Ladies and gentlemen, bloggers and lurkers, friends and followers – I give you my MAMMOTH most anticipated books of 2013 list!
So many fantastic books coming out next year (and a few I can already attest to being brilliant *cough* Gayle Forman *cough*!).
But just a small note – the below books are only those that have covers at the moment. I’m also ridiculously excited for Cath Crowley’s The Howling Boy, Wildlife by Fiona Wood, All The Rage by Courtney Summers the second book in Ambelin Kwaymullina’s The Tribe series and many, many others. So below is really just a small slice of what’s to come next year (and then there will be those little gems I stumble across – gotta love the ones you never saw coming too).
And, please, feel free to recommend me more books in the comments section!
Splintered by A.G. Howard
I've long been interested in the story-behind-the-story of ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’ after reading a fiction book based on the twisted relationship between Alice Liddell and Lewis Carroll So a book that combines the fact and fiction of Liddell/Carroll and Wonderland in a young adult story is definitely on my must-read list for next year.
Just One Day Just One Day #1 by Gayle Forman
This is probably the most anticipated contemporary young adult book to be coming out of 2013, with many fans harbouring high-high-high expectations. But allow me to put minds at ease, since I was (extraordinarily!) lucky enough to get my hands on an advanced copy of ‘Just One Day’ (this is what happens when you have lovely friends who go to the YA Lit Symposium & YALLFest!) Petals, - it is WONDERFUL! I’d say this book is New Adult, because Forman covers a gamut of emotions; everything from first loves, to drifting friendships, discovered independence and altering relationships with parents. Fair warning – the ending will suckerpunch you. But fear not!, because the follow-up (this time from the guy’s POV) will be coming out in September 2013. PHEW!
Alex As Well by Alyssa Brugman
I have a copy of Brugman's 'Finding Grace' waiting for me in my TBR, when LO and BEHOLD, she has a brand new book coming out with Text. And this one sounds brilliant! I wrote recently about the severe lack of LGBT books in the young adult genre, so I'm really happy to discover that 'Alex As Well' deals with themes of sexuality and identity.
The Tragedy Paper by Elizabeth LaBan
Great title. Plus, it’s not everyday you read about albinos, let alone a 17-year-old albino.
Shadowlands by Kate Brian
That cover = *drool*
Prodigy Legend #2 by Marie Lu
Lu’s debut ‘Legend’ was so HUGE and left readers with so many nail-biting questions, I’m edge-of-my-seat excited for the follow-up.
Nobody But Us by Kristin Halbrook
I love this cover! And I love the pitch: ‘Bonnie & Clyde meets If I Stay’ It’s like contemporary-young-adult-overload. I. NEED. IT. NOW!
Level 2 The Memory Chronicles #1 by Lenore Appelhans
I admit: the Dystopian genre is starting to lose its shine for me. Or at least that’s what I thought, and then I read the blurb for Appelhans debut young adult book and I’m right back to being on the bandwagon. What hooked me was discovering that Level 2 is “a stark white afterlife located between our world and the next” a place between Heaven and Earth. Dystopian afterlife story? I am so there.
Altered by Jennifer Rush
Mantra to repeat: I will not be swayed by a hot-boy cover, I will not be swayed by a hot-boy cover, I will not be swayed by a hot-boy cover, I will not be swayed by a. . . Oh! Who am I kidding?! This book got me hook, line and cover.
Prophecy The Dragon King Chronicles #1 by Ellen Oh
I've become a big fan of TV series ‘Game of Thrones’, but I just can’t commit to reading an epic six-book fantasy series. But I can get excited about a series that, upon reading the blurb, got me thinking that winter is coming to YA. This line in the blurb: Kira’s the only female in the king’s army, and the prince’s bodyguard – got me thinking that Kira sounded a little bit like Arya Stark, and that’s a female protagonist I want to read!
Life in Outer Space by Melissa Keil
This is the first book to come out of the Hardie Grant Egmont Ampersand Project. I’m so proud of Aussie YA, so I love the idea of Ampersand unearthing new talent for young readers and making a point of publishing first-time authors. Ampersand just goes to show what a powerhouse YA has become in recent years, particularly in Australia where our young adult authors are nationally and internationally beloved! I also adore this cover and the blurb has me most intrigued… watch this space for Melissa Keil’s dazzling debut, but also the entire Ampersand Project is one to keep your eye on!
All This Could End by Steph Bowe
I'm sensing a theme of criminality in YA at the moment. Books like 'Life After Theft', 'Also Known As' and 'Nobody But Us' are all about teen crims. Steph Bowe's is about a girl called Nina whose family robs banks, but she becomes sick of always being on the lam and wants things to change. Criminal teenagers may be a hot topic for YA books in 2013, but Bowe's is by far my favourite cover so far - it kinda reminds me of this scene in 'Skins' season 5.
Etiquette & Espionage Finishing School #1 by Gail Carriger
Gail Carriger writing steampunk YA – need I say more?
Paper Chains by Nicola Moriarty
How can I go past a novel written by one of the famous Moriarty sisters? They’re a literary legacy in Australian YA! ‘Paper Chains’ is about a new friendship between two girls, India and Hannah, and a “love letter that’s making its journey across Europe in the most unconventional way.” I am delightfully curious…
Mind Games Mind Games #1 by Kiersten White
I really enjoyed the first book in White’s debut series, ‘Paranormalcy’ – but then things started to drop off for me with second book ‘Supernaturally’. Regardless, I’m willing to give this new series a chance.
The Madness Underneath Shades of London #2 by Maureen Johnson
I loved Johnson’s first book in this series, ‘TheName of the Star’, it was spookily brilliant, and I’m ready to be scared and spine-tingled all over again.
Infinite Sky by C.J. Flood
Confession: I love the TV show ‘Big Fat GypsyWeddings’ – I’m always telling people it’s not trashy, it’s more anthropological and offers real insight into this fascinating culture. So when I read that ‘Infinite Sky’ is about a girl whose family is falling apart, when a Gypsy caravan park sets up in their back paddock, I just knew I had to read this one. And the cover is gorgeous.
Also Known As by Robin Benway
Fair warning – I hate this cover. I’m not a huge fan of those digital covers where, instead of real models, there are Sims-people. And this has a touch of ‘self-publish’ to it (not that there’s anything wrong with that!). Cover issues aside, Benway had me at ‘gifted teenage safecracker’ and because ‘Audrey, Wait!’ was stupendous
Winterblaze Darkest London #3 by Kristen Callihan
I loved the ‘Darkest London’ series this year (in fact, the first two books are making my 2012 favourites list!). Callihan left fans with a doozy of a cliff-hanger in ‘Moonglow’, concerning Poppy Lane and her husband discovering her secret. I can’t wait to pick up where this fantastical story left off.
Frost Burned Mercy Thompson #7 by Patricia Briggs
We haven’t had a ‘Mercy Thompson’ book since 2011. This will be a book in which Mercy and Adam are well and truly husband and wife (after their wonderful wedding in ‘River Marked’). The Dan Dos Santos cover art is another drool-worthy winner.
So, am I excited about this book in what is arguably my favourite paranormal series, ever? *Ahem*. SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE.
Damn tootin’ I am.
Being Henry David by Cal Armistead
I’m feeling a big poetry theme coming out of YA at the moment (see below) – not prose books, but novels about poets and poetry. This time Henry David Thoreau – I am intrigued. Again.
Dr. Bird's Advice for Sad Poets by Evan Roskos
That title = *drool*
Going Vintage by Lindsey Leavitt
When Mallory discovers that her boyfriend, Jeremy, is cheating on her with an online girlfriend, she swears off boys. She also swears off modern technology. Inspired by a list of goals her grandmother made in 1962, Mallory decides to “go vintage” and return to a simpler time (when boyfriends couldn’t cheat on you online). The cover sort of confused me, even more so when I read the blurb – where does hairdressing come into it? A book about vintage could have such a retro-chic cover, and this one kinda fails for me. And, to some extent, I’m torn about the blurb. The boyfriend-virtually-cheating storyline sounds like it could lack substance after a few chapters, but what is more interesting to me is Mallory unearthing a list of goals from her grandmother, written in 1962. That sounds like it could be quite a sweet connection across time story – and that’s why I’ll be reading.
The Killing Woods by Lucy Christopher
This one’s not up on GoodReads, but from the author of ‘Stolen’ you’ll know it will be good (especially with that title!)
What’s A Witch to do? by Jennifer Harlow
I’m lucky enough to have already ready this, thanks to NetGalley . . . and let me just say, it’s goooooood. I love me a cozy mystery, and Harlow’s new series feels reminiscent of Charlaine Harris’s paranormal cozy mystery series’ ‘Southern Vampire’ and ‘Harper Connelly’. It’s that good. The first book centres on high priestess witch, Mona McGregor, who has custody of her two nieces after her little sister split, no love life to speak of, a bleeding werewolf called Adam Blue knocking at her door and a witch in her coven has hired someone to assassinate her. Look out for this, because after ready the first book I've already pledged myself to the series.
Girl Defective by Simmone Howell
OMGOMGOMGOMG! I vowed to read absolutely everything Simmone Howell writes after the incredible-wonderful-painstakingly-brilliant 2008 novel ‘Everything Beautiful’. I love that her characters are brave and damaged, and that she writes gritty/dark urban teen adventures, always set on an interesting Australian stage. This time it’s St. Kilda – and the blurb promises ‘teenage messes, rock star spawn, violent fangirls, creepy old guys and accidents waiting to happen.’ BRING. IT. ON!
The Murmurings by Carly Anne West
That cover. WOAH! That tagline: ‘A teen girl starts hearing the same voices that drove her sister to commit suicide.’ DOUBLE-WOAH!
Lover At Last Black Dagger Brotherhood #11 by J.R. Ward
One word: Qhuay.
Taken Taken #1 by Erin Bowman
A book in which all boys vanish on their eighteenth birthday – and our protagonist is a young man fast approaching his 18th year? Yes, yes, yes. The stakes are high and the stage is set for an epic romance, tangled back-story and thoughtful metaphor. Bring it.
Life After Theft by Aprilynne Pike
I haven’t read anything by Aprilynne Pike, but I understand she’s more of a paranormal YA writer – interested to see how she goes in this one (which is still paranormal, with a ghostly twist, but still).
Sweet Damage by Rebecca James
I was such a huge fan of James’s debut novel ‘Beautiful Malice’ so she became another author I swore to ready absolutely everything of. I’ve waited patiently for her second book, and I’ve no doubt this one will grip me like her 2010 debut. Just the first-line of the blurb has a promising chill to it: ‘I still dream about Anna London's house.’
The Mimosa Tree by Antonella Preto
Set in 1987 (the year I was born!) this is about a girl called Mira who is starting University (I feel a New Adult coming on…) but she finds it difficult to move on and grow up when she’s being smothered by her “crazy Italian family”. I’m hooked. I’m there. Sign me up!
Game. Set. Match. Outerbanks Tennis Academy #1 by Jennifer Iacopelli
Marat Safin. Andy Roddick. James Blake. Fernando Verdasco. Gael Monfils . . . Google these tennis-playing love-boats and get excited for upcoming sport YA series ‘Outerbanks Tennis Academy’ by Jennifer Iacopelli. I actually used to play tennis (from ages 7 through to 17) and I can attest to the fact that tennis is a sport which attracts good lookin’ fellas (with *great* legs). Not to mention it’s a sport rife with relationship innuendo (Remember, love means nothing in tennis).
Winger by Andrew Smith
I hate that I haven't read any of Andrew Smith's books, because I've heard great things about all of them. He's the author of 'In the Path of Falling Objects' and 'Stick', two books that have been languishing in my TBR pile. Then Adele (of PersnicketySnark fame) showed me the cover of his latest book ... and I declared 'Winger' to be my favourite cover of 2013 so far. Then Adele told me it was a part-graphic YA novel (and I've been on a bit of a graphic novel kick lately) and I became doubly-excited for this book.
Transparent by Natalie Whipple
About an invisible girl – say no more, I’m already on the bandwagon.
Fall of Night The Morganville Vampires #14 by Rachel Caine
HUGE cliffhanger in ‘Bitter Blood’… I need book #14, like, yesterday.
Dead Ever After Sookie Stackhouse #13 by Charlaine Harris
After a disappointing last few books I won’t hold my breath for this finale. But I’m still interested to know what happens to our girl Sookie (and that big, bad Viking of hers).
Haze The Rephaim Book 2 by Paula Weston
Oh, how I loved ‘Shadows’, let me count the ways: twisted memory-loss plot, Rafa, kick-ass angels, high-stakes romance, Rafa, Rafa and, oh yeah – have I mentioned RAFA?! Paula Weston left readers dangling over a cliff-hanger ending in ‘Shadows’, now I’m ready for the drop!
A Witch's Handbook of Kisses and Curses by Molly Harper
I love Molly Harper.
That is all.
Loki's Wolves Blackwell Pages #1 by K.L. Armstrong, M.A. Marr
Kelley Armstrong and Melissa Marr writing a series based on Norse myths? Such a no-brainer.
The Lucy Variations by Sara Zarr
A book about a young girl who had a promising future as a concert-pianist, until a death and a betrayal led her to walk away. I love the title of this, for starters. But more than anything this reminds me, in a very small way, of Ephram Brown’s first season storyline on TV series ‘Everwood’ and that’s the reason I’m hooked.
Spirit Elemental #3 by Brigid Kemmerer
I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again: Mix a family of hot, orphaned brothers with an old town mystery and kooky superpowers . . . and, voilà – addictive reading!
The Originals by Cat Patrick
I’m still in awe of Cat Patrick’s debut ‘Forgotten’ and while this cover strongly reminds me of Em Bailey’s ‘Shift’ the storyline sounds wholly original.
Wild Awake by Hilary T. Smith
Big thank you to kate.o.d. for pointing me in the direction of Smith's debut which promises: 'love, loss, chaos, and murder woven into a summer of music, madness, piercing heartbreak, and intoxicating joy.' Oh hells yes!
When You Were Here by Daisy Whitney
I’m ashamed to say I’m one of the few people who has not read Whitney’s ‘The Mockingbirds’ (though I hear it’s spectacular). So I’m making up for that lack, by jumping onto her brand new young adult book early.
Burning by Elana K. Arnold
Another book about Gypsies! This time about a tarot-card-reading girl at the Burning Man Festival, who meets a boy and reads his fortune.
Parched by Melanie Crowder
I’m really loving middle-grade books at the moment, and this one sounds spectacular. I love this line in the blurb: ‘a boy with the water song inside him.’
The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman
Another cover that sucked me in, but it’s the blurb that will get me to read: ‘a fable that reshapes modern fantasy: moving, terrifying and elegiac - as pure as a dream, as delicate as a butterfly's wing, as dangerous as a knife in the dark…’
Ink The Paper Gods #1 by Amanda Sun
Love this cover art – LOVE! I also love that this is a YA novel set in Japan. But I would not have pegged this for a fantasy (storyline around the ancient gods of Japan). I was hoping this was going to be a contemporary YA, but I will remain open-minded.
Gameboard of the Gods Age of X #1 by Richelle Mead
I’m a huge Richelle Mead fan – but if I had to be nit-picky about it, I’d probably say I love her adult series (‘Dark Swan’ and ‘Georgina Kincaid’) more so than her more successful young adult ‘Vampire Academy’ series. That’s why I’m thrilled to discover Mead has a new, adult, series coming!
All Our Pretty Songs by Sarah McCarry
Now, this is intriguing... another recommendation from kate.o.d. (thank you!) but there isn't a blurb associated with this book yet (well, not one that I can find). However, the cover endorsement from Elizabeth Hand promises that McCarry's debut will appeal to fans of Neil Gaiman and Francesca Lia Block. All together now: Oooooohhhhhhhh.
Omens Cainsville #1 by Kelley Armstrong
I was a bit sad when Armstrong’s epic ‘Women of the Otherworld’ series came to a close this year, with ‘13’ But Armstrong has more than made up for the end of one series by creating two new ones (and revisiting her old ‘Nadia Stafford’). I’m always going to read whatever Armstrong writes, but I love that ‘Omens’ is going back to her old adult paranormal roots.
Canary by Rachele Alpine
About a girl whose father lands a job at a school with one of the best basketball teams in the state, which puts her in an impossible situation when she’s assaulted at a party by someone on the team. This sounds like it will be a tear-jerker, which will also challenge and provoke readers.
These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner
Fun fact: Amie Kaufman is Australian! Another fun fact: Kaufman and Spooner’s next two books in this untitled trilogy are scheduled for 2014 and 2015. Even funner fact: I’ll be reading this for all the above reasons, but also because I love the protagonist’s name: Lilac LaRoux.
The Opposite of Hallelujah by Anna Jarzab
Love the story – about a girl whose sister returns home after being gone for eight years. However, the title and cover art are a let-down after Gabrielle William’s ‘The Reluctant Hallelujah’ whose Hallelujah kicks ‘The Opposite of Hallelujah’ ass. Just sayin’.
Premeditated by Josin L. McQuein
OOOOOHHHHHHH. This sounds good. About a girl who plans to seek retribution from the boy who caused her cousin’s suicide – which means she’ll need to go undercover at his prep school. This sounds like a Veronica Mars meets Double Jeopardy thriller.