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So what is YA? And what are the boundaries?
In an excellent piece in the Guardian, post the first YA Literature Conference (YALC), Imogen Russell looks at the classifications for teen reads and what goes and what doesn’t:
In the past, I’ve used the labels “teen” and “YA” interchangeably, but a quick straw poll of aficionados reveals two differing standpoints. Some feel they basically cover the same ground, and others think that while both refer to age categories “teen” covers 12-14, and “YA” is aimed at about 14+. For the latter, the later Harry Potter books, in which torture and murder come to the fore after the gentler series beginnings, would count as “teen”. YA, meanwhile, is more likely to deal frankly with sex, tackle challenging issues and adult relationships, and feature swearing.