Sitting here with crusty grey snow still piled outside my window, I've come to believe that the only redeeming value of late March (especially if you live in the U.S. Northeast) is the anticipation of reading all the sequels you've been dying for and the excitement of discovering brand-new favorite authors.
So in no special order, here are 11 YA's I'm looking forward to in 2015. Hopefully, there's something for everyone.
The Wicked Will Rise (Dorothy Must Die series #2), by Danielle Paige. I'm a HUGE fan of the Oz books; I must have read them all six or seven times each as a kid. They were just…yeah. I'm a total Oz nerd. And this series could have been a disaster.
But Danielle Paige pulls it off. She not only pulls it off, she makes you laugh and shriek and fall in love with Amy Gumm and have nightmares about some of your most (previously) beloved characters. Happily, there's a bunch of prequel novellas out now that you can read while you're waiting for the March 30 release of the next in this fab series.
The Alex Crow, by Andrew Smith. Since reading the genre-smashing masterpiece that is Grasshopper Jungle, I will buy anything at all that Andrew decides to write, ever. Nuff said.
And in fact, I just scored a signed copy last weekend when I caught the brilliant author himself at Oblong Books in Rhinebeck, woot!
(Available March 3, so what are you waiting for?)
Red Queen, by Victoria Aveyard. I see it on a lot of lists, I love the creepy cover, and the class warfare storyline sounds intriguing.
I'm a sucker for a good, juicy fantasy, and Sam Hawksmoor describes this one as a "mash up of Ancient Rome and Marie Antoinette with a dash of Catherine Fisher's Incarceron and Ridley Scott's Gladiator, not to mention some of Marvel Comic's box of tricks..." Count me in.
(Out as of February 10!)
Brazen (Gilded series #3), by Christina Farley. This won't be hitting bookshelves until September 29, and the wait will doubtless be agonizing for Farley's legions of fans. The Gilded series is so unique and well-written, blending Korean mythology with action and romance and fantastic, finely-drawn characters. No cover yet, but if it's anything like the first two, we're in for something luminous and very special. I'm pre-ordering as soon as that link goes live.
Gathering Deep (Sweet Unrest series #2), by Lisa Maxwell. If you drool at the thought of digging into a spicy gumbo of voodoo and New Orleans and mystery and Gothic thrills, you've hit the jackpot with this awesome series (unlike my painful mixed metaphors).
The absolutely beautiful cover was just unveiled last month. Expected pub date: October 8.
Six of Crows (The Dregs series #1), by Leigh Bardugo. Confession: I haven't yet read the Grisha Trilogy, mostly because my TBR pile is such a tottering skyscraper. If it had eyes, it would be glaring at me accusingly.
But the series has been reviewed so highly, and sounds so like my bag, that I'm definitely grabbing it. Six of Crows isn't out until October 6 so there's plenty of time to catch up on Bardugo's earlier work.
Half Wild, (The Half Bad trilogy, series #2), by Sally Green. I loved the first one so hard, with its nonexistent moral distinction between the white and black witches, and the tough as nails, dead sexy boy narrator. Green's style is clean and pared down to the essentials, with pacing that just doesn't stop. I think I read the first one in a single sitting.
The new cover is extremely similar, but who cares? They're both super cool.
None of the Above, by I.W. Gregorio. I adore unconventional narrators who reflect the nuances and complexities of the real world, and this story about an intersex teen sounds like it achieves the one thing I think great fiction does better than any other art form: opening your mind to the direct experiences of another person who sees the world differently than you do.
Pub date: April 7.
The Girl at Midnight, by Melissa Grey. This also comes out in April. All I know is that it's set beneath the streets of New York City and has magic and some ancient race called the Avicen. For some reason, I just love subterranean adventure stories (Neverwhere, anyone?), and I grew up in Manhattan, so this hits all my buttons.
The Walls Around Us, by Nova Ren Suma. If you enjoy lyrical and dark and moving, with strong, complex female characters, Nova's for you. And it's out as of yesterday!
The Last Star (Fifth Wave series #3), by Rick Yancey. This now has a cover and pub date: September 8.