Sterling Publishing is poised to enter the YA market in spring 2021 with the launch of Sterling Teen, an imprint that will issue fiction across a spectrum of genres, as well as nonfiction. Three novels comprise the imprint’s inaugural list, which reflects the eclectic nature of its publishing program.
Brian Monahan, editorial director of Sterling children’s books, noted that the company had been discussing introducing a YA line for some time. “When I joined the editorial team, coming up on two years ago, it was one of the first things that my colleagues and I talked about,” he recalled. “We publish board books, books for older children in many formats, and adult books—but we did not have a presence in the YA space, which we knew was a big miss. We pride ourselves in finding unique voices and untold stories across the board, and we felt strongly that it was time to do the same in the YA market.”
On the inaugural list, Mortal Remains by Mary Ann Fraser (Feb. 2) is a gothic romance about a 17-year-old cosmetologist working at her family’s funeral home who rescues someone from certain death—a boy who oddly reminds her of a long-dead childhood crush. In Halli Gomez’s List of Ten (Mar. 2), an #OwnVoices novel, a teen living with the dual diagnosis of Tourette syndrome and obsessive-compulsive disorder plots his own suicide with the inadvertent help of a beautiful girl who simultaneously shows him that life might hold more possibilities than he imagined. And Take Three Girls by Cath Crowley, Simmone Howell, and Fiona Wood (Apr. 6) addresses such topics as cyberbullying, fat shaming, drug abuse, and financial stress through the stories of three very different girls who band together when they are targeted by a school website dealing in malicious gossip and lies.
Sterling will not add to its editorial staff with the advent of Sterling Teen, Monahan explained, noting that “all of our editors acquire books across all age groups and genres, based on their interests.”
He underscored the imprint’s mission of publishing books that appeal to a broad range of YA readers. “We are not envisioning Sterling Teen as a genre imprint, but as an opportunity to build a list of books, nonfiction as well as fiction, that showcase unique perspectives and exciting new voices that speak to teens. Sterling Children’s Books has a long history of publishing a wide array of books for readers from infants to age 12, and we are excited to bring the same thoughtful and curated approach to the YA audience.”
Mortal Remains by Mary Ann Fraser. Sterling Teen, $18.95 Feb. 2 ISBN 978-1-4549-3948-1
List of Ten by Halli Gomez. Sterling Teen, $17.95 Mar. 2 ISBN 978-1-4549-4014-2
Take Three Girls by Cath Crowley, Simmone Howell, and Fiona Wood. Sterling Teen, $17.95 Apr. 6 ISBN 978-1-4549-3827-9