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16 Of The Best YA Books Of 2015

From new novels and sequels to dystopians and coming-of-age books.

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1. The Invasion of the Tearling by Erika Johansen

Published: June 9, 2015

Amazon Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars

Series: The Queen of the Tearling #2

In this captivating and highly anticipated sequel, Invasion of the Tearling continues the journey of Kelsea and the dangerous future she is about to endure. By stopping the shipment of slaves to Mortmesne, she has crossed the Evil Queen, ensuring an inevitable war laced with brutality and dark magic. As the Mort army draws nearer, Kelsea finds herself aligned with a mysterious, possibly dangerous ally named Lily. The fate of Kelsea and the Tearling may rest with Lily and her story, but Kelsea may not have enough time to find out.

Buy your copy here.

2. An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

Published: April 28, 2015

Amazon Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Series: An Ember in the Ashes #1

This high-fantasy novel presents a dual point of view from both Laia and Elias — a slave and a solider within the Martial Empire. Laia is on an undercover mission to save her brother and bring down the empire, while Elias has lived here his entire life. But when Elias learns the dark secrets behind the Martial Empire's plans, he must decide if escaping with Laia or staying behind is ultimately the right choice. This fast-paced adventure will have you flipping pages well into the night and will leave you craving more.

Buy your copy here.

3. Winter by Marissa Meyer

Published: Nov. 10, 2015

Amazon Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars

Series: The Lunar Chronicles #4

Winter is the highly anticipated fourth and final book (well, sort of!) of the fairy tale–inspired dystopian series, The Lunar Chronicles. The story follows a cyborg mechanic named Cinder (like Cinderella) who is on the run from her evil aunt, Queen Levana, and intends to wage war in order to claim her rightful throne and bring peace to Earth and Luna. Along the way, she meets Scarlet (Little Red Riding Hood), Cress (Rapunzel), and in this book, Winter (Snow White), Queen Levana’s stepdaughter. Winter focuses on Winter’s life in imprisonment, her relationship with a palace guard, and the mission to take down Queen Levana, and, of course, brings all of the other characters from the previous books into play.

Buy your copy here.

4. The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh

Published: May 12, 2015

Amazon Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars

Series: The Wrath and the Dawn #1

This YA retelling of A Thousand and One Nights follows Shahrzad, a 16-year-old girl who volunteers to marry Khalid — a prince known to murder each and every one of his wives before morning. Her goal is to seek revenge on him by killing him to avenge the death of her best friend. To put off her own murder by the prince's hand, she tells him stories each night. But what she doesn't expect is to slowly, achingly fall in love with him. Ahdieh creates an unputdownable story brimming with romance and retribution.

Buy your copy here.

5. Dumplin' by Julie Murphy

Published: Sept. 15, 2015

Amazon Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars

Willowdean Dickson, a 17-year-old girl living in a small Texas town, doesn't define herself by her weight. She maintains a good level of confidence, but that suddenly changes when she begins crushing on Bo — a super-hot guy who works with her. To break out of her comfort zone and gain back her confidence, she decides to try out for her town's beauty pageant. But she doesn't expect to fall out of her friendship with her BFF, nor does she predict the pageant's true challenges. Dumplin' portrays a strong, earnest voice and brilliantly tackles issues of being comfortable in your own skin.

Buy your copy here.

6. Shadowshaper by Daniel José Older

Published: June 30, 2015

Amazon review: 4.6 out of 5 stars

This thrilling tale follows a girl named Sierra, a painter who lives in Brooklyn. She planned for an easygoing summer, but when paintings and murals in the city come to life, she discovers something sinister. She unravels the mystery of shadowshaping, a magic that infuses ancestral spirits into paintings, music, and stories. But someone is killing the shadowshapers, and the killer believes Sierra is hiding a secret. She must now dig into her family history and take down the killer in order to save herself and the shadowshapers.

Buy your copy here.

7. Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

Published: Sept. 29, 2015

Amazon Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars

Series: Six of Crows #1

The author who brought us The Grisha Trilogy, Bardugo is back with another series that shares the same world building as Shadow and Bone. The story follows a mysterious young man named Kaz Brekkar, who is recruited to pull off a deadly heist with five other recruits for a large sum of money.

Buy your copy here.

8. Mosquitoland by David Arnold

Published: March 3, 2015

Amazon Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Mim Malone lives with her father and stepmother in Mississippi. But after she learns her mother is sick, Mim hops on the soonest Greyhound to Ohio with a backpack full of cash. However, things don't go so smoothly on the journey, leaving her to meet some interesting people — some of who become friends — along the way. Mim is a flawed and broken character, but her strong-willed personality and loyal spirit make her memorable. Fans of Chbosky's Perks of Being a Wallflower are sure to enjoy this incredible debut.

Buy your copy here.

9. Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

Published: Feb. 10, 2015

Amazon Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars

Series: Red Queen #1

In a kingdom divided by the status of blood — red and silver — Mare Barrow believes poverty is inescapable for her and her "Red" family. But when it's discovered that Mare possesses a special power that once belonged only to the Silvers, she is forced into a new identity by the king and queen. It's then when Mare discovers a rebellion called the Red Guard, who are determined to bring down the Silvers, and she must ultimately decide where her loyalties lie. Readers will enjoy Mare's tough, headstrong character as well as the twists and turns within the pages.

Buy your copy here.

10. Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen

Published: May 5, 2015

Amazon Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars

When Sydney's "perfect" older brother lands in jail after a DUI, she gravitates toward a new friend, Layla, and her family — including her attractive brother. Sydney has always felt invisible at home, and Layla's family is everything Sydney's isn't, so she quickly finds comfort and acceptance in them. But when things become more hectic in Sydney's life, she'll have to decide if standing up for herself is the best choice. Saint Anything delivers the perfect amount of romance, friendship, and family dynamic within a brilliant contemporary novel.

Buy your copy here.

11. Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas

Published: Sept. 1, 2015

Amazon Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars

Series: Throne of Glass #4

In this epic fourth installment of Throne of Glass, Celaena Sardothien returns to the empire for vengeance, to rescue her once-glorious kingdom, and to confront the shadows of her past. She has embraced her identity as Aelin Galathynius, queen of Terrasen. But before she can reclaim her throne, she must fight for her friends, family, and people.

Buy your copy here.

12. Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

Published: April 7, 2015

Amazon Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars

Not only is it hard to come out as a teenager, but it's insanely difficult when someone is using your secret as blackmail. Martin knows about Blue, an anonymous boy Simon has been communicating with online, and if Simon doesn't help set up Martin with his friend Abby, he runs the risk of Martin coming out for him. This spectacular debut brings an honest, refreshing, and laugh-out-loud voice to the YA world and perfectly captures the inner turmoil of wanting your friends and family to accept you as you are.

Buy your copy here.

13. The Rose Society by Marie Lu

Published: Oct. 13, 2015

Amazon Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars

Series: The Young Elites, #2

Adelina Amouteru has suffered pain at the hands of her friends and family, leading her down a path of bitter revenge. Now known and feared as the White Wolf, she and her sister flee to find other Young Elites in the hopes of taking down the white-cloaked soldiers who almost killed her. But Adelina's powers have grown beyond her control, and she does not trust her newfound Elite friends. She wants to hold onto the good inside her, but finds it difficult since she is powered by darkness.

Buy your copy here.

14. Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

Published: Sept. 1, 2015

Amazon Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Madeline has a life-threatening immune disorder that doesn't allow her to step outside the walls of her home. But through online communication she meets Olly, her new next-door neighbor, and slowly begins to develop a wonderful friendship. As time goes on, Madeline begins yearning for a life beyond her home and finds herself taking huge risks to experience just that. Nicola's beautiful writing allows the reader to fully connect and empathize with Maddy, making anyone want to follow her story to the very last page.

Buy your copy here.

15. The Weight of Feathers by Anna-Marie McLemore

Published: Sept. 15, 2015

Amazon Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars

The Palomas and the Corbeaus are rival traveling performer families who are making their way across the U.S. But when a Paloma girl crosses paths with a Corbeau boy, everything changes. It's a dangerous, intriguing, and gorgeously written story that fans of The Night Circus are sure to enjoy.

Buy your copy here.

16. All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

Published: Jan. 6, 2015

Amazon Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars

Violet Markey was once a popular cheerleader, but now she finds herself on a bell tower, six stories up, frozen in terror. Theodore Finch, a manic "freak," calms her down to solid ground, and now he follows her and won't let their encounter go. He pushes and challenges Violet, seeming to understand the effect her sister's death had on her. In this heart-wrenching novel, readers will see an honest depiction of depression.

Buy your copy here.

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