Alas, September is upon us . . . and with it will come so many enticing new young adult reads!
Darkness, magic, and edge-of-your-seat twists abound in this list.
Check it out below (organized by release date)!
By Kate Dylan
Eighteen-year-old Sil Sarrah is determined to die a legend. But with only twelve months left before the supercomputer grafted to her brain kills her, Sil's time is quickly running out.
In the ten years she's been rescuing field agents for the Syntex corporation - by commandeering their minds from afar and leading them to safety - Sil hasn't lost a single life. And she's not about to start now.
But when a critical mission goes south, Sil is forced to flee the very company she once called home.
Desperate to prove she's no traitor, Sil infiltrates the Analog Army, an activist faction working to bring Syntex down. Her plan: to win back her employer's trust by destroying the group from within. Instead, she and the Army's reckless leader, Ryder, uncover a horrifying truth that threatens to undo all the good she's ever done.
With her tech rapidly degrading and her new ally keeping dangerous secrets of his own, Sil must find a way to stop Syntex in order to save her friends, her reputation - and maybe even herself.
By Tanvi Berwah
Sixteen-year-old Koral and her older brother Emrik risk their lives each day to capture the monstrous maristags that live in the black seas around their island. They have to, or else their family will starve.
In an oceanic world swarming with vicious beasts, the Landers—the ruling elite, have indentured Koral's family to provide the maristags for the Glory Race, a deadly chariot tournament reserved for the upper class. The winning contender receives gold and glory.
The others—if they're lucky—survive.
When the last maristag of the year escapes and Koral has no new maristag to sell, her family's financial situation takes a turn for the worse and they can't afford medicine for her chronically ill little sister. Koral's only choice is to do what no one in the world has ever dared: cheat her way into the Glory Race.
But every step of the way is unpredictable as Koral races against competitors—including her ex-boyfriend—who have trained for this their whole lives and who have no intention of letting a low-caste girl steal their glory. As a rebellion rises and rogues attack Koral to try and force her to drop out, she must choose—her life or her sister's—before the whole island burns.
By Aiden Thomas “Only the most powerful and honorable semidioses get chosen. I’m just a Jade. I’m not a real hero.” As each new decade begins, the Sun’s power must be replenished so that Sol can keep traveling along the sky and keep the chaotic Obsidian gods at bay. Sol selects ten of the most worthy semidioses to compete in the Sunbearer Trials. The winner carries light and life to all the temples of Reino del Sol, but the loser has the greatest honor of all—they will be sacrificed to Sol, their body melted down to refuel the Sun Stones, protecting the world for another ten years. Teo, a seventeen-year-old Jade semidiós and the trans son of the goddess of birds, isn't worried about the Trials . . . at least, not for himself. His best friend, Niya is a Gold semidiós and a shoo-in for the Trials, and while he trusts her abilities, the odds of becoming the sacrifice is one-in-ten. But then, for the first time in over a century, the impossible happens. Sol chooses not one, but two Jade competitors. Teo, and Xio, the thirteen-year-old child of the god of bad luck. Now they must compete in five trials against Gold opponents who are more powerful and better trained. Worst of all, Teo’s annoyingly handsome ex-best friend and famous semidiós Hero, Aurelio is favored to win. Teo is determined to get himself and his friends through the trials unscathed—for fame, glory, and their own survival.
By Chloe C. Peñaranda In a war of hearts, fates will be sealed. But in a battle of thrones, no bond may be truly unbreakable.
To reclaim her throne, Tauria leaves behind her safety to travel across courts. A marriage alliance with the prickly Prince of Olmstone could grant her the power to fight for her kingdom . . . or inspire a monarch’s deadly vengeance that threatens all she holds dear.
No amount of distance can make Nik forget his desires, but caught in a torturous conflict of heart against duty, he’s at risk of losing both. Now is the time to choose. Claim the bond and accept the prophesy that kept him from her all this time . . . or set his aching heart—and hers—free once and for all.
But peace is never promised when the shadow of war looms, and Tauria’s harrowing discoveries foretell a damning fate of evil to all those who bear a crown. To love may be to condemn, but to deny would be a far deadlier curse at the hands of the sinister forces intent on taking them down.
By A. G. Howard Phoenix “Nix” Loring knows her family is under a Halloween curse. When she was three, her parents tragically died on October 31st. Eleven years later, her twin sister Lark suffered a similar fate. Ever since, Nix has battled survivor guilt. She can't even find comfort in Clarey, Lark's boyfriend and the one person who understands her pain, because Nix's hidden feelings for him go far beyond friendship. All that remains are her sketches, where she finds solace among the goblins and faeries in her imaginary world of Mystiquel. When her depression starts affecting her ability to see color, Nix all but gives up on her art, until her uncle goes missing on Halloween day. Hot on his trail, Nix and Clarey step through a portal, becoming trapped inside a decaying version of their town filled with Nix's own sketches come to life. As Nix and Clarey search for her uncle within the sinister and dangerous world of Mystiquel, Nix discovers there's more to her family curse and otherworldly artwork than she ever imagined-and unless she can solve the Goblin King's maze before the clock strikes midnight, her life won't be the only one the curse claims next.
By Stephanie Garber Not every love is meant to be. After Jacks, the Prince of Hearts, betrays her, Evangeline Fox swears she'll never trust him again. Now that she’s discovered her own magic, Evangeline believes she can use it to restore the chance at happily ever after that Jacks stole away. But when a new terrifying curse is revealed, Evangeline finds herself entering into a tenuous partnership with the Prince of Hearts again. Only this time, the rules have changed. Jacks isn’t the only force Evangeline needs to be wary of. In fact, he might be the only one she can trust, despite her desire to despise him. Instead of a love spell wreaking havoc on Evangeline’s life, a murderous spell has been cast. To break it, Evangeline and Jacks will have to do battle with old friends, new foes, and a magic that plays with heads and hearts. Evangeline has always trusted her heart, but this time she’s not sure she can. . . .
By Kristin L Hamblin
What happens if you fall in love in a world where love is forbidden?
Yesterday, Laida was Ardenis’s friend. Today, she’s the love of his life. And he can’t tell her.
Ardenis’s human emotions weren’t meant to awaken prematurely. Watchers are supposed to resist the charm of mortals’ magical kingdoms and court intrigue. The punishment is exile—denying him the beauty of a mortal life. He can’t get caught, and he can’t risk awakening Laida’s emotions. While she remains oblivious, he is in torment, struggling to find his new place in the world alone.
But love cannot exist without hate. Yesterday, the council could do no wrong. Today, Ardenis sees corruption among them—something he never would have recognized before. Someone is plotting to prevent the first-ever fae from being born.
If Ardenis can’t uncover the source of the corruption while hiding his human emotions, the realm’s ability to provide souls to the mortal world will be destroyed. Everyone, including Laida, is at risk.
By Brigid Kemmerer What will they sacrifice to save their kingdom? Their honor? Their love? Their lives? Tessa Cade has gone from masked outlaw to palace advisor, but even with her newfound power, she can't stop the sickness still raging. And the kingdom's supply of Moonflower elixir dwindles all the while. Prince Corrick is trying to find a new way to lead, but it isn't easy to repair the rift between the royals and the people—or the one growing between himself and Tessa. When an emissary from a neighboring kingdom arrives with an intriguing offer, Tessa and Corrick set out on an uncertain journey to find a new source of the lifesaving elixir. But with tensions brewing on deck and the sea swirling below, Tessa and Corrick must decide who they can trust—including each other. But they're shocked to discover that a craven betrayal may be much closer than they think . . .
By Elisa A. Bonnin The city of Leithon is under Imperial occupation and Arian Athensor has made it her playground. In stealing magical artifacts for the Resistance, bounding over rooftops to evade Imperial soldiers, and establishing herself as the darling thief of the underground, Arian lives a life wrapped in danger and trained towards survival. She’ll steal anything for the right price, and if she runs fast enough, she can almost escape the fact that her mother is dead, her father is missing, and her brother, Liam, is tamping down a wealth of power in a city that has outlawed magic. But then the mysterious Cavar comes to town with a job for the twins: to steal an artifact capable of ripping the souls from the living—the same artifact that used to hang around the neck of Arian’s mother. Suddenly, her past is no longer buried under adrenaline but intimately tied to the mission at hand, and Arian must face her guilt and pain head-on in order to pull off the heist. As Arian and Cavar infiltrate the strongest fortress in Leithon and Liam joins the Resistance as their resident mage, the twins find themselves embroiled in court politics and family secrets, and the mission becomes more than just another artifact theft. The target is now the Imperial rule, and Arian will go to any length necessary to steal her city back.
By Justina Ireland
It is 1937, and Laura Ann Langston lives in an America divided—between those who work the mystical arts and those who do not. Ever since the Great Rust, a catastrophic event that blighted the arcane force called the Dynamism and threw America into disarray, the country has been rebuilding for a better future. And everyone knows the future is industry and technology—otherwise known as Mechomancy—not the traditional mystical arts.
Laura disagrees. A talented young queer mage from Pennsylvania, Laura hopped a portal to New York City on her seventeenth birthday with hopes of earning her mage’s license and becoming something more than a rootworker.
But four months later, she’s got little to show for it other than an empty pocket and broken dreams. With nowhere else to turn, Laura applies for a job with the Bureau of the Arcane’s Conservation Corps, a branch of the US government dedicated to repairing the Dynamism so that Mechomancy can thrive. There she meets the Skylark, a powerful mage with a mysterious past, who reluctantly takes Laura on as an apprentice.
As they’re sent off on their first mission together into the heart of the country’s oldest and most mysterious Blight, they discover the work of mages not encountered since the darkest period in America’s past, when Black mages were killed for their power—work that could threaten Laura’s and the Skylark’s lives, and everything they’ve worked for.
By Kerri Maniscalco Two curses. One prophecy. A reckoning all have feared. And a love more powerful than fate. All hail the king and queen of Hell. Emilia is reeling from a shocking discovery about her sister, Vittoria. But before she faces the demons of her past, Emilia yearns to claim her king, the seductive Prince of Wrath, in the flesh. She doesn’t just desire his body; she wants his heart and soul—but that’s something the enigmatic demon can’t promise her. When a high-ranking member of House Greed is assassinated, damning evidence somehow points to Vittoria as the murderer. Now, Emilia will do anything to get to the bottom of these accusations against the sister she thought she knew. Together, Emilia and Wrath play a sin-fueled game of deception to solve the murder and stop the unrest that’s brewing between witches, demons, shape-shifters, and the most treacherous foes of all: the Feared. Emilia was warned that when it came to the Wicked, nothing was as it seemed. But have the true villains been much closer all along? *Suggested for ages 16 and up.
By Lyndall Clipstone
At the lake's edge, I made my promise. In the forest, I will fall. The curse that haunted Lakesedge Estate has been broken, but at great cost. Violeta Graceling has sacrificed herself to end the Corruption. To escape death, Leta makes a desperate bargain with the Lord Under, one that sees her living at his side in the land of the dead. And though he claims to have given her all he promised, Leta knows this world of souls and mists hides many secrets. When she discovers she is still bound to Rowan, Leta goes to drastic lengths to reforge their connection. But her search for answers, and a path back home, will see her drawn into even more dangerous bargains, and struggling to resist the allure of a new, dark, power in Forestfall by Lyndall Clipstone.
By Natasha Bowen
To save those closest to her, Simi traded away everything: her freedom, her family, and the boy she loves. Now she is sworn to serve a new god, watching over the Land of the Dead at the bottom of the ocean.
But when signs of demons begin to appear, it’s clear there are deeper consequences of Simi’s trade. These demons spell the world’s ruin . . . and because of Simi, they now have a way into the human realm.
With the fate of the world at stake, Simi must break her promise and team up with a scheming trickster of a god. And if they succeed, perhaps Simi can also unbreak her heart along the way, and find herself again.
By Aislinn Brophy
Magically brilliant, academically perfect, chronically overcommitted—
Shay Johnson has all the makings of a successful witch. As a junior at T.K. Anderson Magical Magnet School, she’s determined to win the Brockton Scholarship—her ticket into the university of her dreams. Her competition? Ana freaking Álvarez. The key to victory? Impressing Mr. B, drama teacher and head of the scholarship committee.
When Mr. B asks Shay to star in this year’s aggressively inclusive musical, she warily agrees, even though she’ll have to put up with Ana playing the other lead. But in rehearsals, Shay realizes Ana is . . . not the despicable witch she’d thought. Perhaps she could be a friend—or more. And Shay could use someone in her corner once she becomes the target of Mr. B’s unwanted attention. When Shay learns she’s not the first witch to experience his inappropriate behavior, she must decide if she’ll come forward. But how can she speak out when her future's on the line?
By Erin Jade Lange
Charlie and her brother, Reg, have been vampires for . . . a very long time. For a century, they enjoyed the glitz and glamour of life as members of the wealthiest vampire clan. But now, after one careless mistake, they’ve been expelled from the vampire community and dumped in the middle of Nowhere, Iowa to live as mortals.
Suddenly Charlie has to deal with zits, tears, and—worst of all—high school. But things start to change when she and Reg find a group of friends, including the deliciously good-looking Dexter. And though Charlie would give anything to be vampire again, she begins to appreciate some of the new experiences that humanity brings too.
But nothing could make them forget the life they’ve left behind. When they’re offered a second shot at immortality, Charlie is desperate to seize it. It’ll just mean a total betrayal of all her new friends, who will have their minds wiped of their memories of her. She can handle that if it means she can live forever . . . right?
By Lindie Dagenhart
There's little Baen Balcrome fears more than being powerless. As the youngest son of five, Baen has always known he has no shot at the trickle-down blood magic that runs in his family. Even before the magic went dormant, rendering them all but useless to the organization that owns their contract. When their allocated Healer turns up with an unexpected offer to teach him how to unlock those hidden abilities, it's surely too good to be true. He knows he can't trust her. She might be a little old lady, but she's mean and vindictive, and has always blamed him for his family's downfall. Baen already has enough on his plate: ghosts, a brother who wants him dead, AP Calculus, and Eli, the annoying kid next door who won't stop following him around. Yet that promise of power is so alluring, he might just have to say yes.
This article was written by Allison Rose.
Allison Rose writes YA fantasy featuring magic and otherworldly beings. Her current series feature a truly unique world of Faerie. Click the covers below to check them out.