Christian fiction is not a new phenomenon. I grew up reading Catherine Marshall and Janette Oke’s Love Comes Softly series in the 80s. In the 90s, the Left Behind series gained widespread notoriety on the literary scene.
Within African American Christian fiction, there are several well known authors including Jacquelin Thomas, Kendra Norman Bellamy, Michelle Andrea Bowen, Vanessa Davis Griggs, and Reshonda Tate Billingsley.
If we dig a bit deeper into the genre of Christian fiction, we find a subgenre known as YA Christian fiction being written by authors including Jacquelin Thomas (The Divine Series), Reshonda Tate Billingsley (The Good Girlz Series), and Stephanie Perry Moore (Payton Skky Series).
Of the three authors, Stephanie Perry Moore has written the majority of her books for children and teens. Visit her website and you will see what I mean. Don’t forget to check out her 28 Days Later spotlight as well. Stephanie is akin to a YA Christian fiction Meg Cabot with the number of series under her belt – Payton Skky, Perry Skky, Jr., Laurel Shadrach, Faith Thomas, Carmen Browne – and the list of series continue to grow.
Christian Fiction author Victoria Christopher Murray joins the ranks of fellow adult authors Jacquelin Thomas and Reshonda Tate Billingsley as she introduces a series written for young adult readers. Known for titles including Joy, Temptation, and Grown Folks Business, Murray has enlarged her writing territory to include teens with a four book series. The Divine Divas Teen Series debuted in March 2008 with Diamond and will follow with India, Veronique, and Aaliyah.
The series centers around four young ladies who have been best friends since they were toddlers. The four friends formed a singing group to compete in a talent show in their hometown of Los Angeles. Diamond is the self-proclaimed leader of the group who loves to sing and convinced her friends to form the group. While she hopes to create her own fashion line, BFF India wants to create her own line of jewelry. Sophomore class president Veronique also loves to sing, but is very politically aware and is driven to keeping her friends and classmates aware of the issues that impact them all. Rounding out the talented, diverse foursome is Aaliyah who is in the group because she supports her friends in all of their endeavors, but her biggest aspiration in life is to attend MIT to become a nuclear physicist.
For the older young adult readers, self-published author Fon James emerged last year with her debut title Back and Forth. Set on the campus of Jackson State University in Mississippi, four college seniors who are all in the school’s marching band juggle college life as well as what happens when sex and alcohol enter the equation. Join Faith, Remi, Gavin, and Chrissy as they work through a situation that threatens their foursome.
The element of faith within fiction exists today for children of all ages. These are five authors who you can check out and pass along to the young adults in your life.