddenly, it was as if my university years hadn’t been solely about obtaining an advanced degree (though that certainly was a perk). It handed me a newfound purpose: giving college-aged individuals hope for their present life, hope for their future. Not only that, I now get to write the edgy stories I couldn’t tell when I wrote Young Adult. It allows me to push the boundaries, something that can be frowned upon when writing for teens.
But New Adult isn’t only about characters balancing their newfound independence and responsibilities and dealing with the shadows of their past. It’s about friends, family, and romantic relationships. It’s about new experiences, both negative and positive. Experiences such as studying in a foreign country for a semester or testing high caliber athletes. Wow, who knew my education would prove to be so useful?
And let’s not forget the romance often seen in New Adult. Now I get to write hot sex scenes, something that isn’t permitted in Young Adult. Yeah, yeah, I know they aren’t essential in New Adult stories, but they are a lot of fun to read and write.
Are you a fan of New Adult? What New Adult books have you read?