Beliefs Culture Jana Riess: Flunking Sainthood Opinion

Mormon authors take center stage with YA fiction

Why are so many LDS writers succeeding in YA genre fiction?

James Dashner. Shannon Hale. Kiersten White. Ally Condie. Brandon Sanderson. And so, so many other New York Times bestselling authors writing for teens and tweens are Mormons.

What gives?

This was the question behind my June 29 presentation for the Mormon Arts Center festival in New York, the video of which is here.

Bottom line: In both Mormonism and genre fiction, it’s all about community.





About the author

Jana Riess

Senior columnist Jana Riess is the author of many books, including "The Prayer Wheel" (Random House/Convergent, 2018) and "The Next Mormons: How Millennials Are Changing the LDS Church" (Oxford University Press, 2019). She has a PhD in American religious history from Columbia University.

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  • An interesting talk, and could definitely have something going for it. My best friend makes a living writing genre fiction (superhero, in his case). And while most of the books focus on one person, most superheroing is a team sport, all about protecting and upholding community.