Seventeen Magazine and Harlequin Teen Launching New Book Imprint
Posted on February 5, 2016
Seventeen magazine has teamed up with Harlequin Teen to publish four original novels in hardcover and ebook formats. Seventeen, which is owned by Hearst Publishing, already publishes tip books, guide books and other nonfiction ebooks, wants to expand its product line to include fiction that teen girls will read. The books will feature strong female protagonists who Seventeen describes as "multi-dimensional and empowered."
The imprint will be called Seventeen Books. Its first release will hit a political nerve on both sides of the aisle. It's called Something in Between by bestselling YA author Melissa de la Cruz. The book centers on a teen girl whose parents are Filipino immigrants. She has a happy life until she discovers that her parents are not in the country legally and they could be deported. Ms. de la Cruz says the story has some elements that are similar to what she lived through. By the time her parents got their green cards, she and her sister were in a legal limbo. She became an American citizen at the age of 40.
She posted on Twitter about how much the book means to her saying,"I was able to receive financial aid from Columbia University, even without a green card, one of the few schools that offer to non-citizens. The story in Something in Between is not mine, or my family's but the emotional center of it is so me. Very excited for this book!!!"
Michelle Tan, editor in chief of Seventeen discussed why the magazine is diving into novel length fiction, saying, "The magazine published early stories by incredible and wide-ranging authors like Sylvia Plath and Jennifer Weiner and has always celebrated books that resonate with each new generation of girls. We're excited to expand on this rich heritage by partnering with Harlequin Teen, because they share our commitment to strong writing, showcasing complex and charismatic female characters, and exploring all aspects of what it means to be a teenager today. Our readers are going to love these books, relate to them and, hopefully, be inspired by them too."
Seventeen magazine reaches 12 million teens in print. Millions more read the online version of the magazine and its associated social media accounts, so the move certainly makes sense for Harlequin. Natashya Wilson, the executive editor of Harlequin Teen, will be heading up the new imprint.