We are always clamoring for more inclusive reads here at SYFY FANGRRLS, which is why I appreciate young adult literature so much. It has its own merits — exciting stories, incredible worldbuilding — but it's also often just more diverse than any adult counterparts. There is still a long way to go on this front in publishing in general, but I'm often reminded when I'm putting together these monthly columns how far we've come, and it certainly is worth it to take the time to appreciate that.
This month, I've got quite a few YA novels I'm excited about. From robotic dragons to fairy tales set at an elite boarding school, check out these SFF recommendations for the month of February.
All the Stars and Teeth - Adalyn Grace (February 4)
Amora might have spent her entire life in training as the heir to the throne, but that doesn't mean her place is assured. And indeed, when her testing goes awry, she's forced to abandon her position and all she knows. But she's determined to reclaim what she sees as rightfully hers, and she teams up with a pirate, Bastian, to make sure that she gets her position back. (Also, how many people want to bet that this pirate is smoldering and mysterious and utterly fantastic?)
Deathless Divide - Justina Ireland (February 4)
Dread Nation, a zombie novel set during the American Civil War, was one of the most talked-about books of 2018, so I know there are so many people clamoring for the sequel, which is out this month. Deathless Divide picks up where the former book left off, centering on Jane McKeene, who has been trained since birth to kill the zombies plaguing the nation.
Shadow of the Batgirl - Sarah Kuhn & Nicole Goux (February 4)
This monthly list usually focuses on prose novels, but I definitely want to mention the new Batgirl YA graphic novel out from DC Comics this month. It's written by Sarah Kuhn, who we love from her Heroine Complex superhero series, with art by Nicole Goux. This comic focuses on Cassandra Cain, who's an assassin by trade. She's destined to wear the mantle of Batgirl — if only she can overcome the voices in her own head telling her she isn't good enough.
Of Curses and Kisses - Sandhya Menon (February 18)
We love fairy tale retellings here at SYFY FANGRRLS, and it's extra exciting that superstar YA author Sandhya Menon (author of When Dimple Met Rishi) is dipping her toes into them with a new series! The first is called Of Curses and Kisses, and it takes place at a boarding school and is a retelling of Beauty and the Beast, featuring a princess named Jaya Rao. I can't wait to read this one; it sounds absolutely adorable.
Folktales for Fearless Girls - Myriam Sayalero and Dani Torrent (February 25)
I absolutely love those illustrated collections of fairy tales, books about fearless women, and more that have been coming out over the past couple of years, which is why I'm so intrigued by Folktales for Fearless Girls. The illustrations in this book look stunning, and I can't wait to read about women and girls who save the day, rather than waiting to be rescued by princes and kings.
Rebelwing - Andrea Tang (February 25)
I've been hearing about Rebelwing for months now, so I’m excited the release date is finally approaching! This novel is about a prep-school-attending smuggler who is about to be caught by the police — but she manages to escape on some sort of robotic dragon. Prudence has no idea what is going on, but it turns out she's now connected somehow to this creature, and the government is more interested than ever in why exactly that might be and what she can do with it.
The Sound of Stars - Alechia Dow (February 25)
This debut novel is set in a future in which music, books, and other forms of art have been declared illegal. Every day, Ellie Baker flouts the law by running an underground library, intent on giving people a reason to live and to hope. When a book goes missing, Ellie becomes terrified it will be traced back to her — but when it is, the consequences aren't what she expects and result in an epic road trip that might just save the world.