Yes, it is technically still 2017, but it’s not too early to think about what awesome books are coming our way in 2018. I follow the YA lit site Epic Reads on social media, and they definitely amp up the hype up for forthcoming books through clever and fun cover reveals. Once you get a jaw-dropping cover design in your mind, it is hard to forget it. And now, bloggers, librarians, writers, and other bookish folk get their hands on a coveted review copy early, which has led to both adding to the anticipation of a novel and sometimes calling out big issues months ahead of time. Anyone who has ever been lucky enough to attend a book, library, or author convention has known the sorrow and joy of trying to haul tons of advanced reading copies home. So really, maybe this post of my most anticipated YA novels of 2018 is late to the party. Without further ado, here are some of the most anticipated winter 2018 YA novels to put on your list.
Marie Lu writing Batman? Shut up and take my money. I’ll read anything by the science fiction and dystopian writer Marie Lu, author of the Legend and Young Elites series and most recently, Warcross. I am a huge comics fan, especially the TV and film adaptations. But like many superhero fans, I have often wanted to read a novel about my favorite characters. No pictures. No film. No soundtrack. Just these incredibly complex and compelling heroes and heroines and words on a page. The DC Icons series, which opened with Leigh Bardugo’s Wonder Woman: Warbringer, pairs amazing YA authors with its iconic superheroes. Batman is the ultimate tortured soul. This is sure to be one of the most anticipated YA novels of 2018. I cannot wait to see how Marie Lu takes us inside his mind and heart as he battles strange and deadly forces in Gotham City.
I have really enjoyed how YA authors have embraced this anthology. From horror fiction to summer love, YA anthologies are the next great thing. Plus, the stories are short and digestible, perfect in between bigger books or to help you get out of a slump. January will bring us Meet Cute: Some People Are Destined to Meet and will definitely help you get in the mood for Valentine’s Day. A “meet cute” is a spontaneous, sometimes awkward, and definitely memorable meeting between two people who find romance. It’s a classic hallmark of romantic comedies. This anthology features meet cutes of many kinds. A bouquet of all-star YA authors have contributed a story: Julie Murphy, Nicola Yoon, Emory Lord, and Nina LaCour, to name but a few. If you love to swoon, gush, and feel the enchantment of romance, you will definitely want to pick this collection up.
Thank goodness for prolific writers! Amie Kaufman already has Obsidio, the third book of the Illuminae Files, coming out in March, but she obviously cannot get enough of writing space opera science fiction. Unearthed is another team effort by Kaufman and Meagan Spooner, who together wrote the Starbound series. In Unearthed, an ancient alien race, the Undying, make contact with Earth’s humans, who are at risk of extinction on a failing planet with limited resources. The Undying promise healing and hope. Sounds great, right? When scholar Jules Addison and scavenger Amelia “Mia” Radcliffe get thrown together back on the Undying’s home planet of Gaia, they realize the Undying might not want to save humans, after all—quite the opposite. Jules and Mia have to overcome their differences and strike a temporary truce to save life back on earth—and their own lives. A new space opera series with adventure, suspense, breathtaking worldbuilding, and a touch of romance… count me in! When it comes to most anticipated YA novels of winter 2018, this one is sure to be on the list.
I cannot wait until January 16, 2018, to get my hands on debut author Samira Ahmed’s novel, Love, Hate & Other Filters. This contemporary YA novel follows Maya Aziz, who is ready to get out of her close-knit community in Chicago and head off for New York City, where she will be attending an elite film school. While her parents want her to settle back home, ideally with an eligible and successful man, Maya longs to start over and begin a life of her own and maybe just pursue a romance with a boy she’s only known online. When a suicide bomber targets the American heartland, Maya and her family are thrown into the chaos of racism and anger because they share the terrorist’s last name. If you loved Angie Thomas’ The Hate U Give, you will find this just as gripping and thought-provoking a novel.
Oh, man. That cover is enough to make me insta-add this to my list, and the description is even better. In Dhonielle Clayton’s new series, Belles are blessed with powerful talents, particularly in the area of Beauty, which is a commodity in the opulent world of Orléans. Camellia Beauregard embraces the status and duties of Belles, but when her ambitions lead her to the top of society, all the way to Orléans’ royal palace, she is in over her head. For it’s there that Camellia realizes how her gifts put her in a privileged position, but also risk her life. This fierce new series from Clayton (Tiny Pretty Things) already sounds bingeworthy in the most anticipated YA novels of winter 2018 lineup!