First I’d like to say a massive thank you to Amanda for inviting me to visit today, hopefully as you’re reading this she is having a wonderful time in Florida (yes I am just a tiny bit jealous lol). Amanda asked me to write a post about some of the YA books I’m most looking forward to throughout the rest of 2011. Now anyone that reads my blog will probably already know that I love a good paranormal story so I’m afraid you won’t find any contemporary YA on my list. I’m sure there are a lot of good contemps coming out but they aren’t the kind of thing that usually catch my attention.
What I tend to look for is something with a paranormal slant to it, paranormal romance, fantasy, urban fantasy and occasionally a dystopian or something historical for a change. I love to escape from reality when I’m reading, to explore new worlds and forget about real life for a bit.
So here are the books I’m most looking forward to in the coming months:
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.
But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway—a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love—a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands.
True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus per¬formers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead.
Since I was a child I’ve loved the circus - the sights, sounds and smells all bring back wonderful memories of exciting family outings. I’ve not really read anything set in a circus though so I’m intrigued by this one. Add in magic and a hint of romance and I’m sold!
The Night Circus is being published by Harvill Secker on the 15th of September.
Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor
There once was a young artist called Karou who drew tales of monsters and demons that delighted and enthralled those around her.
But she has a secret, a secret that ties her to a dusty subterranean chamber, where her beloved guardian brokers dark deals in a place that is not here. A place that is Elsewhere.
Living with one foot in each world, Karou has never really known which one is her true home.
Now the doors to Elsewhere closing . . .
The buzz has been building for Daughter of Smoke and Bone for months now and I don’t think I’ve read a negative review yet. We’ve seen a lot of angels and demons this year but I have a feeling that this one will be completely different and I can’t wait to get started.
Daughter of Smoke and Bone is being published by Hodder & Stoughton on the 29th of September.
Angel Fire by L.A. Weatherly
This is the thrilling second chapter in the electrifying "Angel Trilogy". Angels will never be seen in the same way again. Gorgeous, charismatic Alex has the courage and skill of a trained Angel Killer. Unique, dazzling Willow has the beauty and power that comes with being half-angel. As the power of the malevolent Church of Angels grows, now it's up to Alex and Willow to train a new team of Angel Killers. Willow soon finds her half-angel identity met with hostility by some of the other AKs, while privately, she must wrestle with the knowledge that her father, Raziel, is a depraved, evil angel. However, while life in the AK training camp is tough, at least Alex and Willow are together. But when Alex discovers that the death of his brother and fellow Angel-Killer, Jake, was linked to a secret CIA mission to defeat the angels, he is forced to leave the camp to complete his brother's work... without Willow. Alex promised Willow he would never leave her, but with the fate of the human race at stake, destiny has ruled that Alex and Willow must be parted once more...
Angel Fire is the second book in L.A. Weatherly’s Angel trilogy and the first book Angel was one of my favourite YA reads of 2010 so I’ve been desperate to get my hands on this one for a long time now. The angels in this series are like none you will have come across before, not your usual benign beings in this series they are deadly. The first book was full of action and I loved the romance between Willow and Alex, I’m very excited to see where the twists and turns will take us in this instalment.
Angel Fire is being published by Usborne on the 1st of October.
Midwinterblood by Marcus Sedgwick
Have you ever had the feeling that you've lived another life? Been somewhere that has felt totally familiar, even though you've never been there before, or felt that you know someone well, even though you are meeting them for the first time? It happens. In 2073 on the remote and secretive island of Blessed, where rumour has it that no one ages and no children are born, a visiting journalist, Eric Seven, and a young local woman known as Merle are ritually slain. Their deaths echo a moment ten centuries before, when, in the dark of the moon, a king was slain, tragically torn from his queen. Their souls search to be reunited, and as mother and son, artist and child, forbidden lovers, victims of a vampire they come close to finding what they've lost. In a novel comprising seven parts, each influenced by a moon - the flower moon, the harvest moon, the hunter's moon, the blood moon - this is the story of Eric and Merle whose souls have been searching for each other since their untimely parting. Beautifully imagined, intricately and cleverly structured, this is a heart-wrenching and breathtaking love story with the hallmark Sedgwick gothic touches of atmosphere, blood-spilling and sacrifice.
I was lucky enough to hear Marcus Sedgwick doing a reading from Midwinterblood at an event I attended and I think this is going to be a fantastic book. It’s a love story that spans centuries and I’m intrigued by the idea of soul mates who keep meeting again in different situations throughout the ages. The fact that the story starts in the future and then works backwards through time just makes it sound even more interesting!
Midwinterblood is being published by Orion on the 6th of October.
Darker Still by Leanna Reene Hieber
The Picture of Dorian Gray meets Pride and Prejudice, with a dash of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.
New York City, 1882. Seventeen-year-old Natalie Stewart's latest obsession is a painting of the handsome British Lord Denbury. Something in his striking blue eyes calls to her. As his incredibly life-like gaze seems to follow her, Natalie gets the uneasy feeling that details of the painting keep changing...
Jonathan Denbury's soul is trapped in the gilded painting by dark magic while his possessed body commits unspeakable crimes in the city slums. He must lure Natalie into the painting, for only together can they reverse the curse and free his damaged soul.
This is the first book in Leanna Renee Hieber’s new Magic Most Foul series and has been described as a dark and gothic tale. I love stories set in the Victorian era and this one has a paranormal twist so it’s definitely my kind of read!
Darker Still is being published by Sourcebooks in November.
So that’s the books I’m most looking forward to for the rest of the year. Are any of them on your wish list? Which books are you pining for that I’ve forgotten about? I’m always happy to add more to my wish list lol.
Thanks for this, Sarah! I know that a few of these are on my wishlist already, but I hadn't even heard of Darker Still and now want to read it!