As summer comes to a close, I inevitably look at my increasingly dusty ‘to be read’ piles and worry about the many books I failed to read during my vacation. Simultaneously, I peer towards the flood of shiny new titles set to be released over the next few months and I am overwhelmed. This feeling only increases when I consider the number of current fantasy series with new installments hitting the shelves soon! It is a constant dilemma–how to catch up on current series while keeping up with the new ones? I admit I have yet discover a true solution but at the very least, I’ve found that it helps to step back and take stock of the current series that might be most timely to revisit.
Here are few series worth adding to any fantasy fan’s ‘catch up’ checklist.
Of Metal and Wishes – Sarah Fine (2015 Best Fiction for Young Adults) Wen assists her father in the medical clinic that serves the Gochan One slaughterhouse. While Wen and her family are trapped by their debts to the factory, they remain better off than the Noor, workers brought in as cheap labor. And now a ghost seems to be haunting the slaughterhouse– a ghost who will do anything to protect and please Wen. As Wen becomes increasingly involved with the Noor and their charismatic young leader, she must face both the volatile ‘ghost’ and the brutal system and decide if she dares to take a stand.
The sequel, Of Dreams and Rust, was just released earlier this month.
The Diviners – Libba Bray (2013 Best Fiction for Young Adults)
It’s 1926 and glamorous New York City is simply the only place to be—at least in small town flapper Evie O’Neill’s mind. So when her parents ship her off to visit her uncle in the Big Apple, Evie is thrilled. However, the trip also means staying in Uncle Will’s highly creepy museum and Evie is hiding her own supernatural secret. Then, within days of her arrival, a young woman is found murdered and branded with strange occult symbols. Uncle Will is asked to consult on the case and soon Evie is in the middle of murder investigation—and perhaps something even more sinister.
The long awaited sequel, Lair of Dreams, will be published the end of this month!
The Burning Sky – Sherry Thomas
Iolanthe Seabourne is an elemental mage with an special gift for fire. Brought up in obscurity with her drug-addicted mentor, Iolanthe has never thought of her abilities as particularly extraordinary. But when she pulls down a massive lightning strike from the sky in an attempt to mend a failed elixir, Iolanthe suddenly gains the attention of Prince Titus, the young royal determined to follow through on his mother’s visions, revenge his family, and regain power over Atlantis. Convinced that Iolanthe is the mage prophesied to battle and defeat the tyrannical ruler Bane, he leaps into action to hide her in the non-magical world of London as they prepare for their possibly deadly fate.
The second book, The Perilous Sea, is currently available and the third volume, The Immortal Heights, is set to be released in October.
The Young Elites – Marie Lu (2015 Best Fiction for Young Adults)
Since the blood fever swept through, the island country of Kenettra has not been the same. Most victims of the fever perished and the survivors—all children—were almost all left marked. Adelina Amouteru lost her mother, her left eye, and any chance at a normal life. She gained silver hair, a lifetime of abuse from her father, and possibly some unusual abilities. Then, in a dizzying series of events, Adelina finds herself living and training in the secret headquarters of the Young Elites, a small group of blood fever survivors who have gained special abilities. But Adelina’s powers are rooted in a darkness that might be too much for this world to bear.
The second novel in the popular author’s sophomore series, The Rose Society, bursts onto shelves in October.
Etiquette and Espionage – Gail Carriger (2014 Best Fiction for Young Adults) In an alternative version of Victorian England filled with dirigibles and supernatural creatures, Sophronia Temminick drives her mother to distraction with her continued interest in climbing trees and disassembling dumbwaiters. To tame her daughter into a marriageable young lady, Mrs. Temminick sends her off to Mademoiselle Geraldine’s Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality. To Sophronia’s delight, however, Mademoiselle Geraldine’s is no ordinary finishing school. In addition to learning dance, music, dress, and etiquette, the young ladies
practice intelligence gathering, weaponry use, and other skills critical for elegant espionage.
The Finishing School series continues in Curtsies & Conspiracies and Waistcoats & Weaponry. The newest novel featuring Sophronia’s adventures, Manners & Mutiny, will be available in November.
Akata Witch – Nnedi Okorafor (2012 Best Fiction for Young Adults)
Sunny has always felt different. While her parents and brothers have rich brown skin, Sunny is an albino with skin the color of sour milk who can only play outside at night. And now that their family has moved back to Nigeria, New York City-born Sunny is even more of an outsider. But then Sunny discovers that she is one of the Leopard people. Joining a quartet of fellow magical students in training, Sunny discovers a whole new world running alongside her own. But a serial killer is kidnapping and killing children and it seems to be up to Sunny and her friends to stop him.
Happily, this thrilling Nigerian fantasy adventure is set to gain a sequel titled Breaking Kola later this autumn.
Already caught up on these thrilling series and looking to discover
some new fantasy worlds?
Luckily, several well-loved authors have the first titles in new series coming out this fall as well. Established adult fantasy writer Kate Elliott is diving into young adult fiction this month with her new novel, Court of Fives. Meanwhile, Leigh Bardugo continues to explore the rich world of her popular Grishna trilogy in a new series beginning with Six of Crows this September. Additionally, Rae Carson, author of the Fire and Thorns trilogy, kicks off her new historical fantasy series next month with Walk On Earth A Stranger.
-Kelly Dickinson, currently reading The Safest Lie – Angela Cerrito and Ms. Marvel, Vol. 3: Crushed – G. Willow Wilson, Takeshi Miyazawa, & Elmo Bondoc.