There was a time in my life where I avoided YA like the plague. I was too old for that now. I needed to read books with older protagonists because I couldn’t connect with the younger protag anymore.
I was an ass.
In the past few years the variety and quantity of YA books has soared through the roof. And now I’m devouring them like dark chocolate peanut M&Ms (because I love those, too). I can’t tell you which book it was that pulled me back into the YA genre, but it might be by one of these authors.
I stumbled upon Taylor while perusing a stack of books in a game shop. Hubs was taking his sweet time going through each game and felt bad so he offered to buy me a book. I picked up the paperback copy of Daughter of Smoke and Bone like iron drawn to a magnet.
It didn’t take long for me to fall headfirst into her bizarre world of angels and chimera and humans. I fell in love with blue haired Karou and her spunky best friend Zuzanna. The trilogy takes place all over the human world and between another world as well, taking me on a fantastical trip to places I could only dream of.
A word that was probably coined by Bardugo herself is more than fitting for the world that she’s created. It’s a fantasy Russia, surrounded by witch hunter filled Scandinavian-like country and evil scientist filled Asian-like country. In her first trilogy she weaves the story of Alina Starkov, reluctant hero and accidental Saint of Shadow and Bone, Siege and Storm, as well as Rise and Ruin.
I read the first book a year or more ago and, as much as I loved it, didn’t have the funds for the follow up books so I promptly forgot about it. Then, I stumbled across the sequel in the discount bargain. I shared an outcry at it being discount, but quickly snatched it up. More recently, hubs purchased Six of Crows for me. Its as beautiful on the outside as it is on the inside.
It wasn’t her werewolf romance series that caught me, although that is more my style. No, for Stiefvater it was an interview I watched on Youtube. Bardugo and Taylor were there as well, but listening to Stiefvater talk made me want to read what she was putting out.
The Raven Boys immediately drew me in. Its a story of outcasts, dead kings, and baby ravens. The next book, Dream Thieves, is about anger, drag racing, and a hit man. Stiefvater writes like I wish I could.
My love for Holly Black began YEARS ago. It started with Valiant, an urban rewrite of Beauty and the Beast that fucking hooked me. Valiant will always be one of my favorite books, but The Darkest Part of the Forest is now a close second.
It follows Hazel, a human girl living in a town surrounded by Fae. In a world that renders the townsfolk helpless, Hazel refuses to remain helpless. Reckless and wild, she is set on a path to become a hero when the sleeping horned boy in the glass casket suddenly comes up missing. But, Hazel isn’t so sure she is the hero that she thinks she is anymore.
Maybe I’m just a sucker for books with girls that have swords.
This woman right here was the beginning of everything for me. Trickster’s Choice was the very fist book of hers that I read, which meant a lot of back pedaling when I found more. Many of her books are set in the fantastic world of Tortall. But, it isn’t all fantasy. It’s political intrigue, stuggling with race issues, the aftermath of war, and any number of deep cutting themes.
Forever a favorite of mine, I constantly return to the Immortals series. Daine starts out as an orphaned thirteen year old struggling to figure out who she is and what to do with herself. There she runs into the fabulous mage, Numair. As the books progress, and Daine ages, the two struggle with their feelings for one another. Perhaps this is why I like older men.