The Oral History Podcast, Episode 21: Young Adult or Literary Fiction? Who Decides?


In this episode of The Oral History Podcast, we ask why some books about teenagers are labeled “YA,” while others are marketed as “literary fiction.” Tell us what you think on our Facebook page or via email (feedback AT theoralhistorypodcast DOT com).

Click to subscribe in iTunes or Stitcher




Our current reads


Almost Missed You, by Jessica Strawser

The Association of Small Bombsby Karan Mahajan

Letters to a Young Writer,by Colum McCann


The Secret Speech, by Tom Rob Ford

Robert Lowell: Setting the River on Fireby Kay Redfield Jamison


Here, have a picture of Sherlock & Molly kissing; life’s short



– Subscribe to this episode’s companion piece on TinyLetter here

– Purchase podcast t-shirts here (100% of proceeds go to Scarleteen)

– visit us on Facebook here


Books & References 

YALSA’s Alex Award

Big Girl Small, by Rachel DeWoskin

Bone Gapby Laura Ruby

Brutal Youthby Anthony Breznican

The Bunker Diary, by Kevin Brooks

Catcher in The Rye, by J.D. Salinger

Dare Me & The Fever, by Megan Abbott

Drowning Instinct, by Ilsa J. Bick

Everything I Never Told You, by Celeste Ng

Freefall, by Mindi Scott

The Girls, by Emma Cline

Girls On Fireby Robin Wasserman

The Glass Castleby Jeannette Walls

History of Wolves, by Emily Fridlund

I Crawl Through It,by A.S. King

The Impossible Fortress, by Jason Rekulak

Love Me Backby Merritt Tierce

Mockingjay, by Suzanne Collins

Other Broken Things, by Christa Desir

One of the Boys,by Daniel Magariel

Out of Darknessby Ashley Hope Perez

The Passion of Dolssa, by Julie Berry

The Princesses of Iowaby M. Molly Backes

The Virgin Suicides, by Jeffrey Eugenides

The V-Word: True Stories of First-Time Sexby Amber J. Keyser, editor


“Wow, that’s a lotta books, ladies! Good job!” – Idris Elba, probably


Want more? Subscribe to our accompanying TinyLetter for further discussion on this episode!



Carrie Mesrobian and Christa Desir are two good friends who happen to be YA authors interested in discussing sex. The idea for The Oral History Podcast came out of their daily dog-walking conversations when they realized that others might be as interested in this topic as they were. Each podcast focuses on a topic of sexuality in the lives of teens. Previous podcasts have included discussions about masturbation, first kisses, cheating, illicit relationships, oral sex, and “girl talk” to name a few. Frank, engaging, and filthy, these two podcasters will leave you laughing, blushing, or ready to start writing sex scenes in your novel in an authentic and excellent way.






About the Author:

Christa Desir writes contemporary YA fiction. Her forthcoming novel, Other Broken Things, will be published in January 2016 by Simon Pulse. Visit her online at, and follow her on Twitter at @ChristaDesir. Carrie Mesrobian is the author of three YA novels, most recently Cut Both Ways (2015). Visit her online at, and find her on Twitter at @CarrieMesrobian.

Post a Comment