Must-Read Young Adult Titles to Add to Your TBR List!

Fantasy

Blood at the Root

Blood at the Root By LaDarrion Williams

A teenager on the run from his past finds the family he never knew existed and the community he never knew he needed at an HBCU for the young, Black, and magical. Enroll in this fresh fantasy debut unlike anything you've seen before.

Ten years ago, Malik's life changed forever the night his mother mysteriously vanished and he discovered he had uncontrollable powers. Since then, he has kept his abilities hidden, looking out for himself and his younger foster brother, Taye. Now, at 17, Malik is finally ready to start a new life for both of them, far from the trauma of his past. However, a daring act to rescue Taye reveals an unexpected connection with his long-lost grandmother: a legendary conjurer with ties to a hidden magical university that Malik’s mother attended.

At Caiman University, Malik’s eyes are opened to a future he never could have envisioned for himself— one that includes the reappearance of his first love, Alexis. His search for answers about his heritage, his powers, and what really happened to his mother exposes the cracks in their magical community as it faces a reawakened evil dating back to the Haitian Revolution. Together with Alexis, Malik discovers a lot beneath the surface at Caiman: feuding covens and magical politics, forbidden knowledge and buried mysteries. 

In a wholly unique saga of family, history and community, Malik must embrace his legacy to save what's left of his old family as well as his new one. Exploring the roots and secrets that connect us in an unforgettable contemporary setting, this heart-pounding fantasy series opener is a rich tapestry of atmosphere, intrigue, and emotion.

Liar's Test

Liar's Test By Ambelin Kwaymullina

A gripping YA fantasy with a deadly contest to win a crown, a fierce heroine determined to right the wrongs done to her people, and a smoldering love story that could change everything...

I didn’t want to rule the Risen. Wreak a little havoc upon them, though? That was something else entirely.

Bell Silverleaf is a liar.

It’s how she’s survived. It’s how all Treesingers have survived, after they were invaded by the Risen and their gods. But now—thanks to some political maneuvering—Bell is in the Queen’s Test. She’s one of seven girls competing in deadly challenges to determine who rules for the next twenty-five years. If Bell wins, she’ll use the power to help her people and get her revenge on the Risen.

But Bell doesn’t know how much she’s been lied to. She’s part of a conspiracy stretching back generations, and she’s facing much bigger dangers than the Queen’s Test. She’s up against the gods themselves.

Getting hold of that crown might just be the least of her problems.

Aboriginal writer Ambelin Kwaymullina has created a fast-paced, twisty narrative and an unforgettable heroine inspired by the strength and power of Aboriginal women.

The Mirror of Beasts

The Mirror of Beasts By Alexandra Bracken

#1 New York Times bestselling author Alexandra Bracken is back with the electrifying sequel to SILVER IN THE BONE, in which fresh betrayal ignites ancient magic to wake the dead, and a cursed girl with no magic of her own must put the past to rest.

With the dream of Avalon in ruins, Tamsin and her friends are all that stands in the way of Lord Death's plans to unleash the horrors of Anwnn on the world of the living. As the Wild Hunt carves a bloody path across continents, Tamsin is mustering allies, tracking down powerful artifacts, and traversing into new otherlands in search of a way to stop him.

Legend tells of a “Mirror of Beasts,” powerful enough to trap even Lord Death in its accursed glass, but the mirror is not all that it seems. Tamsin must confront her own darkest secrets if she hopes to tap the mirror's strength to defeat her enemies.

Arthurian legend bleeds into contemporary action, and scars of the past are torn open anew by a starcrossed love that refuses to go quietly. This riveting conclusion to the Silver in the Bone duology will hold you in its thrall until the very last page.

Deep Is the Fen

Deep Is the Fen By Lili Wilkinson

Get lost in the newest fantasy from the author of A Hunger of Thorns, on a beguiling journey behind the closed doors of a sinister secret society. Featuring a steamy enemies-to-lovers romance and a fight for the witching world that will get your heart racing.

Merry doesn’t need a happily-ever-after. Her life in the charming, idyllic town of Candlecott is fine just as it is. Simple, happy, and with absolutely no magic. Magic only ever leads to trouble.

But Merry’s best friend, Teddy, is joining the Toadmen—a secret society who specialize in backward thinking and suspiciously supernatural traditions—and Merry is determined to stop him. Even if it means teaming up with the person she hates most: her academic archnemesis, Caraway Boswell, an ice-cold snob who hides his true face under a glamour.

An ancient Toad ritual is being held in the sinister Deeping Fen, and if Merry doesn’t rescue Teddy before it’s finished, she’ll lose him forever. But the Toadmen have been keeping dangerous secrets, and so has Caraway. The farther Merry travels into Deeping Fen’s foul waters, the more she wonders if she’s truly come to save her friend . . . or if she’s walking straight into a trap.

There’s nothing the Toadmen love more than a damsel  in distress.

Sci-Fi

Snowglobe

Snowglobe By Soyoung Park; translated by Joungmin Lee Comfort

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • The gorgeous first edition hardcover of Snowglobe will feature two covers in one (a beautifully illustrated hardcover underneath the stunning jacket) and foil-stamped interior papers at the beginning and end of the book!

In a world of constant winter, only the citizens of the climate-controlled city of Snowglobe can escape the bitter cold—but this perfect society is hiding dark and dangerous secrets within its frozen heart. A groundbreaking Korean novel translated into English for the first time!

The Hunger Games meets Squid Game in Soyoung Park's dystopian thriller Snowglobe” –Entertainment Weekly

Enclosed under a vast dome, Snowglobe is the last place on Earth that’s warm. Outside Snowglobe is a frozen wasteland, and every day, citizens face the icy world to get to their jobs at the power plant, where they produce the energy Snowglobe needs. Their only solace comes in the form of twenty-four-hour television programming streamed directly from the domed city.

The residents of Snowglobe have everything: fame, fortune, and above all, safety from the desolation outside their walls. In exchange, their lives are broadcast to the less fortunate outside, who watch eagerly, hoping for the chance to one day become actors themselves.

Chobahm lives for the time she spends watching the shows produced inside Snowglobe. Her favorite? Goh Around, starring Goh Haeri, Snowglobe’s biggest star—and, it turns out, the key to getting Chobahm her dream life.

Because Haeri is dead, and Chobahm has been chosen to take her place. Only, life inside Snowglobe is nothing like what you see on television. Reality is a lie, and truth seems to be forever out of reach.

Translated for the first time into English from the original Korean, Snowglobe is a groundbreaking exploration of personal identity, and the future of the world as we know it. It is the winner of the Changbi X Kakaopage Young Adult Novel Award.

The Heart of the World

The Heart of the World By Amie Kaufman

Magic and sacrifice will collide as lovers and gods, enemies and allies vie for the fate of the world in this heart-pounding sequel to THE ISLES OF THE GODS, which Stephanie Garber called "deliciously diabolical and full of heart."

Storm: Dawn of a Goddess

Storm: Dawn of a Goddess By Tiffany D. Jackson

Before she was the super hero Storm of Marvel's X-Men, she was Ororo of Cairo—a teenaged thief on the streets of Egypt, until her growing powers catch the eye of a villain who steals people's souls. An epic origin story that will blow you away, from the New York Times bestselling author of Monday's Not Coming.

The gorgeous first edition hardcover of Storm: Dawn of a Goddess will feature an electrifying dust jacket that glows in the dark!

"Tiffany D. Jackson has crafted the story of Storm that the world has been waiting for!" —Nicola Yoon, #1 New York Times bestselling author

Few can weather the storm.

As a thief on the streets of Cairo, Ororo Munroe is an expert at blending in—keeping her blue eyes low and her white hair beneath a scarf. Stealth is her specialty . . . especially since strange things happen when she loses control.

Lately, Ororo has been losing control more often, setting off sudden rainstorms and mysterious winds . . . and attracting dangerous attention. When she is forced to run from the Shadow King, a villain who steals people's souls, she has nowhere to turn to but herself. There is something inside her, calling her across Africa, and the hidden truth of her heritage is close enough to taste.

But as Ororo nears the secrets of her past, her powers grow stronger and the Shadow King veers closer and closer. Can she outrun the shadows that chase her? Or can she step into the spotlight and embrace the coming storm?

In her first speculative novel, New York Times bestselling author Tiffany D. Jackson casts a breathtaking spell with one of Marvel's most beloved characters, and brings the superhero Storm to life as you've never seen her before.

The Colliding Worlds of Mina Lee

The Colliding Worlds of Mina Lee By Ellen Oh

When a Korean American teenage artist gets sucked into the world of her own web comic, she must find a way out with the help of a cute boy all while facing off against a villainous corporation. Inspired by the A-ha's "Take on Me" music video, this entertaining YA novel is a grounded speculative fiction adventure from a founding member of We Need Diverse Books.

"Sincere, smart, and meta…this stirring high-concept novel… stands out from the rest."-Soman Chainani, author of THE SCHOOL FOR GOOD AND EVIL series

"A lighthearted story with touches of romance and fantasy, told with K-drama flair." —Kirkus Reviews

Mina has become the hero of her own story. Literally.

When Mina Lee woke up on Saturday morning for SAT prep, she did NOT expect to:

       1. Nearly be fried by a superhero who turned out to be a supervillain.
        2. Come face to face with Jin, the handsome boy of her dreams.
        3. Discover a conspiracy involving the evil corporation Merco that she created.

And it’s all happening in her fictional world. Mina is trapped in the story she created. Now it’s up to her to save everyone. Even if it means losing Jin forever.

From the award-winning author of Finding Junie Kim and co-founder of We Need Diverse Books, Ellen Oh. In the speculative fiction adventure The Colliding Worlds of Mina Lee, a teenage artist grapples with her first love, grief, and learning how to take charge of her own life.

Thrillers

Wander in the Dark

Wander in the Dark By Jumata Emill

In this new pulse-pounding thriller from the author of The Black Queen, two brothers must come together to solve the murder of the most popular girl in school after one of them is caught fleeing the scene of her death.

Amir Trudeau only goes to his half brother Marcel’s birthday party because of Chloe Danvers. Chloe is rich, and hot, and fits right into the perfect life Marcel inherited when their father left Amir’s mother to start a new family with Marcel’s mom. But Chloe is hot enough for Amir to forget that for one night.

Does she want to hook up? Or is she trying to meddle in the estranged brothers’ messy family drama? Amir can’t tell. He doesn’t know what Chloe wants from him when, in the final hours of Mardi Gras, she asks him to take her home and stay—her parents are away and she doesn’t want to be alone. 

Amir never finds out, because when he wakes up, Chloe is dead—stabbed while he was passed out on the couch. And in no time, Amir becomes the only suspect. A Black teenager caught fleeing the scene of a rich white girl’s murder? All of New Orleans agrees: the case is open-and-shut.

Amir is innocent. He has a lawyer, but unless someone can figure out who really killed Chloe, things don’t look good for him. His number one ally? Marcel. Their relationship is messy, but Marcel knows that Amir isn’t a murderer—and maybe proving his innocence will repair the rift between them.

To find Chloe’s killer, Amir and Marcel need to dig into her secrets. And what they find is darker than either could have guessed. Parents will go to any lengths to protect their children, and in a city as old as New Orleans, the right family connections can bury even the ugliest truths.

The Color of a Lie

The Color of a Lie By Kim Johnson

In 1955, a Black family passes for white and moves to a “Whites Only” town in the suburbs. Caught between two worlds, a teen boy puts his family at risk as he uncovers racist secrets about his suburb. A new social justice thriller from the acclaimed author of This Is My America!

Calvin knows how to pass for white. He's done it plenty of times before. For his friends in Chicago, when they wanted food but weren't allowed in a restaurant. For work, when he and his dad would travel for the Green Book.

This is different.

After a tragedy in Chicago forces the family to flee, they resettle in an idyllic all-white suburban town in search of a better life. Calvin's father wants everyone to embrace their new white lifestyles, but it's easier said than done. Hiding your true self is exhausting -- which leads Calvin across town where he can make friends who know all of him...and spend more time with his new crush, Lily. But when Calvin starts unraveling dark secrets about the white town and its inhabitants, passing starts to feel even more suffocating--and dangerous--than he could have imagined. 

Expertly weaving together real historical events with important reflections on being Black in America, acclaimed author Kim Johnson powerfully connects readers to the experience of being forced to live a life-threatening lie or embrace an equally deadly truth.

Six of Sorrow

Six of Sorrow By Amanda Linsmeier

Sixteen years ago, six girls were born on the same day—and now, on their birthday, one of them is missing. From the author of Starlings comes a story about small-towns, friendships, and the terrifying things your parents don't tell you, that's perfect for fans of Yellowjackets.

For most of her life, Isabeau and her five best friends were inseparable—amazingly enough, the six girls even shared a birthday. Then a rift caused their friendships to fracture, and Iz lost everyone except Reuel, the only one who didn’t abandon her.

Until now. The night of their sixteenth birthday, Isabeau leaves Reuel sitting on her front porch and heads home—and in the morning, Reuel is missing. She’s gone for two days, and when she reappears, there’s something wrong with her. She’s sick. Really sick. And she doesn’t remember anything that happened while she was gone.

If there’s any bright side to the situation, it’s that Reuel’s peculiar disappearance brings the six girls back together. Their sisterhood feels as strong as it was years ago, but when another one of them disappears, they all agree that they must have more in common than simply their birthday. They all feel it. Something’s been waiting for them, and that something has come to claim them one by one.

Deep in their bones, they know—it’s just a matter of time until they they’re all taken. And if they don’t save themselves, no one will.

Such Charming Liars

Such Charming Liars By Karen M. McManus

The newest mystery from the author One of Us Is Lying, the Queen of thrillers, Karen M. McManus! When mother-daughter grifters set out on their final job, the heist gets deadly and dangerously personal.

For all of Kat’s life, it’s just been her and her mother, Jamie—except for the forty-eight hours when Jamie was married and Kat had a stepbrother, Liam. That all ended in an epic divorce, and Kat and Liam haven’t spoken since.

Now Jamie is a jewel thief trying to go straight, but she has one last job—at billionaire Ross Sutherland’s birthday party. And Kat has figured out a way to tag along. What Kat doesn’t know, though, is that there are two surprise guests at the dazzling Sutherland compound that weekend. The last two people she wants to run into. Liam and his father—a serial scammer who has his sights set on Ross Sutherland’s youngest daughter.

Kat and Liam are on a collision course to disaster, and when a Sutherland dies, they realize they might actually be in the killer’s crosshairs themselves. Somehow Kat and Liam are the new targets, and they can’t trust anyone—except each other.

Or can they? Because if there’s one thing both Kat and Liam know, it’s how to lie. They learned from the best.

Romance

Wide Awake Now

Wide Awake Now By David Levithan

From the New York Times bestselling author of Every Day, this is a queer love story set against the backdrop of the 2024 presidential election, in a reimagining of David Levithan’s 2004 novel Wide Awake.

When David Levithan published Wide Awake in 2004, he set it in an imagined 2024, where a gay Jewish man had just been elected president of the United States, until a governor decides that some election results in his state are invalid, awarding crucial votes to the other candidate and his fellow party member. What follows is the story of teens Jimmy and Duncan as they explore their relationship, their politics, and their country.

In Wide Awake Now, David Levithan is flipping the script and rewriting Jimmy and Duncan’s story in the real 2024, rather than his imagined version. This is a protest novel for today.

Once again, David Levithan proves the critical importance of standing up for what you believe in and the cost of apathy in today’s political climate.

The Last Boyfriends Rules for Revenge

The Last Boyfriends Rules for Revenge By Matthew Hubbard

A queer coming-of-age about three teenage boys in small town Alabama who set out to get revenge on their ex-boyfriends and end up starting a student rebellion. Perfect for fans of Becky Albertalli and Jason June!

Ezra Hayes has always felt like a background character compared to BFFs Lucas and Finley. He would do anything to be seen as a romantic lead, even if it means keeping his boyfriend, Presley, a secret. But when he discovers that Presley is a lying cheater, and his best friends are having boy problems of their own, they want revenge.

Their plans to get even involve sabotaging the largest party of the year, entering a drag competition, and even having Ezra run against his ex for Winter Formal King. Then the school district starts to actively censor queer voices with their Watch What You Say initiative. Taking to TikTok to vent frustrations, Ezra begins “The Last Boyfriends Student Rebellion.”

Between ex-boyfriend drama and navigating viral TikTok fame, Ezra realizes this rebellion is about something more important than revenge. It’s a battle cry to fight back against outdated opinions and redefine what it means to be queer in small town Alabama.

Wild About You

Wild About You By Kaitlyn Hill

Two total opposites. One race through the Great Outdoors. In this grumpy-sunshine teen romance from the author of Love from Scratch and Not Here to Stay Friends, the trail to true love doesn't always come with a map.

Natalie Hart has always been loud, unfiltered, and unapologetically herself. But then comes her freshman year of college, when she loses her merit scholarship and gains one pesky little anxiety diagnosis.

Hesitant to take out more student loans, Natalie decides to shoot her shot and applies to Wild Adventures, a popular outdoorsy reality show. Sure, Natalie prefers her twelve-step skincare routine to roughing it on the Appalachian Trail while competing in challenges against other college kids, but that scholarship prize money is calling her name. High risk, high reward, right?

Enter Finn Markum, her randomly assigned, capital-O Outdoorsy teammate whose growl could rival a black bear. These partners have more friction than a pair of new hiking boots. Or is it flirtation? Turns out falling in love might be the wildest adventure of all...

Love Requires Chocolate

Love Requires Chocolate By Ravynn K. Stringfield

A new romance series that's Emily In Paris meets A Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants! In this first book, budding theatre nerd Whitney Curry studies abroad in Paris, France, where she meets her match in a cute, aloof footballer.

Whitney Curry is primed to have an epic semester abroad. She’s created the perfect itinerary and many, many to-do lists after collecting every detail possible about Paris, France. Thus, she anticipates a grand adventure filled with vintage boutiques, her idol Josephine Baker’s old stomping grounds, and endless plays sure to inspire the ones she writes and—ahem—directs!
But all is not as she imagined when she’s dropped off at her prestigious new Parisian lycée. A fish out of water, Whitney struggles to juggle schoolwork, homesickness, and mastering the French language. Luckily, she lives for the drama. Literally.
Cue French tutor Thierry Magnon, a grumpy yet très handsome soccer star, who’s determined to show Whitney the real Paris. Is this type-A theater nerd ready to see how lessons on the City of Lights can turn into lessons on love?

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