A new genre has been created. Young Adult used to cover a broad range of ages, from lower middle school up into college. As we all know, a sixth grader is light years away from a college student in maturity, interests, culture… Having one genre to cover all of those ages was a bit too much.
So, with the ever growing interest in young adult fiction (because it’s awesome), you’ll see some subdivisions branching out. Middle grades and Teen Fiction are fairly self explanatory, but what about New Adult?
New Adult is the term that is used for books with protagonists and characters in that post-high school but pre-career and marriage time of life. They’re older, more mature, and wresting with very adult issues, but they’re still young. They don’t have everything figured out and they don’t always know where they’re going, but they’re making progress.
I think this new genre is great. I’ve enjoyed reading a dozen or so new adult titles already, and the issues dealt with in these books are close enough to issues I still deal with in my thirties that I can relate easily to the characters. I think it’s unfortunate, though, that many new adult authors are putting heavy doses of graphic sexuality and foul language in their titles. It reminds me of a child actress going out and thinking she has to do nude scenes in adult movies before she’s seen as fully grown up. It’s annoying, especially when it just seems extraneous in the middle of a really good story.
One new adult title I can whole heartedly recommend, though, is Friday Night Alibi by Cassie Mae. In this book, we get all of the romance and drama and happy we want, without sex scenes that border on pornographic. I’m looking forward to reading more from Cassie Mae!