Liesa Abrams will join Random House Books for Young Readers as v-p and editor-in-chief of a new imprint, effective November 9. The imprint, Labyrinth Road, will focus on middle grade series and novels, as well as YA—particularly contemporary fantasy and realistic literary novels with high-concept hooks. The debut list will launch in 2022.
Abrams was previously at Simon & Schuster, where she most recently served as v-p, editor at large. Over the course of her career, she has acquired and edited a number of popular middle grade series, including Dork Diaries by Rachel Renée Russell and Beyonders by Brandon Mull; Story Thieves by James Riley; Keeper of the Lost Cities by Shannon Messenger; The Unwanteds by Lisa McMann; and the graphic novel series The Okay Witch by Emma Steinkellner. On the YA side, Abrams acquired and edited bestsellers by Lynn Weingarten, Scott Westerfeld, and Kiersten White, and most recently Legendborn by Tracy Deonn. She also edited the Printz Honor–winning A Heart in a Body in the World by Deb Caletti and titles in Suzanne Young’s bestselling Program series. As editorial director of Simon Pulse, she led a team that published such titles as the bestsellers Love & Gelato and The Last Magician, as well as the Morris Award finalist Starfish and When Dimple Met Rishi.
Abrams said in a statement, “Labyrinth Road is a home for books about epic journeys—both fantastical and emotional—that give readers a way to explore our world and imagined worlds. Labyrinths have twists and turns, but they don’t have dead ends. These will be books where readers can choose to get lost, and ultimately find themselves.”