There are a TON of new books I’ve got my eye on this month, so let’s not waste any time!
Walk on Earth a Stranger, by Rae Carson
The Scorpion Rules, by Erin Bow
Dumplin', by Julie Murphy
The Hired Girl, by Laura Amy Schlitz
Honor Girl, by Maggie Thrash
I’ve already read these five—I wrote about Walk on Earth a Stranger and The Scorpion Rules for this column last month, and about Dumplin’ back in June—and I’m a fan of every single one of them. The Hired Girl is the fictional diary of a 1911 farm girl who runs away to the city to become a “hired girl” (basically a live-in maid and kitchen helper). If you’re a fan of Anne of Green Gables, this is absolutely not one to miss—just like Anne Shirley, Joan is smart, funny, talkative, passionate, supremely romantic, desperate to learn, and prone to getting herself into scrapes. Honor Girl is a graphic memoir about first love at an all-girls’ summer camp—though it should be noted that it’s just as much about coming-of-age and figuring out who you are as it is about falling in love—and it’s honest, complex, heart-breaking in more than one way, and completely lovely.
Daughters unto Devils, by Amy Lukavics
Out of Darkness, by Ashley Hope Pérez
Everything, Everything, by Nicola Yoon
I’ve heard excellent things about all three of these! Daughters unto Devils is historical horror—Kirkus called it a “nightmare on the prairie”—and involves a girl trying to hide her pregnancy while living in a haunted cabin with her family. Out of Darkness is about a star-crossed love between a Mexican girl and an African-American boy in a 1930s Texas town, and I’ve heard that it’s fantastically good as well as fantastically gut-wrenching. And Everything, Everything looks like it’ll be a great antidote to all of that darkness, in that it’s a warm first-love story about a girl who has lived her whole life inside—she’s got a compromised immune system—and the boy who moves in next door.
Vivian Apple Needs a Miracle, by Katie Coyle
Queen of Shadows, by Sarah J. Maas
Beastly Bones, by William Ritter
The sequel to Vivian Apple at the End of the World, the next book in the Throne of Glass series, and another Jackaby book! I was a big fan of Vivian, the Maas series just keeps getting better and better, and I ADORED Jackaby. Excitement all around!
I Crawl Through It, by A.S. King
Two authors who never do the same thing twice; two authors on my They Write It, I Read It list.
All American Boys, by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely
Alternating narrators take on race and violence and law enforcement and justice—given the importance and the cultural and political relevancy of the subject matter, I can’t believe I haven’t seen press about this one ANYWHERE.
What We Saw, by Aaron Hartzler
This is another one that deals with an entirely difficult, but entirely important topic: rape culture. It’s a story that largely parallels the case that played out in Steubenville two years ago, and I can’t imagine that it’ll be an easy read, but I’m certainly not going to miss it.
Cut Both Ways, by Carrie Mesrobian
Glowing critical reviews AND a ton of both 5-star and 1-star reviews at GoodReads? Divisive books always intrigue me, so I’m excited to read this one. The fact that it’s by Mesrobian—considered by many to be writing some of the strongest contemporary YA out there at the moment, but who I somehow still haven’t read—is icing on the cake.
The Shadow Behind the Stars, by Rebecca Hahn
A girl tracks down the Fates and demands answers. THAT SOUNDS AMAZING.
One, by Sarah Crossan
Verse novel about conjoined twins. GIVE IT TO ME NOW.
Serpentine, by Cindy Pon
Fantasy about a girl who is a handmaiden by day and a human-serpent hybrid by night. The Kirkus review promises strong threads about friendship and economic class, plenty of romance, and an “imminent demon invasion”! I can’t really ask for more in a book.
The Dogs, by Allan Stratton
A ghost story set in a “creep house” told by what I suspect is an entirely unreliable narrator. I love unreliable narrators in horror stories—when you can’t trust the storyteller, everything is THAT MUCH CREEPIER.
Untwine, by Edwidge Danticat
Is this Danticat’s first YA novel? Regardless, I am all over reading it, because Danticat.
Paper Hearts, by Meg Wiviott
A Holocaust story about friendship and love and family and hope. I admit to being scared to read this one—when a short review can choke me up, it speaks to the power of the book itself—but it sounds like a must-read.
And, my friends, that is just a taste—there are so, so many more coming! Which ones are you looking forward to?
In addition to running a library in rural Maine, Leila Roy blogs at Bookshelves of Doom, is a contributor at Book Riot, hangs out on Twitter a lot—possibly too much—and watches a shocking amount of television. Her cat is a murderer.