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    5 YA Books You Should Be Reading This January

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    1. Up From the Sea by Leza Lowitz

    Release date: January 12th, 2016

    A fictionalized novel about the tragic tsunamis that destroyed both lives and homes off the coasts of Japan in 2011, Kai — a teen boy — experiences horrific loss from the devastation. But when he makes the journey to NYC to seek solace, he realizes the only way to help heal from the disaster is to return home. Told in verse, Lowitz successfully captures the raw emotions of loss, grief, and what it means to move forward.

    2. American Ace by Marilyn Nelson

    Release date: January 12th, 2016

    When Conner's grandmother dies, she leaves behind a letter explaining that the father he was raised by is not his true birth father. This shakes the foundation of his very close Italian-American family. Wanting to seek the truth, Conner attempts to piece together what he knows of his real father based off a class ring and pilot's wings, exploring a deeper understanding of race and identity in the process. Written in verse, Nelson creates a gorgeous story that stays with you long after you finish.

    3. This Is Where It Ends by Marieke Nijkamp

    Release date: January 5th, 2016

    This dark, tragically realistic YA novel tells a gripping story about a school shooting. The story is told from the perspective of several different students during this devastating fifty-four minutes. It's a gritty, emotional, and suspenseful read and although fictionalized, it reflects on a problematic and harrowing issue across the nation.

    4. The Memory of Light by Francisco X. Stork

    Release date: January 26th, 2016

    When Vicky Cruz wakes up in the hospital after a suicide attempt, she knows things will never be the same. During her recovery at Lakeview Hospital, she befriends a variety of different people who help her see things differently. But ultimately, Vicky must decide if she's ready to try and heal her own emotional and mental wounds and begin again. Stork offers a raw, honest portrayal of the effects of mental illness in this profound coming-of-age novel.

    5. The Love That Split the World by Emily Henry

    Release date: January 26th, 2016

    Pitched as Friday Night Lights meets The Time Traveler’s Wife, this story follows Natalie's summer in her hometown of Kentucky. Unexplainable things begin happening to Natalie, and the strangest of all is a visit from an apparition that tells her to "save him." The next night she meets Beau, and Natalie begins to slowly unravel what it is she must do. This story pairs a gorgeous narrative with exceptional voice for a truly profound debut.