YA Authors with Debut Adult Novels in 2024

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Kelly is a former librarian and a long-time blogger at STACKED. She’s the editor/author of (DON’T) CALL ME CRAZY: 33 VOICES START THE CONVERSATION ABOUT MENTAL HEALTH and the editor/author of HERE WE ARE: FEMINISM FOR THE REAL WORLD. Her next book, BODY TALK, will publish in Fall 2020. Follow her on Instagram @heykellyjensen.

Authors who can write across several genres and/or age categories are worthy of attention. It takes tremendous skill to navigate thinking about audience during the writing process, and while some decisions about who a book is for happen in the marketing department, seeing authors skillfully try their hands at books for young readers and those for adults is straight-up fun. It’s a nice way to not only admire the craft but, for readers, a nice way to dip your toes into the types of books you might not always be drawn to. If you loved an author’s adult novel, it might be your perfect entry point into young adult to pick up their YA novel.

Last year, I pulled together a list of YA authors making their debuts as adult novelists. With the new year here, how about checking in on the YA authors with debut adult novels in 2024?

This list is limited to authors who began their careers as YA authors but who will publish their first work of adult fiction in 2024. Some will be trying their hands at genre, while others will be writing in the lit fic/contemporary category. I have not included YA authors who’ve previously published adult novels nor adult novelists trying out YA—those are two potentially worthwhile lists for the future.

Get excited to meet some of your favorite YA writers in the world of adult fiction this year!

the breakup pact book cover

The Break-Up Pact by Emma Lord (August 13)

Beloved for her YA rom-coms, Lord is taking her skills for humor and heart into the adult world. Two former best friends who haven’t spoken for 10 years are each experiencing a humiliating public breakup—and in the midst of those respective breakups, a photo of the two of them together surfaces, and rumors fly. Now, June and Levi will pretend to date in order to save something important to each of them and create a new public image.

The problem comes when it might not be fake feelings that emerge.

colton gentry's third act book cover

Colton Gentry’s Third Act by Jeff Zentner (April 30)

Colton Gentry has everything he could imagine: a great career in country music and the woman of his dreams. But his best friend was murdered only weeks earlier in a shooting at a country music festival. Colton is grieving and, in the midst of it, goes on an anti-gun rant at one of his performances. He’s quickly booed off stage and fears that his career is over.

He moves back to his hometown of Kentucky, unsure of what to do. But then he runs into his first love, Luann, at a new restaurant in town, and things might begin to turn around for him.

the default world book cover

The Default World by Naomi Kanakia (May 28)

Kanakia has published a nonfiction work before about the publishing industry, as well as several works of short fiction for the adult audience, but this is her first adult novel, following a number of YA titles. It stars a trans lead through a darkly humorous story of excess.

Jhanvi left San Francisco to get sober and save money for surgery. But when she runs into Henry, one of her friends/lovers and he tells her about how he and his techie roommates have bought and transformed a warehouse into a sex dungeon, Jhanvi hatches a plan: move in and take advantage of these rich people.

Too bad the lifestyle is a bit irresistible. Especially if it seems that these people might actually accept Jhanvi for who she is.

dragonrider book cover

Dragon Rider Taran Matharu (April 23)

Looking for a story of dragons and magic? You’ll do well with this story about Jai, an orphan and royal hostage who must learn to soulbond with a dragon hatchling in order to unleash his magic and escape his dangerous situation.

This is the first book in a forthcoming series.

the faculty lounge book cover

The Faculty Lounge by Jennifer Mathieu (July 23)

In this workplace novel, we get to meet the faculty of Baldwin High School, though it begins with the death of an elderly substitute teacher in the faculty lounge. This is a catalyst but really not the biggest story in the school—at least not to the staff. It’s not until parents catch wind that it becomes a Big Deal.

So, who are the faculty of Baldwin? What do they do when they’re not in the classroom? This novel is a funny, warm character study inside a Texas high school.

hate to fake it to you book cover

Hate to Fake It To You by Amanda Sellet (July 16)

Libby’s life is not glamorous, but that’s what it looks like on the Instagram page she and her friends made as a joke. So she begins to sweat a bit when a real influencer finds her account and thinks that Libby would be able to take her experience on the app and turn it into full-time work. Now Libby is scrambling to look like it’s no joke—and that’s made harder when the recruiter’s partner is a photographer she is quickly falling for.

it's elementary book cover

It’s Elementary by Elise Bryant (July 9)

Mavis has too much going on to ever be a PTA mom. But…she’s swayed by Trisha, the long-time president of that PTA, to step into the role of overseeing the DEI committee. It’ll be fine, and she convinces herself she can make real change as one of the only Black parents in the school community.

But then the principal tells Trisha for the committee and Trisha is not happy. Later that night, Mavis spies Trisha doing something suspicious involving black garbage bags, cleaning supplies, and rubber gloves and boots.

The principal isn’t at school the next day, and now, Mavis is going to have to figure out what happened that night.

listen for the lie book cover

Listen for the Lie by Amy Tintera (March 5)

Lucy’s best friend Savvy was murdered, and Lucy wandered her small Texas town that night covered in he best friend’s blood. The two of them were wildly popular and beloved. But Lucy was not implicated in Savvy’s death, and after that horrible night, she left town and started a new life in Los Angeles.

So when a true crime podcast comes to town wanting to solve the murder, Lucy is forced to return. It might just come to pass that she is indeed the murderer.

one of our kind book cover

One Of Our Kind by Nicola Yoon (June 11)

Jasmyn and King Williams have moved to the planned Black utopian community of Liberty, California. While King takes to it immediately, Jasmyn finds herself disappointed to see that the residents are far less interested in systemic change and social justice than they are in going to the gym and booking spa appointments. So when Jasmyn and the handful of friends she makes in the community uncover a secret about Liberty and its founders, it threatens to change everything from utopia to dystopia.

pride and joy book cover

Pride and Joy by Louisa Onomé (March 12)

Joy Okafor is planning for her mother, Mama Mary’s 70th birthday, and welcoming the extended Nigerian Canadian family into her home to celebrate. Except her mother goes to take a nap and never wakes up.

This could turn into sadness, but Auntie Nancy believes that Mama Mary is going to rise again like Jesus Christ. Now, what should have been a birthday and should have been a funeral has turned into waiting for a miracle to come.

rainbow black book cover

Rainbow Black by Maggie Thrash (March 19)

Thirteen-year-old Lacey Bond is growing up with her parents in New Hampshire, where they run a daycare. But it’s 1990, and with the Satanic panic, both parents have been arrested, and Lacey is forced to make some awful choices.

Fast forward to Lacey’s adulthood. People have mostly forgotten about her, until she makes one mistake and unleashes a major disaster that might just bring rise to another terrible mass panic.

skin & bones book cover

skin & bones by Renée Watson (May 7)

Lena Baker is 40 and everything in her life seems good, stable, solid. She’ll be getting married in just a few weeks, too. But then she learns something that completely upends her world. Now, she’s learning how to be the mother she wants to be for her daughter while struggling to navigate her own challenges.

the split book cover

The Split by Kit Frick (February 13)

Jane considers herself boring compared to her younger sister, Esme. Esme lives the high life in the city. But during a summer storm, Esme calls Jane and tells her that she’s leaving everything behind and wants to start anew. Can Jane pick her up and let her crash?

This is where the book splits into two different realities. In one, Jane drives to the city to pick up her sister, overcoming a fear of driving on the highway. In the other, Jane lets Esme remain where she is, but Esme disappears forever.

tiny threads book cover

Tiny Threads by Lilliam Rivera (August 27)

Samara has snagged her dream job as a fashion designer for the legendary Mota line and moves from New Jersey to sunny California. But as Mota’s big fashion show gets closer, everything that looked like a dream is turning into a nightmare—Samara is working long hours, sure, but that can’t be the real reason she is seeing and hearing things in her room at night.

It might just be that Mota—and her new home—have some dark secrets that are unraveling.

the unwedding book cover

The Unwedding by Ally Condie (June 4)

Ellery and her husband should be celebrating their 20th anniversary in Big Sur, but their divorce means Ellery is now there by herself. It’s hard, especially as she’s watching another couple marry there.

So when Ellery discovers the body of the groom in the pool, she immediately knows that something is off. That she is not the only one struggling right now. The rain coming down has made it so the resort she’s at has had access cut off, so the police cannot get there to investigate.

Then, another guest dies. Something is not right in paradise, and everyone is a suspect.


Want even more adult novels by YA authors? We’ve got you covered!

Read original article here.

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