Many of the most popular YA novels are pretty brutal, rape and murder are a common ingredient. Many show teenagers having sex. But how far can you go, before you cross the line into adult fiction, simply by being too detailed or too extreme?
I'm writing a novel about a young woman who gets drawn into a terrorist network and commits some atrocious acts before she turns from this path. I attempted to describe what she does in a way that makes the reader experience some of the distress the protagonists feels witnessing he own deeds. I feel this is integral to the development of the character and the direction of the plot. It may not be, but this question does not aim at what is necessary, but what is allowable. Do I leave YA fiction with this?