As the end of the year approaches, I find myself paging through books to meet my yearly reading goal before the looming deadline of December 31st. Thankfully, this fall has provided me with some great reading material. As I order for the library's teen collection, pretty much all I've been reading are young adult books. From charming meet-cutes to thrilling fantasy adventures, here are just some of my favorite fall reads:
What If It's Us by Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera
In this adorable story, two guys who meet by chance at a New York City post office lose track of each other, wonder "What if...", and then find each other. Knowing they only have a few weeks together, they fall in love anyway. And love isn't easy. In fact, they have several do-overs. It's a fun read by the authors of popular YA LGBT books Simon Vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda (a.k.a. the Love, Simon movie) and They Both Die at the End.
Sadie by Courtney Summers
After her thirteen-year-old sister is murdered, Sadie absconds on her own to track down the man who killed her. The narrative alternates between Sadie’s voice and an investigative reporter following her footsteps. I listened to the audiobook, which is absolutely riveting, because it’s just like you’re listening to an actual true-crime podcast. Timely. Thrilling. Heart-wrenching. This story will definitely stay with me.
Black Wings Beating by Alex London
Once you get into it, you won't be able to put this one down! An enthralling new fantasy adventure with diverse—including queer—characters, written by an #OwnVoices author. Kylee and Brysen are twins who live in a community that worships birds. To settle a debt and save the life of the boy Brysen loves, they set out on a dangerous journey to track down the Ghost Eagle, a giant killer that took the life of their abusive father. A great read for anyone looking for fantasy, especially featuring LGBTQ+ leads. I look forward to book two!
These Rebel Waves by Sara Raasch
A thrilling new adventure from the author of the Snow Like Ashes series with a cliffhanger ending that will leave you begging for more! Five years ago, Lu helped the island of Grace Loray overthrow its oppressive ruling country, Agrid. When an Agridian delegate to the island’s council disappears, Lu partners with Devereux, a pirate who scavenges and sells magic plants, to track him down and uncover a dark conspiracy. Diverse characters, an intriguing new world, magic, action, and unexpected plot twists make this a book you won't be able to put down.
Rabbit & Robot by Andrew Smith
Four teens are stuck on a space station orbiting the moon with hyper-moody androids and blue shape-shifting aliens that infect the robots with worms that turn them into cannibals. I'm not gonna lie, this is another weird one straight from the mind of the author of Grasshopper Jungle. You'll leave it thinking, "What the $#&% did I just read?"
-William Ottens is the Cataloging and Collection Development Coordinator at Lawrence Public Library.