YA to watch for in 2018

Young adult fiction shows no sign of slowing down, but how to navigate the masses of books out there? Well, here are seven YA novels coming out in the first half of 2017 which should be on your reading list.

The Fandom by Anna Day
Chicken House, January 4
Violet is a member of the fandom for The Gallows Dance – her favourite YA story and film, set in a post-apocalyptic London. On a trip to Comic Con she and her friends are catapulted by a freak accident into the world of The Gallows Dance, where they must put the plot back on track and get out before disaster strikes. This is a treat for anyone who’s part of a fandom, or who is a fan of fandoms.

Love, Hate & Other Filters by Samira Ahmed
Hot Key Books, January 18
Maya lives in Batavia, Illinois, and is in her final year of high school. She wants to go to New York and become a filmmaker, her parents want her to study law in Chicago, and that’s not the only thing they disagree on – Maya’s mum wants her to marry an Indian boy (ideally the handsome and successful Kareem), while Maya is too busy crushing on her classmate Phil. When a terrorist attacks, Maya and her parents must both face hatred, and decide how they want to fight back.

I Am Thunder by Muhammad Khan
Macmillan Children’s Books, January 25
Muzna Saleem, aged 15, is expected to get educated, become a doctor, and then get married to someone from Pakistan. But she loves writing and dreams of becoming novelist instead, and when high-school hottie Arif Malik takes an interest in her, it seems like things are going well for her. But Arif and his brother are angry at the West for demonising Islam, and risk pulling Muzna into their world. How will she choose between betraying her heart and betraying her beliefs?

The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton
Gollancz, February 8
In Orléans, the people are born grey and damned, and only a Belle’s powers can make them beautiful. Camellia Beauregard wants to be the favourite Belle – the one chosen by the queen to tend to the royal family. But once Camellia and her Belle sisters arrive at court, it becomes clear that being the favourite is not everything she always dreamed it would be. When the queen asks Camellia to break the rules she lives by to save the ailing princess, she faces an impossible decision: protect herself and the way of the Belles, or risk her own life, and change the world forever. (You can read the first two chapters of The Belles here.)

Unveiling Venus by Sophia Bennett
Stripes, February 8
This is the sequel to Bennett’s Finding Ophelia, in which Mary Adams set out to become a Pre-Raphelite muse, and reinvented herself as Persephone Lavelle. In Unveiling Venus, Mary’s secret identity is exposed, so she flees the scandal by escaping to Venice. Lost among the twisting alleyways and shadowy canals she encounters a mysterious, masked young man. He offers her the world, but at what price?

Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
Macmillan Children’s Books, March 8
This is one for fantasy geeks everywhere. Zelie lives in a world where magic has been outlawed, and now she has the chance to bring it back. With the help of a rogue princess, Zelie must outwit and outrun the crown prince of Orisha, who is determined to eradicate magic for good. Zelie must learn to control her own powers, as well as deal with outside forces, and her growing feelings for an enemy.

Clean by Juno Dawson
Quercus Children’s Books, April 5
After almost overdosing, socialite Lexi Volkov is forced into an exclusive rehab facility. From there, the only way is up for Lexi and her fellow inmates, including the mysterious Brady. As she faces her demons, Lexi realises love is the most powerful drug of all. Clean is described as “Gossip Girl meets Girl, Interrupted, with a side of Orange is the New Black”. Who can resist that pitch?

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