October 26, 2018

HarperCollins puts a YA novel on Snapchat


Remember how Instagram featured the launch of Insta Novels via the New York Public Library? Now Snapchat is stepping up to the plate with the launch of their YA novel…TV adaptation. Not nearly as cool as putting books on social media to encourage people to read, but we’ll take it.

As reported in Publishers Weekly, the new partnership between Snapchat and HarperCollins Children’s Books. Their first series premiered this past Tuesday: an adaptation of The Dead Girls Detective Agency by Suzy Cox. The books follows a teenage girl who must solve her own murder so she can bust out of purgatory. The series will be cut into 15 five-minute episodes released daily, though the Snap Originals site currently lists only eight.

The odd partnership came about with the help of digital production studio Insurrection. “We were attracted to Insurrection because they’re a small, very nimble group of people,” explained Jean McGinley, Vice President and Associate Publisher at HarperCollins Children’s Books. “They have a really great approach to getting things developed.”

Similar to the NYPL’s Insta Novels, the team behind this new series believes that releasing this on social media can provide a new and inventive way for YA adaptations to reach teenage audiences. “We’re interested to see how teens are going to come to this type of content,” said McGinley.

So, does this series mark the beginning of a new friendship between HarperCollins and Snapchat? McGinley confirmed with PW that there are some plans to adapt “several of our properties” with Snapchat down the line, but specific details have yet to be announced. But if the keen interest in teenage audiences is any indication, it’ll probably be another YA title.

You can find the new series on Snapchat’s Discover page.




Alyssa Monera is an intern at Melville House.