The eighth annual YALLFest took place on November 9–10 in Charleston, S.C. One of the largest teen book festivals in the world, the celebration brought together 70 authors and 12,500 fans. Featured events included panels, signings, photo ops, and more. We’ve rounded up a selection of highlights from the festivities.
Natasha Ngan, author of Girls of Paper and Fire, celebrating her first YALLFest experience after participating in a spotlight talk with James Patterson, the “Trapped Girls” panel, the “LGBTQIA+ Ask Anything” panel, and the “YALLFest Smackdown.”
The “Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: Adventures in Groups” panel featured authors (from l.) Destiny Soria (Beneath the Citadel), J.C. Cervantes (The Storm Runner), Roshani Chokshi (The Gilded Wolves), and co-authors Brendan Reichs and Ally Condie (The Darkdeep).
Dhonielle Clayton signing copies of The Belles.
Jenny Han (l.), author of the To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before trilogy, and Morgan Matson, author of Save the Date, hosted a “Late Night This Morning” talk show-style opening keynote. Photo: David Strauss Photography.
Fans posed with Willowdean from Julie Murphy’s Dumplin’ to celebrate the upcoming Netflix movie.
National Book Award winner Neal Shusterman (Dry). Photo: David Strauss Photography.
Authors prepared to compete in Penguin Teen’s “Bookish Pictionary Challenge” (from l.): Adib Khorram (Darius the Great Is Not Okay), Stephanie Perkins (There’s Someone Inside Your House), David Arnold (The Strange Fascinations of Noah Hypnotik), Beth Revis (Give the Dark My Love), and Renée Ahdieh (the Flame in the Mist series).
Disney authors got together with their fans for a group photo after the Books and Biscuits giveaway.
Wonder author R.J. Palacio. Photo: David Strauss Photography.
Author Monica Hesse signed copies of The War Outside at a meet-and-greet for YA bloggers in Little, Brown’s NOVL community.
(From l.): Authors Sarah Enni (Tell Me Everything), Lamar Giles (The Last Last-Day-of-Summer), Ashley Woodfolk (The Beauty That Remains), Brandy Colbert (Finding Yvonne), and Nisha Sharma (My So-Called Bollywood Life) after their “For Art’s Sake: Writing Art & Music in Novels” panel.
As presenting sponsor of the festival, Random House’s YA community Underlined converted the empty retail space next to Charleston’s Blue Bicycle Books into a book lover’s paradise. Here, fans pose in the official Stranger Things photo booth.
Jimmy Cajoleas, author of The Good Demon, has his picture taken by a fan.
A view of the crowd. Photo: David Strauss Photography.
Corrie Wang (r.) led a conversation about writing complicated characters with authors (from l.): Mary H.K. Choi (Emergency Contact), Spencer Hyde (Waiting for Fitz), Kass Morgan (the 100 series and the Light Years series), Alex London (Guardian), and L.C. Rosen (Jack of Hearts (and Other Parts)).
David Levithan, v-p, publisher, and editorial director at Scholastic, and marketing coordinator Shannon Pender handed out donuts for breakfast.
Nic Stone, author of Odd One Out, cozies up to Snape. Photo: David Strauss Photography.
HarperCollins and YALLFest teamed up to bring hundreds of students to the festival, where they received Shelf Stuff swag.
Author Adrienne Young (Sky in the Deep) speaking with a fan.
Festivalgoers took home some sizeable book hauls. Photo: David Strauss Photography.
The “YA Smackdown” grand finale, which was hosted by authors Soman Chainani and Brendan Reichs, featured all of the YALLfest authors onstage in a series of games, contests, and more.