Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2025) Featured Review: Gachiakuta, vol. 1 by Kei Urana (story) and Hideyoshi Andou (graffiti design)

  • Gachiakuta, vol. 1
  • by Kei Urana (story) and Hideyoshi Andou (graffiti design)
  • Kodansha Comics
  • Publication Date: January 16, 2024
  • ISBN-13: 979-8888770207

Rampant consumerism is encouraged in a particular floating town, and affluent citizens discard valuable items instead of repairing them. Rudo lives in the slums and sees use in what gets thrown away. Exiled into the Pit when he is wrongly accused and convicted of murder, Rudo finds more than garbage in this eerie wasteland. The careless wastefulness of the townspeople has created literal monsters that the Cleaners battle. Rudo must join them to discover the truth and fight for freedom.

Kei Urana’s dystopian world-building is impressive, painting a vivid picture of a society that values trash more than people. Hideyoshi Andou’s design brings this world to life; from the towering megacities to the barren wastelands below, every aspect of the world feels meticulously crafted and brimming with detail, inviting readers to lose themselves in the bold art style that captures the kinetic energy of the multiple conflicts. Beyond its immersive world-building, this story tackles weighty themes with intelligence and nuance. Questions of ethics, morality, and the nature of humanity weave into a compelling narrative.Fans of Chainsaw Man will see Rudo as a similarly flawed hero who must fight a rigged system to free himself from subjugation. Urana’s dynamic battle scenes will delight readers of Attack on Titan by Hajime Isayama. Readers can find similar stories and themes in Battle Angel Alita by Yukito Kishiro and Chris Gooch’s Under-Earth. Volume 2 will be released on April 30, 2024.

Patricia Jimenez

Other Nominated Titles

Amazing Audiobooks (#AA2025) Featured Review: For Girls Who Walk Through Fire by Kim DeRose

  • For Girls Who Walk Through Fire
  • by Kim DeRose
  • Narrated by Mia Hutchinson-Shaw
  • Dreamscape Media
  • Publication Date: October 3, 2023
  • ISBN: 9781666647594

Armed with a spell book from her late mother, Elliott creates a coven of witches with her sexual assault survivor support group. This group of young women plans to exact revenge on their attackers and find the justice they are lacking. While the book warns of blowback, these magical vigilantes are ready to stop their assailants by any means necessary. As the coven gets closer and the stakes get higher, Elliott and her friends will need to decide what justice truly means. 

The magic elements of this story explore the implications of sexual assault in unique ways and open up discussion about individual journeys of healing. The grotesque scenes of revenge give this story a horrific tone, which pairs nicely with its magical realism. Hutchinson-Shaw’s narration ensured that each survivor’s voice was distinct and helped listeners easily distinguish the difference between them. This audiobook’s magic take on real-world issues will compel listeners to continue the conversation on the state of survivorship in our society. 

Readers who are looking for more after finishing All the Fighting Parts by Hannah V Sawyerr and don’t mind a bit of fantasy will find a great follow-up in this audiobook. DeRose’s story is also perfect for readers who enjoyed Girls with Sharp Sticks. This novel is a wonderful callback to movies like The Craft and television shows like The Secret Circle.

-Sarah Carpenter

Other Nominated Titles

Release Date: January 9, 2024
Release Date: February 27, 2024
Release Date: September 5, 2023

The Selected Lists teams read throughout the year in search of the best titles published in their respective categories. Once a book is suggested (either internally or through the title suggestion form), it must pass through a review process to be designated an official nomination.

Each week, the teams feature a review of one of the officially nominated titles. Additional titles to receive this designation are listed as well. At year’s end, the team will curate a final list from all nominated titles and select a Top Ten.

Amazing Audiobooks (#AA2025) Featured Review: What the River Knows by Isabel Ibañez

After the mysterious death of her parents, Inez Olivera sets out from her home in Argentina to visit the place they lived and lost their lives, Egypt. There she meets her new guardian and his handsome assistant who try to send her back home to Buenos Aires. Instead, she sneaks onto a ship headed to the archaeological site where her parents were last seen in the hopes that she might uncover the truth behind their disappearance. Along the way the magic she is using to guide her search ends up leading her to uncover more than just the truth about her parents’ death.

What the River Knows is a historical fantasy set in Egypt in the 1880s. It is full of adventure, mystery, magic, and intrigue. The immersive setting, engaging plot, and strong characters come together to create a world that will draw readers in and keep them engaged with twists and turns. The narration of Hamad and Osorio does an excellent job expressing the emotions and tension of the characters and situations in the book. The narrators have a strong grasp of proper pronunciation of words in multiple languages in the book.The use of music and multiple narrators was also a nice addition to the overall production.

Readers who enjoyed Divine Rivals by Rebecca Ross or books by Chloe Gong or R.F. Kuang would enjoy this story. It would also be a perfect read for fans of The Mummy. Additionally, readers who enjoy mythology based stories like the Kane Chronicles by Rick Riordan would find elements of this book appealing.

-Haley Shaw

Other Nominated Titles

Release Date: February 27, 2024
Release Date: September 26, 2023
Release Date: November 7, 2023

The Selected Lists teams read throughout the year in search of the best titles published in their respective categories. Once a book is suggested (either internally or through the title suggestion form), it must pass through a review process to be designated an official nomination.

Each week, the teams feature a review of one of the officially nominated titles. Additional titles to receive this designation are listed as well. At year’s end, the team will curate a final list from all nominated titles and select a Top Ten.

2024 Great Graphic Novels for Teens

Great Graphic Novels for Teens is a list of recommended graphic novels and illustrated nonfiction for those ages 12-18, prepared yearly by YALSA. Click on the title of each book to be taken to the blog post featuring a review, or browse all blog posts here. You can see previous lists on the YALSA website and on the Teen Book Finder app.

Blogging Team

Kelley Blue, Portland Public Library, ME (Coordinator); Meg Bowie, Free Library of Philadelphia; Jean Broughton, Vancouver Public Library; Jacqueline Bush, Stratford Library Association; M’issa Fleming, New Orleans Public Library; Patricia Jimenez, Teacher-Librarian, Sunnyslope High School; Rachel Johannigmeier, Kirkwood Public Library; Kaileigh Oldham, Danville Public Library; Ness Shortley, Wake County Public Schools, NC; Mariela Siegert, Downers Grove North High School Library; Scot Smith, Robertsville Middle School; Cheyenne Sons, Mayfield Senior School; Lee Stokes, Upper Darby Township Library; Adam Wheeler, Chicago Public Library.

Coordinator note: Age range recommendations for all titles on this list are determined by information provided from publishers, professional reviews, and the professional reading knowledge of committee members.

Top Ten

  • Belle of the Ball
  • By Mari Costa
  • Art by the author
  • March 21, 2023
  • Length: 320 p.
  • First Second, paper, $17.99
  • 9781250784124
  • Grades: 9-12
  • 741.5973
  • Feelings get complicated between team mascot Belle, cheerleader Regina, and all-star athlete Chloe in this refreshing take on the high school love triangle.
  • Brooms
  • By Jasmine Walls
  • Art by Teo
  • October 10, 2023
  • Length: 248 p.
  • Levine Querido, paper, $18.99
  • 9781646142682
  • Grades: 9-12
  • sqaa
  • In a 1930s infused with magic, broom racing is a sport for the privileged. Billie May, Loretta, and Cheng-Kwan risk competing in underground races, taking two young witches under their wings.
  • Family Style: Memories of an American from Vietnam
  • By Thien Pham
  • Art by the author
  • June 20, 2023.
  • Length: 240 p.
  • First Second, paper, $17.99
  • 9781250809728
  • Grades: 9-12
  • 305.9.
  • Distinct memories of food link the chapters of Thien Pham’s life: fleeing Vietnam, surviving a refugee camp, growing up in California, and becoming a graphic artist.
  • Insomniacs After School, Vol. 1, Vol. 2
  • By Makoto Ojiro
  • Art by the author
  • 2023
  • Length: 178 p., 200 p.
  • VIZ Media, paper, $12.99
  • 9781974736577, 9781974737031
  • Grades: 9-12
  • 741.5952.
  • Sleepless high school student Ganta Nakami begins napping in his school’s abandoned astronomy tower with classmate (and fellow insomniac) Isaki Magari in this sweet slice-of-life manga series.
  • Mexikid: A Graphic Memoir
  • By Pedro Martín
  • Art by the author
  • August 1, 2023
  • Length: 320 p.
  • Dial Books, paper, $14.99
  • 9780593462294
  • Grades: 5-8
  • 305.86
  • Pedro embarks on an epic, often hilarious, family road trip from California to Mexico and back again on a mission to bring his legendary abuelito to the U.S.
  • Monstrous: A Transracial Adoption Story
  • By Sarah Myer
  • Art by the author
  • 2023
  • Length: 272 p.
  • First Second, paper, $17.99
  • 9781250268808
  • Grades: 8-12
  • Length: 305.
  • Korean-American transracial adoptee Sarah works through her anxiety, anger, and identity issues via the world of art and anime fandom in this coming-of-age memoir.
  • Muhammad Najem, War Reporter: How One Boy Put the Spotlight on Syria
  • By Muhammad Najem and Nora Neus
  • Art by Julie Robine
  • 2022
  • Length: 320 p.
  • Little, Brown Ink, paper, $12.99
  • 9780759556904
  • Grades: 5-10
  • 956.9104.
  • After losing nearly everything to endless war and devastation, teenager Muhammad gathers the stories of Syrian children and makes a global impact with his journalism.
  • The Talk
  • By Darrin Bell
  • Art by the author
  • 2023
  • Length: 352 p.
  • Henry Holt and Co., hardcover, $29.99
  • 9781250805140
  • General Adult
  • 305.896
  • As he raises his own son, Darrin Bell reflects on how “The Talk” shaped his childhood, teen years, and young adult life, and how he found a voice through cartooning.
  • Tiger, Tiger, vol. 1. 
  • By Petra Erika Nordlund
  • Art by the author
  • 2023
  • Length: 320 p.
  • Seven Seas Entertainment, paper, $19.99
  • 9781638584193
  • Grades: 10-12
  • 741.94897.
  • Ludovica is a sheltered royal who longs to study sea sponges, so she steals her brother’s identity and sets sail! But the high seas hold much more than she ever anticipated.
  • Victory. Stand! Raising My Fist for Justice
  • By Tommie Smith and Derrick Barnes
  • Art by Dawud Anyabwile
  • 2022
  • Length: 208 p.
  • Norton Young Readers, paper, $17.95
  • 9781324052159
  • Grades: 7-12
  • 796.42.
  • Track-and-field gold medalist and civil rights icon Tommie Smith recounts his life leading up to his participation in the 1968 Summer Olympics in this riveting and relevant graphic memoir.

Nominations

Nonficton

*Denotes a Top Ten Title

  • 83 Days in Mariupol: A War Diary. By Don Brown. Art by the author. 2023. 128p. Clarion Books, hardcover, $22.99 (9780063311565). Gr. 10-12. 947.7086. This work of graphic nonfiction focuses on the siege of Mariupol and the recent Russian invasion of Ukraine.
  • The Bodyguard Unit: Edith Garrud, Women’s Suffrage, and Jujitsu. By Clément Xavier. Art by Lisa Lugrin. 2023. 136 p. Graphic Universe, paper, $17.99 (9798765607473). Gr. 8-12. 324.623. This graphic biography tells the story of how jujitsu instructor Edith Garrud taught women demanding the right to vote in England how to defend themselves against violent oppression.
  • Bomb: The Race to Build–and Steal–the World’s Most Dangerous Weapon. By Steve Sheinkin. Art by Nick Bertozzi. 2023. 256p. Roaring Brook Press, paper, $17.99 (9781250206749). Gr. 6-8. 623.45119. This graphic adaptation of Sheinkin’s award-winning work of narrative nonfiction explores the history, spycraft, and science of building the world’s first atomic weapons during World War II.
  • Dreamer: A Graphic Novel Memoir. By Akim Aliu and Greg Anderson Elysée. Art by Karen De la Vega. 2023. 128p. Graphix, paper, $14.99 (9781338787603). Gr. 6-8. 796.962. Former NHL player Akim Aliu recounts the difficult path he took during his youth to achieve his dream in a sport traditionally dominated by white players and coaches.
  • Embrace Your Size: My Own Body Positivity. By hara. Art by the author. 2022. 160p. Yen Press, paper, $17.00 (9781975347291). General Adult. 306.4. This nonfiction manga contains vignettes about the creator’s personal experiences with body image and how body positivity does/does not exist in society.
  • *Family Style: Memories of an American from Vietnam. By Thien Pham. Art by the author. 2023. 240p. First Second, paper, $17.99 (9781250809728). Gr. 9-12. 305.9. Distinct memories of food link the chapters of Thien Pham’s life: fleeing Vietnam,  surviving a refugee camp, growing up in California, and becoming a graphic artist.
  • A First Time for EverythingBy Dan Santat. Art by the author. 2023. 230p. First Second, paper, $14.99 (9781250851048). Gr. 6-8. B. The summer before his first year in high school, Dan Santat travels to Europe with his classmates and steps outside his comfort zone.
  • Hidden Systems: Water, Electricity, the Internet, and the Secrets Behind the Systems We Use Every Day. By Dan Nott. Art by the illustrator. 2023. 272p. Random House Graphic, paper, $17.99 (9781984896049). Gr. 7-12. 509. This work of graphic nonfiction provides an in-depth look at the technological, historical, and social aspects of water, electricity, and the Internet and demonstrates the urgent need for changes to the current systems.
  • In Limbo: A Graphic Memoir. By Deb JJ Lee. Art by the author. 2023. 339p. First Second, paper, $17.99 (9781250252661). Gr. 10-12. B. This graphic memoir explores some of the author’s most poignant and painful memories of growing up as a Korean-American and perpetually feeling ‘in limbo’ with friends, family, and community.
  • It Won’t Always Be Like This: A Graphic Memoir. By Malaka Gharib. Art by the author. 2022. 224p. Ten Speed Press, paper, $19.99 (9781984860293). General Adult. B. After Malaka’s parents divorced and her father left the US, she now spends summers with him in Egypt, where she struggles to understand where she fits within family and culture.
  • The Keeper: Soccer, Me, and the Law That Changed Women’s Lives. By Kelcey Ervick. Art by the author. 2022. 336p. Avery Publishing Group, paper, $27.00 (9780593539187). General Adult. B. One athlete’s personal history with Title IX is interspersed with factual details about the fight for equality in women’s sports and the history of women’s soccer.
  • Kwändǖr. By Cole Pauls. Art by the author. 2022. 140p. Conundrum Press, paper, $25.00 (9781772620771). General Adult. 741.5973. This collection of shorter comics and zines brings together the culture and experience of the artist and other Dene and Arctic peoples living in Haines Junction, Yukon Territory.
  • Maybe an Artist: A Graphic Memoir. By Elizabeth Montague. Art by the author. 2022. 176p. Random House Studio, paper, $17.99 (9780593307823). Gr. 7-9. B. Liz Montague describes her life from childhood to the start of her professional career as a Black female cartoonist.
  • *Mexikid: A Graphic Memoir. By Pedro Martín. Art by the author. 2023. 320p. Dial Books, paper, $14.99 (9780593462294). Gr. 6-8. 305.86. Pedro embarks on an epic, often hilarious, family road trip from California to Mexico and back on a mission to bring his legendary abuelito to the U.S.
  • *Monstrous: A Transracial Adoption Story. By Sarah Myer. Art by the author. 2023. 272p. First Second, paper, $17.99 (9781250268808). Gr. 8-12. 305. Korean-American transracial adoptee Sarah works through her anxiety, anger, and identity issues via the world of art and anime fandom in this coming-of-age memoir.
  • *Muhammad Najem, War Reporter: How One Boy Put the Spotlight on Syria. By Muhammad Najem and Nora Neus. Art by Julie Robine. 2022. 320p. Little, Brown Ink, paper, $12.99 (9780759556904). Gr. 6-10. 956.9104. After losing nearly everything to endless war and devastation, teenager Muhammad gathers the stories of Syrian children and makes a global impact with his journalism. 
  • Numb to This: Memoir of a Mass Shooting. By Kindra Neely. Art by the author. 2022. 304p. Little, Brown & Co., paper, $17.99 (9780316462099). Gr. 8-12. 362.88/B. The author recounts a mass shooting at her college and explores what it is like to be a survivor in an age of epidemic gun violence.
  • The Out Side: Trans & Nonbinary Comics. By The Kao, Min Christensen and David Daneman (editors). Various artists. 2023. 176p. Andrews McMeel Publishing, paper, $16.99 (9781524880125). General Adult. 741. This collection of mini-comics assembled by trans and nonbinary creators features vibrant and affirming autobiographical stories about identity.
  • Sunshine: How One Camp Taught Me About Life, Death, and Hope. By Jarrett J. Krosoczka. Art by the author. 2023. 240p. Graphix, paper, $14.99 (9781338356311). Gr. 8-12. 618.92. In this graphic memoir, Krosoczka recounts his experiences as a volunteer counselor at a summer camp for terminally ill children and their families.
  • *The Talk. By Darrin Bell. Art by the author. 2023. 352p. Henry Holt and Co., hardcover, $29.99 (9781250805140). General Adult. 305.896. As he raises his own son, Darrin Bell reflects on how “The Talk” shaped his childhood, teen years, and young adult life, and how he found a voice through cartooning.
  • The Tryout: A Graphic Novel. By Christina Soontornvat. Art by Joanna Cacao. 2022. 272p. Graphix, paper, $12.99 (9781338741261). Gr. 6-8. B. In this graphic memoir, Christina recalls her experiences of trying out for the cheerleading squad as one of the only Asian-Americans in her Texas middle school.
  • Unaccompanied: Stories of Brave Teenagers Seeking Asylum. By Tracy White. Art by the author. 2023. 168p. Street Noise Books, paper, $19.99 (9781951491208). Gr. 10-12. 362.87. Based on interviews with real teens and the adults helping them seek U.S. citizenship, this collection presents a variety of perspectives and experiences from asylum seekers.
  • *Victory. Stand! Raising My Fist for Justice. By Tommie Smith and Derrick Barnes. Art by Dawud Anyabwile. 2022. 208p. Norton Young Readers, paper, $17.95 (9781324052159). Gr. 7-12. 796.42. Track-and-field gold medalist and civil rights icon Tommie Smith recounts his life leading up to his participation in the 1968 Summer Olympics in this riveting and relevant graphic memoir.
  • We Survived the Holocaust: The Bluma and Felix Goldberg Story. By Frank W. Baker. Art by Tim E. Ogline. 156p. Imagine and Wonder, paper, $19.99 (9781637610206). Gr. 8-10. 900/B. This graphic biography follows the lives of Bluma and Felix Goldberg from childhood, life inside German concentration camps, and their years together after the war.

Fiction

*Denotes a Top Ten Title

  • Akane-banashi, Vol. 1. By Yuki Suenaga. Art by Takamasa Moue. 2023. 200p. VIZ Media, paper, $9.99 (9781974736485). Gr. 7-12. 741.5952. Motivated by revenge, 17-year-old Akane sets out to conquer the world of rakugo, a traditional Japanese storytelling art.
  • Ay, Mija! My Bilingual Summer in Mexico. By Christine Suggs. Art by the author. 2023. 336p. Little, Brown Ink, paper (9780316591928). Gr. 7-12. 741.5973/920 Christine recounts a summer trip to Mexico to visit extended family. As a biracial teen who doesn’t speak fluent Spanish, they grapple with faith, sexuality, body image, and cultural identity.
  • *Belle of the BallBy Mari Costa. Art by the author. 2023. 320p. First Second, paper, $17.99 (9781250784124). Gr. 9-12. 741.5973. Feelings get complicated between team mascot Belle, cheerleader Regina, and all-star athlete Chloe in this refreshing take on the high school love triangle.
  • A Boy Named Rose. By Gaelle Greniller. Art by the author. 2023. 212p. Fairsquare Comics, paper, $29.99 (9798985927863). General Adult. 741. 1920s Paris: Rose is a boy who wants to dance with the girls at Le Jardin, the cabaret owned by his mother.
  • Break of Dawn. By Tetsuya Imai. Art by the author. 2023. 528p. Kodansha, paper, $22.99 (9781646518159). Gr. 8-12. 741.5952. In the year 2038, a kid named Yuma and his friends find themselves embroiled in a space mission after the family robot is taken over by an alien ship in distress.
  • *Brooms. By Jasmine Walls. Art by Teo. 2023. 248p. Levine Querido, paper, $18.99 (9781646142682). Gr. 9-12. 741.5973. In a 1930s infused with magic, broom racing is a sport for the privileged. Billie May, Loretta, and Cheng-Kwan risk competing in underground races, taking two young witches under their wings.
  • Call the Name of the Night, Vol. 1. By Tama Mitsuboshi. Art by the author. 2023. 194p. Yen Press, paper, $13.00 (9781975352004). Gr. 6-12. 741.5952. Gifted or cursed? With the help of a new mentor and some shadowy spirits, young Mira may learn to feel good about her strange new powers.
  • Catwoman: Lonely City. By Cliff Chiang. Art by the author. 2022. 224p. DC Comics, hardcover, $29.99 (9781779516367). General Adult. 741.5973. Fresh out of prison, Selina Kyle plans one last big score with fellow Gotham supervillains. Can she pull it off before her past catches up?
  • Charisma’s Turn. By Monique Couvson. Art by Amanda Jones. 2023. 128p. The New Press, hardcover, $19.99 (9781620974018). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973. After repeat suspensions for fighting, Charisma is given an alternative way to work out her issues at school: lead the social justice club.
  • Clock Striker, Vol. 1: I’m Gonna Be a Smith! By Issaka Galadima with Frederick L. Jones. Art by Issaka Galadima. 2023. 224p. Rockport Publishers, paper, $13.99 (9780760381571). Gr. 7-9. 741.5952. A new shonen-style adventure series about a young girl who lives in a world where science and engineering are used for combat.
  • Codex Black, Book 1: Fire Among Clouds. By Camilo Moncada Lozano. Art by the author. 2023. 320p. IDW, paper, $16.99 (9781684059591). Gr. 6-8. 741.5972. Itzcacalotl, a teen with wings, and Donaji, a teen with a god-possessed poncho, find themselves in a world of magic and adventure in this Mesoamerican adventure.
  • Cosmoknights, Book 2. By Hannah Templer. Art by the author. 2023. 280p. Top Shelf Productions, paper, $24.99 (9781603095112). General Adult. 741.5973. This long-awaited sci-fi sequel kicks right into hyper-drive with rebel gladiators Bee and Cass fighting the colonialist, capitalist patriarchy! Committee note: this volume can be enjoyed without having read other books in the series, though we do recommend purchasing volume 1.
  • The Cursed Princess Club. By LambCat. Art by the author. Vol. 1. 2023. 288p. Webtoons Unscrolled, paper, $18.99 (9781990259791). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973 Vol. 2. 2023. 352p. Webtoon Unscrolled, paper, $18.99 (9781990778407). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973 Beloved by her eccentric family, Princess Gwendolyn has never thought of herself as ugly–until her betrothed says she is! Enter the Cursed Princess Club: part support group, part hot mess.
  • Dai Dark, Vol. 5. By Q Hayashida. Art by the author. 2023. 214p. Seven Seas Entertainment, paper, $13.99 (9781638588252). Gr. 10-12. 741.5952. This series follows teen Zaha Sanko and company on a fully unserious journey of eldritch space horror and comedy. Committee note: this volume is best enjoyed as part of the ongoing series. We recommend collecting previous books as well as this volume.
  • D&D Dungeon Club, Vol. 1: Roll Call. By Molly Knox Ostertag. Art by Xanthe Bouma. 2022. 208p. HarperAlley, hardcover, $19.99 (9780063039247). Gr. 6-8. 741.5973. Middle schoolers Jess and Olivia have a long-running, two-person Dungeons and Dragons campaign. When Olivia wants to bring in new players, Jess worries about their friendship.
  • Daemons of the Shadow Realm, Vol. 1. By Hiromu Arakawa. Art by the author. 2023. 208p. Square Enix Manga, paper, $12.99 (9781646091867). General Adult. 741.5952. In this new series from the creator of Fullmetal Alchemist, twins Yuru and Asa discover their shared destiny: to rule over powerful daemons and save the world.
  • Danger and Other Unknown RisksBy Ryan North. Art by Erica Henderson. 2023. 208p. Penguin Workshop, paper, $16.99 (9780593224847). Gr. 9-12. 741.5973. Marguerite and her talking dog Daisy are on a quest to save the world in this standalone sci-fi romp from the creators behind The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl.
  • DC vs. Vampires. By James Tynion IV and Matthew Rosenberg. Art by Otto Schmidt. Vol. 1. 2022. 160p. DC Comics, hardcover, $24.99 (9781779516794). General Adult. 741.5973. Vol. 2. 2023. 160p. DC Comics, hardcover, $24.99 (9781779521248). General Adult. 741.5973. A mysterious master is turning both heroes and villains into vampires. With the Justice League compromised, can Batman save (or even survive) the day?
  • Dinosaur Sanctuary. By Itaru Kinoshita and Shin-ichi Fujiwara. Art by Itaru Kinoshita. Vol. 1. 2022. 194p. Seven Seas Entertainment, paper, $13.99 (9781685793241). Gr. 7-9. 741.5952. Vol. 2. 2023. 200p. Seven Seas Entertainment, paper, $13.99 (9781685793258). Gr. 7-9. 741.5952. Rookie dino-keeper Suma brings new energy and ideas to a failing dinosaur sanctuary in Japan where the staff share a special bond with their Jurassic charges.
  • Doughnuts and Doom. By Balazs Lorinczi. Art by the author. 2022. 136p. Top Shelf Productions, paper, $14.99 (9781603095136). Gr. 9-12. 741.5941. Magical Margot heads to a local doughnut shop after failing an exam, then accidentally wrecks the shop and curses sweet-slinger Elena. Oops!
  • DPS Only! By Velinxi. Art by the author. 2022. 432p. Andrew McMeel Publishing, paper, $18.99 (9781524876494). Gr. 9-12. 741.5973. Vicky’s brother is a big-shot esports player, and he has no idea that she’s been secretly playing (and winning) the same game behind his back.
  • Dreams, Vol. 1: Visions of the Crow. By Wanda John-Kehewin. Art by Nicole Marie Burton and Kielamel Sibal. 2023. 80p. Highwater Press, paper, $21.95 (9781774920459). Gr. 9-12. 741.5973. High school senior Damon Quinn has a lot to feel angry about, and he doesn’t need a vision-causing crow following him around on top of everything else.
  • Enemies: Berrybrook Middle School, Vol. 5. By Svetlana Chmakova. Art by the author. 2022. 224p. JY / Yen Press, paper, $13.00 (9781975312725). Gr. 6-8. 741.5973. Aspiring artist Felicity struggles to maintain relationships with her classmates after entering her school’s entrepreneur club pitch contest. Committee note: this volume can be enjoyed without having read other books in the series.
  • Everything Is Fine, Vol. 1. By Mike Birchall. Art by the author. 2023. 304p. Webtoon Unscrolled, paper, $19.99 (9781990259777). General Adult. Sam and Maggie have a perfect life along with all their neighbors. Everything is fine! Questioning this existence, however, leads to deadly risks that Maggie may be ready to take.
  • FirebirdBy Sunmi. Art by the author. 2023. 320p. HarperAlley, paper, $18.99 (9780062981516). Gr. 9-12. 741.5973. After sophomore Caroline begins tutoring senior Kimberly, the two strike up an increasingly close relationship while navigating family issues, queer identities, and potential romance.
  • Freestyle. By Gale Galligan. Art by the author. 2022. 240p. Graphix, paper, $12.99 (9781338045802). Gr. 6-8. 741.5973. Cory navigates the challenges of eighth grade with members of his dance crew and newfound friend, Sunna, along with plenty of breakdance moves and yo-yo tricks.
  • Frontera. By Julio Anta. Art by Jacoby Salcedo. 2023. 240p. HarperAlley, paper, $18.99 (9780063054943). Gr. 9-12. 741.5973. After unfortunate events, Mateo must rely on a ghost he isn’t even sure exists to complete his journey across the Sonoran Desert to the United States.
  • The Hills of Estrella Roja. By Ashley Robin Franklin. Art by the author. 2023. 400p. Clarion Books, paper, $21.99 (9780358567028). Gr. 9-12. 741.5973. Mari and Kat arrive in remote Estrella Roja for different reasons, but together they investigate the small town’s spooky mysteries–developing feelings for one another along the way.
  • Hollow. By Shannon Watters and Branden Boyer-White. Art by Berenice Nelle. 2022. 176p. Boom Box, paper, $19.99 (9781684158522). Gr. 9-12. 741.5. In this modern retelling, Izzy Crane moves to the town of Sleepy Hollow where “the legend” and the legacy are all too real.
  • Hooky. By Míriam Bonastre Tur. Art by the author. Vol. 2. 2022. 368p. Clarion Books, hardcover, $24.99 (9780358693093), Gr. 6-8. 741.5973. Vol. 3. 2023. 400p. Clarion Books, hardcover, $24.99 (9780358693574). Gr. 6-8. 741.5973. The magical adventures of twins Dani and Dorian continue right in this popular WEBTOON series. Committee note: this complete three volume series is best enjoyed as a whole. We recommend purchasing all three volumes.
  • Hoops. By Matt Tavares. Art by the author. 2023. 215p. Candlewick Press, paper, $12.99 (9781536231953). Gr. 6-8. 741.5973. Inspired by real players and events, “Hoops” tells the story of a trailblazing women’s high school basketball team at the dawn of Title IX.
  • Hungry GhostBy Victoria Ying. Art by the author. 2023. 198p. First Second, paper, $17.99 (9781250767004). Gr. 9-12. 741.5973. A significant life event forces high school senior Valerie to realize that her relationships with food, her body, and her mother are toxic and causing her harm.
  • If You’ll Have Me. By Eunnie. Art by the author. 2023. 336p. Viking Books for Young Readers, paper, $17.99 (9780593403235). Gr. 10-12. 741.5973. Opposites attract when shy, sensitive college freshman Momo meets the cool, popular PG in this sapphic romance.
  • The Infinity Particle. By Wendy Xu. Art by the author. 2023. 272p. Quill Tree Books, paper, $18.99 (9780062955760). Gr. 8-12. 741.5973. When young scientist Clementine Chang moves to Mars, a blossoming romance with her mentor’s humanoid AI, Kye, challenges her understanding of humanity.
  • *Insomniacs After School. By Makoto Ojiro. Art by the author. Vol. 1. 2023. 178p. VIZ Media, paper, $12.99 (9781974736577). Gr. 9-12. 741.5952. Vol. 2. 2023. 200p. VIZ Media, paper, $12.99 (9781974737031). Gr. 9-12. 741.5952. Sleepless high school student Ganta Nakami begins napping in his school’s abandoned astronomy tower with classmate (and fellow insomniac) Isaki Magari in this sweet slice-of-life manga series.
  • Is Love the Answer? By Uta Isaki. Art by the author. 2023. 256p. Kodansha, paper, $14.99 (9781646516490). Gr. 10-12. 741.5952. First year university student Chika explores the spectrum of asexual identities with the help of new friends, classmates, housemates, and old-fashioned research.
  • Kaiju No. 8. By Naoya Matsumoto. Art by the author. Vol. 4. 2022. 200p. VIZ Media, paper, $9.99 (9781974732340). General Adult. 741.5952. Vol. 5. 2023. 200p. VIZ Media, paper, $9.99 (9781974734184). General Adult. 741.5952. The gorey and hilarious adventures of half-man, half-kaiju Kafka Hibino continue! Should our hero reveal his true self if it means saving others? Committee note: these volumes are best enjoyed as part of the ongoing series. We recommend collecting previous books as well as these new volumes.
  • The Keeper. By Tananarive Due and Steven Barnes. Art by Marco Finnegan. 176p. Abrams Comic Arts, hardcover, $24.99 (9781419751554). General Adult. 741.5973. Aisha’s grandmother promised she would never end up in the foster system. Even when she dies, someone (or something) is keeping that promise to Aisha.
  • The Knight Blooms Behind the Castle Walls. By Masanari Yuduka. Art by the author. Vol. 1. 2023. 162p. Seven Seas Entertainment, paper, $13.99 (9781638589563). Gr. 6-8. 741.5952. Vol. 2. 2023. 162p. Seven Seas Entertainment, paper, $13.99 (9781685794972). Gr. 6-8. 741.5952. In this manga for fans of medieval adventure, young Rosa leaves her old life behind to take on the role of squire in her quest to become knight.
  • The Librarian of Auschwitz: The Graphic NovelBy Antonio Iturbe and Salva Rubio. Art by Loreto Aroca. 2023. 144p. Laura Godwin Books, paper, $14.99 (9781250842985). Gr. 7-9. 741.5946. This graphic adaptation of the YA novel is based on the life of Dita Kraus, who was entrusted with keeping forbidden books safe while imprisoned in Auschwitz.
  • The Lonesome Hunters, Vol. 1. By Tyler Crook. Art by the author. 2023. 120p. Dark Horse Comics, paper, $19.99 (9781506731018). General Adult. 741.5973. An old monster hunter and a young teen set out on a supernatural road trip together in an attempt to destroy ancient evils.
  • Mage and the Endless Unknown. By SJ Miller. Art by the author. 2023. 152p. Iron Circus Comics, hardcover, $15.00 (9781638991199). Gr. 9-12. 741.5973. The delightful and fanciful turn dark and sinister in this mostly wordless graphic novel about a mage and their companion exploring different lands.
  • Malcolm Kid and the Perfect Song. By Austin Paramore. Art by Sarah Bollinger. 2023. 208p. Oni Press, paper, $24.99 (9781637152232). Gr. 7-12. 741.5973. Aspiring piano player Malcolm follows his friend, Ari, into a strange shop to find the perfect keyboard, unsuspecting of the ghost trapped inside it.
  • Match Point. By Maddie Gallegos. Art by the author. 2023. 256p. First Second, paper, $14.99 (9781250784148). Gr. 6-8. 741.5973. Rosie Vo hates racquetball, but her dad, a former champion, wants her to play. Can a new teammate turn things around for Rosie?
  • Mermaid Scales and the Town of Sand. By Yoko Komori. Art by the author. 2023. 408p. VIZ Media, paper, $19.99 (9781974734658). Gr. 6-8. 741.5952. Tokiko and her father move from Tokyo to a small seaside town with a strange secret. Can Tokiko and her new friend Yoskue discover the truth?
  • Miss Miyazen Would Love to Get Closer to You. By Akitaka. Art by the author. Vol. 1. 2022. 146p. Kodansha, paper, $12.95 (9781647291419). Gr. 7-9. 741.5952. Vol. 2. 2022. 130p. Kodansha, paper, $12.95 (9781647291426). Gr. 7-9. 741.5952. Vol. 3. 2023. 143p. Kodansha, paper, $12.95 (9781647291730). Gr. 7-9. 741.5952. Vol. 4. 2023. 162p. Kodansha, paper, $12.95 (9781647292133). Gr. 7-9. 741.5952. Transfer students Miyazen and Matsubayashi are from different worlds but are drawn to each other at their new school. Shyness makes getting closer a lengthy process. Committee Note: this four volume series is complete, concluding with volume 4.
  • Monkey Meat. By Juni Ba. Art by the author. 2022. 160p. Image Comics, paper, $16.99 (9781534323230). General Adult. 741.5973. Welcome to a wacky world where the Monkey Meat corporation rules, and their products might give you supernatural powers!
  • The Moth KeeperBy K. O’Neill. Art by the author. 2023. 272p. Random House Graphic, paper, $13.99 (9780593182260). Gr. 6-8. 741.5973. Anya becomes the apprentice Moth Keeper for her nocturnal village, but the job is more difficult than she imagined.
  • My Life Among Humans. By Jed McGowan. Art by the author. 2023. 96p. Oni Press, hardcover, $19.99 (9781637151990). General Adult. 741.5973. An alien is forced to spy on an earth family, but observing humans leads him down a path of self-discovery.
  • My Special One, Vol. 1. By Momoka Koda. Art by the author. 2023. 200p. VIZ Media, paper, $9.99 (9781974736706). Gr. 9-12. 741.5952. All her friends are fangirls falling for pop idols but never Sahoko! Will that change when an idol wanders into her family’s restaurant?
  • Night and Dana. By Anya Davidson. Art by the author. 2023. 240p. Graphic Universe, paper, $18.99 (9781728430362). Gr. 9-12. 741.5973. When horror-loving teens Dana and Lily go too far in a prank at school, they’re principal enrolls them in a film class at a local community college.
  • The Night Eaters. By Marjorie Liu. Art by Sana Takeda. Book 1: She Eats the Night. 2022. 208p. Abrams ComicArts, hardcover, $24.99 (9781419758706). General Adult. 741.5973. Book 2: Her Little Reapers. 2023. 272p. Abrams ComicArts, hardcover, $24.99 (9781419758720). General Adult. 741.5973. The creators of Monstress weave a new horror-fantasy tale focused on twenty-something twins Billy and Milly, who are about to discover more about their parents than they ever wanted to know.
  • Nightwing. By Tom Taylor. Art by Bruno Redondo. Vol. 2: Get Grayson. 2022. 160p. DC Comics, hardcover, $24.99 (9781779517456). General Adult. 741.5973. Vol. 3: The Battle for Bludhaven’s Heart. 2023. 176p. DC Comics, hardcover, $24.99 (9781779520166). General Adult. 741.5973. Fighting for the future of Bludhaven is tough when you’re both Dick Grayson and Nightwing, and everyone wants both of you dead! Committee note: these volumes are best enjoyed as part of the ongoing series. We recommend collecting the first book in this series as well as these volumes
  • NorthrangerBy Rey Terciero. Art by Bre Indigo. 2023. 240p. HarperAlley, paper, $18.99 (9780063007383). Gr. 9-12. 741.5973. In this retelling of Jane Austen’s gothic Northanger Abbey, Cade works at a Texas ranch where he finds romance with the mysterious Henry Tyler, a houseful of secrets, and ghosts of all kinds.
  • The Ojja-Wojja: A Horror Mystery, or Whatever. By Magdalene Visaggio. Art by Jenn St-Onge. 2023. 192p. HarperTeen, paper, $13.99 (9780062852427). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973. Best friends Val and Lanie dig too deep into their town’s folklore and unleash an ancient monster. Now it’s up to them to save their community from certain destruction.
  • Our Not-So-Lonely Planet Guide, Vol. 3. By Mone Sorai. Art by the author. 2023. 208p. Love X Love, paper, $12.99 (9781427872531). Gr. 10-12. 741.5952. Ashahi and Mitsuki continue their trip abroad, visiting London, Spain and Morocco, and enjoy the company of one of Mitsuki’s friends. Committee Note: this volume is best enjoyed as part of the ongoing series. We recommend collecting previous books in this series as well as this volume.
  • Paper Planes. By Jennie Wood. Art by Dozerdraws. 2023. 216p. Maverick, paper, $14.99 (9781952303548). Gr. 8-12. 741.5952. After an incident at school, two former friends endure a camp for teens with behavioral problems. As the summer unfolds, will they be able to fix their broken relationship?
  • PardalitaBy Joana Estrela. Art by the author. 2023. 224p. Levine Querido, paper, $16.99 (9781646142569). Gr. 8-12. 741.5946. A coming-of-age story told in poems and panels about 16-year-old Raquel and her developing relationship with alluring drama student Pardalita.
  • Pearl of the Sea. By Anthony Silverston, Raffaella Delle Donne and Willem Samuel. Art by Willem Samuel. 2023. 168p. Catalyst Press, paper, $19.95 (9781946395740). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973. Pearl works odd and semi-dangerous jobs to help her father. One day while diving in a restricted area, she befriends a sea creature with secrets.
  • Poison Ivy, Vol. 1: The Virtuous Cycle. By G. Willow Wilson. Art by Marcio Takara. 2023. 200p. DC Comics, hardcover, $24.99 (9781779518491). General Adult. 741.5973. Having lost most of her powers, Pamela Isley leaves Gotham and Harley Quinn behind on a quest of vengeance for herself and the planet Earth.
  • The Princess and the Grilled Cheese Sandwich. By Deya Muniz. Art by the author. 2023. 256p. Little, Brown Ink, paper, $17.99 (9780316538725). Gr. 7-12. 741.5973. Lady Camembert disguises herself as a man in order to inherit her father’s title without marrying, but falling for beautiful activist Princess Brie wasn’t part of her plan.
  • Project Nought. By Chelsey Furedi. Art by the author. 2023. 336p. Clarion Books, paper, $18.99 (9780358381693). Gr. 8-12. 741.5973. Teenager Ren is yanked forward in time to 2133 for a time travel exchange program where everything seems good… until it seems it isn’t.
  • Roaming. By Mariko Tamaki. Art by Jillian Tamaki. 2023. 444p. Drawn & Quarterly, paper, $34.99 (9781770464339). General Adult. 741.5971. During their first year of college, high school friends Dani and Zoe meet up in NYC for a long-planned adventure, but Dani’s classmate Fiona interrupts their happy reunion.
  • Saving Sunshine. By Saadia Faruqi. Art by Shazleen Khan. 2023. 224p. First Second, paper, $14.99 (9781250793812). Gr. 6-8. 741.5973. On a family trip to Key West, bickering twins Zara and Zeeshan have their phones confiscated to help them learn to get along. What will they do now?
  • Scarlet Witch, Vol. 1: The Last Door. By Steve Orlando. Art by Sara Pichelli, Carlos Nieto, and Russell Dauterman. 2023. 168p. Marvel Comics, paper, $19.99 (9780785194743). General Adult. 741.5973. In this portal fantasy, Wanda Maximoff, the Scarlet Witch, runs a magic shop that lures only those with problems that cannot be solved by conventional means.
  • The Sea in You. By Jessi Sheron. Art by the author. 2023. 210p. Iron Circus, paper, $15.00 (9781638991113). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973. This modern graphic retelling of “The Little Mermaid” ventures into dark new waters while maintaining the timeless themes of transformation, empowerment, and true love.
  • Sea Serpent’s Heir, Book 1: Pirates Daughter. By Mairghread Scott. Art by Pablo Tunica. 2022. 160p. Image Comics, paper, $14.99 (9781534321298). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973. Aella’s pirate mom keeps a BIG secret from her: Aella is the reincarnation of the demonic sea serpent Xir, destined to destroy the world.
  • Season of the Bruja, Vol. 1. By Aaron Durán. Art by Sara Soler. 2023. 128p. Oni Press, paper, $19.99 (9781549308161). Gr. 9-12. 741.5973. A young bruja works to keep paranormal beings and magic safe but falters after losing her grandmother to a religious sect determined to destroy all her kind.
  • Space Trash, Vol. 1. By Jenn Woodall. Art by the author. 2022. 96p. Oni Press, hardcover, $21.99 (9781637150405). Gr. 10-12. 741.5973. Sent to a reformatory high school on the moon, Stab, Yuki, and Una want nothing more than to find a way back to Earth.
  • The Spirit of DenendehBy Richard Van Camp. Art by Scott B. Henderson, Donovan Yaciuk and Nickolej Villiger. Vol. 1: A Blanket of Butterflies. 2022. 56p. Highwater Press, paper, $21.95 (9781774920404). Gr. 9-12. 741.5971. Vol. 2: As I Enfold You in Petals. 2023. 72p. Highwater Press, paper, $21.95 (9781774920411). Gr. 9-12. 741.5971. This slim but powerful comics duology blends history and spirituality with the present day lives of indigenous Tłı̨chǫ Dene characters.
  • Stars in Their Eyes. By Jessica Walton. Art by Aśka. 2023. 224p. Graphix, paper, $15.99 (9781338818796). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973. Maisie, an above-the-knee amputee, meets Ollie at her first ever FanCon, and the two bond quickly over movies, shows, and comics.
  • The Summer Hikaru Died, Vol. 1. By Mokumokuren. Art by the author. 2023. 180p. Yen Press, paper, $15.00 (9781975360542). Gr. 9-12. 741.5952. High school student Yoshiki has an unsettling feeling about his lifelong friend Hiakaru. Though he looks, talks, and acts the same, Hikaru is not Hikaru anymore.
  • Superman: Son of Kal-El. By Tom Taylor. Vol. 2: The Rising. By Tom Taylor. Art by Cian Tormey and Bruno Redondo. 2022. 168p. DC Comics, hardcover, $24.99 (9781779517388). General Adult. 741.5973. Vol. 3: Battle for Gamora. By Tom Taylor and Nicole Maines. Art by Cian Tormey and Clayton Henry. 2023. 136p. DC Comics, hardcover, $24.99 (9781779520074). General Adult. 741.5973. New Superman, new problems. Jonathan Kent has to handle Lex Luther pairing up with the dictator of Gamora! Can his dad just come back already? Committee Note: these volumes are best enjoyed as part of the ongoing series. We recommend collecting the first book in this series as well as these volumes.
  • Talli, Daughter of the Moon, vol. 1. By Sourya. Art by the author. 2022. 168p. Oni Press, paper, $19.99 (9781637150825). Gr. 7-9. 741.5952. Talli is a summoner, a descendent of the moon goddess, and she is forced to live on the run with a ragtag group of allies.
  • Tegan and Sarah: Junior High. By Tegan Quin and Sara Quin. Art by Tillie Walden. 2023. 304p. Farrar, Straus & Giroux, paper, $14.99 (9780374313029). Gr. 6-8. 741.5971. A fictionalized version of twin musicians Tegan & Sara Quin’s early teen years, featuring new friends and new tests to the bonds of sisterhood.
  • *Tiger, Tiger, Vol. 1. By Petra Erika Nordlund. Art by the author. 2023. 320p. Seven Seas Entertainment, paper, $19.99 (9781638584193). Gr. 10-12. 741.94897. Ludovica is a sheltered royal who longs to study sea sponges, so she steals her brother’s identity and sets sail! But the high seas hold much more than she ever anticipated.
  • Tower of God, Vol. 1. By S.I.U. Art by the author. 2022. 288p. Webtoon Unscrolled, paper, $18.99 (9781990259906). Gr. 9-12. 741.5951. Welcome to the Tower. Everyone’s dream is to ascend it. Hundreds will try; few, if any, will rise to its challenges.
  • True Beauty. By Yaongyi. Art by the author. Vol. 1. 2022. 288p. Webtoon Unscrolled, paper, $18.99 (9781990259890). Gr. 7-12. 741.5951. Vol. 2. 2023. 267p. Webtoon Unscrolled, paper, $18.99 (9781990778025). Gr. 7-12. 741.5951. Jugyeong Lim navigates self-esteem and a love triangle through her passion for (and reliance on) the art of makeup in the print volumes of this popular web series.
  • Twelfth Grade Night: Arden High, Book 1. By Molly Horton Booth and Stephanie Kate Strohm. Art by Jamie Green. 2022. 160p. Disney-Hyperion, paper, $14.99 (9781368064651). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973. Twins Vi and Sebastian start a new year at different schools. Soon Vi is swept up in some Shakespearean-level romantic drama. Literally!
  • Two Tribes. By Emily Bowen Cohen. Art by the author. 2023. 256p. Heartdrum, paper, $15.99 (9780062983589). Gr. 6-8. 741.5973. Mia is Jewish and Muscogee, but living with her mom and stepfather means she only knows her Jewish heritage. She secretly visits her father to learn about her Muscogee heritage.
  • Unfamiliar, Vol. 1. By Haley Newsome. Art by the author. 2022. 160p. Andrews McMeel Publishing, paper, $15.99 (9781524876838). Gr. 8-12. 741.5973. A culinary witch named Planchette gathers help from new friends and familiars to exorcize the many ghosts living in her new home.
  • Villains Are Destined to Die, Vol. 1. By Gwon Gyeoeul. Art by SUOL. 2022. 256p. Ize Press, paper, $20.00 (9798400900006). Gr. 9-12. 741.5952. Ever fall asleep grinding too many hours on a new RPG? Careful! You may wake up inside the game. On hard mode. As the villain.
  • Welcome to Demon School! Iruma-kun, Vol. 1. By Osamu Nishi. Art by the author. 2023. 200p. Vertical Comics, paper, $12.95 (9781647292423). Gr. 9-12. 741.5952. After Iruma Suzuki’s parents sell his soul to a demon, he must do his best to survive high school in the underworld as a human.
  • The Witch’s Throne. By Cedric Caballes. Art by the author. Vol. 1. 2022. 320p. Andrews McMeel Publishing, paper, $15.99 (9781524876500). Gr. 9-12. 741.5973. Vol. 2. 2023. 272p. Andrews McMeel Publishing, paper, $15.99 (9781524881276). Gr. 9-12. 741.5973. Inspired by the heroic stories of her childhood, young alchemist Agni ventures out to become a Throne Seeker, picking up three companions haphazardly along the way.
  • The World After the Fall, Vol. 1. By S-Cynan. Art by Undead Gamja. 2022. 280p. Ize Press, paper, $20.00 (9798400900044). Gr. 9-12. 741.5951. Jaewhan is the last of the Tower Walkers, an elite group of ‘chosen ones’ selected to climb the levels of nightmarish towers filled with monsters.

2024 Amazing Audiobooks for Young Adults

Each year, YALSA’s Amazing Audiobooks Blogging Team selects and annotates an annual list of notable audio recordings significant to young adults from those released in the past two years. Click on the title of each book to be taken to the blog post featuring a review, or browse all blog posts here. You can see previous lists on the YALSA website and on the Teen Book Finder app.

Blogging Team

Coordinator Jennifer Sutton, Catherine M. Andronik, Rebecca Baldwin, Jennifer Balke, Sarah Carpenter, Jen Haas, Amy Hailey, Alyssa Johnson, Natalie LaRocque, Ileana Pulu, Haley Shaw, Lysha Thompson

Top Ten

  • Check and Mate
  • By Ali Hazelwood
  • Read by Karissa Vacker
  • November 7, 2023.
  • Length: 9.5 hr.
  • Listening Library, DD
  • 9780593744543
  • Grades: 8-12.
  • This enemies to lovers, character-driven romance, is set in the world of competitive chess. Mallory swore off chess but when she accepts a chess fellowship she finds herself falling back in love with the game and in love with the world’s number 1 chess player. Karissa Vacker’s narration is engaging and brings the characters to life with multiple voices.
  • Imogen, Obviously
  • By Becky Albertalli
  • Read by Caitlin Kinnunen
  • May 2, 2023
  • Length: 9.5 hr.
  • HarperCollins Publishers Inc. | Balzer + Bray, DD
  • 9780063045903
  • Grades: 9-12.
  • Imogen is the world’s best queer ally, so it is no big deal to pretend to be her best friend’s ex when she visits her at college. Imogen finds herself falling in love with the college and someone unexpected. This lighthearted audio eases listeners into exploring deeper and more complex issues.
  • Lei and the Fire Goddess
  • By Malia Maunakea
  • Read by Jennifer Robideau
  • June 6, 2023
  • Length: 8 hr.
  • Listening Library, DD
  • 9780593681244
  • Grades: 4-6.
  • Lei begs her Tūtū / grandma to do touristy things during a visit to Hawai’i, but tūtū prioritizes family traditions and folklore. Then Lei picks a sacred flower and insults Pele, fire goddess, whose wrath sends her on an impossible adventure. A fast-paced action story with expert pronunciation of ʻŌlelo Hawai’i / Native Hawaiian.
  • The Life and Crimes of Hoodie Rosen
  • By Isaac Blum
  • Read by Josh Bloomberg
  • September 13, 2022
  • Length: 6 hr.
  • Listening Library, DD
  • 9780593630037
  • Grades: 7-10. 
  • Hoodie Rosen’s life is turned upside down when his Orthodox Jewish community relocates to an unwelcoming town. Hoodie’s only solace is Anna-Marie, whose mother, the mayor, opposes Hoodie’s community. Bloomberg expresses humor while exploring the painful topic of religious prejudice.   
  • Promise Boys
  • By Nick Brooks
  • Read by a full cast
  • January 31, 2023
  • Length: 6.5 hr.
  • Macmillan Audio, DD
  • 9781250877253
  • Grades: 9-12.
  • When the principal of The Urban Promise Prep School is found dead several students find themselves suspects, as the students begin their own investigation, they find a dark side to the prestigious school. A suspenseful reading by a full cast pulls the listener into the twists and turns of this whodunit. 
  • The Queens of New York
  • By E.L. Shen
  • Read by a full cast
  • June 6, 2023
  • Length: 8 hr.
  • HarperCollins Publishers Inc. | Quill Tree Books, DD
  • 9780063237988
  • Grades: 8-11.
  • Best friends and New York natives Jia, Ariel and Everett are inseparable until this summer. Each friend goes on their own summer adventure and readers get to see them become more comfortable with themselves and the world they want to live in. The three narrators each have a unique delivery perfectly reflecting the teen characters.
  • Warrior Girl Unearthed
  • By Angeline Boulley
  • Read by Isabella Star LaBlanc
  • May 2, 2023
  • Length: 11.5 hr
  • Macmillan Audio, DD
  • 9781250877277
  • Grades: 9-12
  • Perry Firekeeper-Birch just wanted to enjoy her summer. Instead she is forced to complete an internship at her tribe’s museum. There she learns about NAGPRA and repatriation. She and her friends embark on a journey to bring their ancestors home. The narrator brings the story to life with her pronunciation of Ojibwa language and her captivating tone.
  • We Deserve Monuments
  • By Jas Hammonds
  • Read by Tamika Katon-Donegal
  • November 29, 2022
  • Length: 10.5 hr.
  • Recorded Books, Inc., DD
  • 9781705069530
  • Grades: 9-12.
  • Avery’s life changes when she leaves her home in DC to live in a small southern town where she encounters a hostile grandmother, a racist community, and the mystery of her grandfather’s disappearance decades ago. Tamika Katon-Donegal emotionally portrays Avery’s journey in this LGBTQ+ slow-burn mystery.
  • What Happened to Rachel Riley?
  • By Claire Swinarski
  • Read by a full cast
  • January 10, 2023
  • Length: 6 hr.
  • HarperCollins Publishers Inc. | Quill Tree Books, DD
  • 9780063213128
  • Grades: 5-8.
  • Anna Hunt just moved to East Middle, where she discovers that former popular girl, Rachel Riley, is now enemy number one. Using a full cast of readers to present a variety of clues in the form of notes, emails, and text messages, Anna digs into the mystery.
  • Zachary Ying and the Dragon Emperor
  • By Xiran Jay Zhao
  • Read by Eric Yang.
  • November 11, 2022
  • Length: 9 hr.
  • Simon & Schuster Audio, DD
  • 9781797158914
  • Grades: 6-8.
  • Zachary Ying is just trying to survive school and play his favorite AR video game. Suddenly, his game becomes more reality than augmented reality. He embarks on a journey across China to save his mom and save the world. The narrator expertly brings each character to life with unique voices. 

Nominees

  • Afterglow. By Phil Stamper. Read by a full cast. 2023. 9 hr. Listening Library, DD (9780593347720). Gr.  9-12. In the sequel to Golden Boys, Gabe, Reese, Sal, and Heath navigate senior year as they encounter life changes, discrimination, and love. Can they accomplish their dreams and keep their friendships alive? A heartfelt story about growing up performed earnestly by an ensemble cast.
  • Beyond the Wand. By Tom Felton. Read by the author. 2022. 7 hr. Hachette Audio, DD (9781668619483). Adult. Tom Felton rose to fame as the villainous Draco Malfoy in the Harry Potter movie series. In his memoir, he details his experience as a boy wizard and struggles with addiction and mental illness in adulthood. Felton’s story comes to life with his masterfully humorous and honest narration. 
  • The Black Queen. By Jumata Emill. Read by Angela Pean and Erin Spencer. 2023. 11 hr. Listening Library, DD (9780593667699). Gr. 9-12. Nova is the first Black homecoming queen of Lovett High, but she is murdered shortly after being elected. Her best friend, Duchess, and main suspect, Tinsley, are determined to solve the crime. The alternating voices add a depth to the story and keep listeners in suspense. 
  • Blood Debts. By Terry J. Benton-Walker. Read by a full cast. 2023. 14.5 hr. Macmillan Audio, DD (9781250883186). Gr. 9-12. In magical New Orleans, twins Clement and Cristina are the descendants of the dethroned Generational magic queen. When their family is attacked by unknown assailants, they must uncover secrets of the past, to save their futures. The full cast of narrators brings listeners into the intrigue and plays out the expansive plot. 
  • Borrow My Heart. By Kasie West. Read by Caitlin Kinnunen. 2023. 7.5hr. Listening Library, DD (9780593680162). Gr. 8-12. To save Asher from the embarrassment of being catfished, Wren secretly pretends to be his online girlfriend. Wren knows that she needs to come clean, as her feelings for Asher grow. Told with typical Kasie West panache, Caitlin Kinnunen’s narration keeps the fun going.
  • The Brothers Hawthorne. By Jennifer Lynn Barnes. Read by Jay Ben Markson. 2023. 13 hr. Hachette Audio, DD (9781668623817). Grayson and Jameson Hawthorne each face a challenge of their own, half a world apart. Both rely on everything their grandfather taught them. Nash and Xander offer their support as does Avery Grahams, the newly named Hawthorne heiress. The narrator’s smooth, mellow voice is perfect for multiple characters. Gr. 9-12.
  • *Check and Mate. By Ali Hazelwood. Read by Karissa Vacker. 2023. 9.5 hr. Listening Library, DD (9780593744543). Gr. 8-12. This enemies to lovers, character-driven romance, is set in the world of competitive chess. Mallory swore off chess but when she accepts a chess fellowship she finds herself falling back in love with the game and in love with the world’s number 1 chess player. Karissa Vacker’s narration is engaging and brings the characters to life with multiple voices. 
  • Chloe and the Kaishao Boys. By Mae Coyiuto. Read by Becca Q. Co. 2023. 8.5 hr. Listening Library, DD (9780593663806). Gr. 9-12. Chloe plans to leave Manila behind next year when she travels to the United States for college to learn animation. Before she leaves, her family insists on throwing an epic traditional debut and her dad is working on finding the perfect escort for her. This rom com is taken to new heights with the fun audio narration. 
  • The Davenports. By Krystal Marquis. Read by Joniece Abbott-Pratt. 2023. 12 hr. Listening Library, DD (9780593634783). Gr. 7-10. Olivia, Helen, Amy-Rose and Ruby navigate a world of privilege and passion in 1910 Chicago. The Davenports are one of Chicago’s most highly respected families and are expected to uphold the family legacy while looking towards the future. The narrarator conveys the romance, heartbreak, courage and drama through expertly executed voice variation and tone changes. 
  • The Depths. By Nicole Lesperance. Read by Phoebe Strole. 2022. 9hr. Listening Library, DD (9780593630631). Gr. 9-12. When Addie is dragged along on her mother’s honeymoon, she quickly learns that their island destination isn’t a slice of paradise. Addie needs to discover the island’s secrets before she becomes its next victim. This haunting audio gives a sinister voice to the island and enhances the creep factor.
  • Dinged. By Tommy Greenwald. Read by Ramon De Ocampo and Carly Robins. 2022. 5 hr. Tantor Audio, DD (9798765054598). Gr. 5-8. Caleb follows his NFL superstar father’s path by playing on his high school’s varsity team. Once there, Caleb is forced to witness the risks of repeated concussions. Ramon de Ocampo conveys the emotional journey Caleb struggles with as he decides what place football will have in his future.
  • Fake Dates and Mooncakes. By Sher Lee. Read by Joshua Chang. 2023. 8 hr. Listening Library, DD (9780593680209). Gr. 9-12. Follow a heartwarming story about Dylan Tang, who wants to enter a mooncake-making contest to honor his mother’s memory and save his family’s restaurant. When he starts fake dating the wealthy and handsome Theo Somers things become a bit more complicated. Joshua Chang expertly brings this emotional story to life with his narration.
  • Flowerheart. By Catherine Bakewell. Ready by Morag Sims. 2023. 9.5 hr. HarperTeen, DD (9780063214651). Gr. 10-12. Clara’s magic has always defied her control, but it has never hurt anyone until now. It is only with the help of her former best friend, Xavier, that she may have a chance to stop the damage. Morag Sims gives voice to sweet Clara, and makes it easy to root for Clara while facing the hurtful internal voice of her magic.
  • For Lamb. By Lesa Cline-Ransome. Read by a full cast. 2023. 8 hr. Dreamscape Media, DD (9781666631708). Gr. 8-12. Lamb, an African American teen growing up in Jackson, Mississippi, in the 1930s, agrees to befriend a white girl, never realizing that her actions will make her family a target for lynching.
  • If You Could See the Sun. By Ann Liang. Read by Natalie Naudus. 2022. 9 hr. Harlequin Audio, DD (9781488217968). Gr. 9-12. As a scholarship student at an elite Beijing bording school Alice Sun feels unseen. Alice develops an uncontrollable power of invisibility that turns into a buisness endeavor to raise money for her tuition. Natalie Naudus does a stellar job crafting characters in Liang’s exploration of class differences. 
  • Imogen, Obviously. By Becky Albertalli. Read by Caitlin Kinnunen. 2023. 9.5 hr. HarperCollins Publishers Inc. | Balzer + Bray, DD (9780063045903). Gr. 9-12. Imogen is the world’s best queer ally, so it is no big deal to pretend to be her best friend’s ex when she visits her at college. Imogen finds herself falling in love with the college and someone unexpected. This lighthearted audio eases listeners into exploring deeper and more complex issues. 
  • In Nightfall. By Suzanne Young. Read by Elena Rey. 2023. 11.5 hr. Listening Library, DD (9780593667934). Gr. 9-12. Theo and her brother discover a dark presence that hunts at night when they spend the summer in their father’s hometown of Nightfall. Can Theo and her family survive the town’s murderous curse? Elena Rey’s atomospheric reading highlights the spookiness of Young’s vampire tale. 
  • Kismat Connection. By Ananya Devarajan. Read by Reena Dutt and Vikas Adam. 2023. 8.5 hr.  Harlequin Audio, DD (9781488227509). Gr. 9-12. Madhuri wants to avoid her family’s “curse” of every family member marrying their first love. Madhuri enters into an agreement with her best friend, Arjun, to pretend to date, but their fake relationship leads to real feelings. Dual narrations illustrate the struggles and joy of first love. 
  • *Lei and the Fire Goddess. By Malia Maunakea. Read by Jennifer Robideau. 2023. 8 hr. Listening Library, DD (9780593681244). Gr. 4-6. Lei begs her Tūtū / grandma to do touristy things during a visit to Hawai’i, but tūtū prioritizes family traditions and folklore. Then Lei picks a sacred flower and insults Pele, fire goddess, whose wrath sends her on an impossible adventure. A fast-paced action story with expert pronunciation of ʻŌlelo Hawai’i / Native Hawaiian. 
  • *The Life and Crimes of Hoodie Rosen. By Isaac Blum. Read by Josh Bloomberg. 2022. 6 hr. Listening Library, DD (9780593630037). Gr. 7-10.  Hoodie Rosen’s life is turned upside down when his Orthodox Jewish community relocates to an unwelcoming town. Hoodie’s only solace is Anna-Marie, whose mother, the mayor, opposes Hoodie’s community. Bloomberg expresses humor while exploring the painful topic of religious prejudice.    
  • Lucha of the Night Forest. By Tehlor Kay Mejia. Read by Elena Rey. 2023. 11 hr. Listening Library, DD (9780593613962). Gr. 8-12. Lucha has never understood her ability to evade the deadly monsters in the forest, but people in high places will do anything to control that power. When her sister is caught in the crossfire, Lucha journeys to save her. This tenacious main character is successfully brought to life in the audio by Elena Rey.
  • Miles Morales Suspended. By Jason Reynolds. Read by Guy Lockard and Nile Bullock. 2023. 4 hr. Simon & Schuster Audio, DD (9781797145600). Gr. 7-12. After the previous novel’s events, Miles is serving a day of in-school detention. Even though he just saved the world from the evil wardens, his spidey sense alerts him to a new threat, termites! This lively audio recording follows Miles as he fights to save the world.
  • The Night in Question. By Kathleen Glasgow and liz Lawson. Read by a full cast. 2023. 11 hr. Listening Library, DD (978059368026). Gr. 9-12. Glasgow and Lawson are back with Alice and Iris months after Alice’s best friend Brooke was killed. Can the two figure out who attacked a student at a dance and solve a decades old case at the same time? Narrators Amoss and Linneman drive the mystery at an exciting pace. 
  • Nightbirds. By Kate J. Armstrong. Read by Saskia Maarleveld. 2023. 12.5 hr. Listening Library, DD (9780593664292). Gr, 9-12. There is a prohibition on magic, but the Nightbirds are young women, who still help the rich and desperate access the spells they most desire. The audiobook solidifies the voices of the three Nightbirds, Matilde, Æsa, and Sayer, and their path to uncovering the treachery surrounding them.  
  • Other Side of the Tracks. By Charity Alyse. Read by a full cast. 2022. 12.5 hr. Simon & Schuster Audio, DD (9781797152769). Gr. 7-12. Everyone knows not to cross the tracks between Bayside and Hamilton, but newcomer Zach ignores that. Capri and Justin crossed from Hamilton once, to see their mama perform on Broadway. The long-running feud between the racially divided towns has the teens caught in the middle. Expertly narrated in alternating voices. 
  • Pride and Prejudice and Pittsburgh. By Rachel Lippincott. Read by Natalie Naudus and Shakira Shute. 2023. 8 hr. Simon & Schuster Audio, DD (9781797161617). Gr. 9-12. A spin on a regency romance, Pride and Prejudice and Pittsburgh is a Sapphic time travel story about finding yourself. The main characters, Audrey and Lucy, are brought together when a toss of a coin transports Audrey from 2023 to 1812. The narrators do an excellent job bringing these characters and their emotional journey to life.
  • *Promise Boys. By Nick Brooks. Read by a full cast. 2023. 6.5 hr. Macmillan Audio, DD (9781250877253). Gr. 9-12. When the principal of The Urban Promise Prep School is found dead several students find themselves suspects, as the students begin their own investigation, they find a dark side to the prestigious school. A suspenseful reading by a full cast pulls the listener into the twists and turns of this whodunit. 
  • *The Queens of New York. By E.L. Shen. Read by a full cast. 2023. 8 hr. HarperCollins Publishers Inc. | Quill Tree Books, DD (9780063237988). Gr. 8-11. Best friends and New York natives Jia, Ariel and Everett are inseparable until this summer. Each friend goes on their own summer adventure and readers get to see them become more comfortable with themselves and the world they want to live in. The three narrators each have a unique delivery perfectly reflecting the teen characters. 
  • The Renaissance of Gwen Hathaway. By Ashley Schumacher. Read by Ellie Gossage. 2023. 8 hr. Tantor Audio, DD (9798765070079). Gr. 7-10. Madeline “Gwen” Hathaway’s life on the Renaissance faire circut changes when she meets Arthur who makes her question her life’s rules. Madeline must find the courage to take on a new role at Faire and possibly a new relationship in this audiobook with an heartwarming and sincere narration.
  • Rubi Ramos’s Recipe for Success. By Jessica Parra. Read by Karla Serrato. 2023. 8.5 hr. Dreamscape Media, DD (9781666633634). Gr. 9-12. Rubi Ramos has a recipe for success to make her immigrant parents proud, but when Rubi gets waitlisted for her dream college, she has to change her plans to make herself happy. Karla Serrato’s narration of Parra’s debut novel is hilarious while relatable.   
  • Some Kind of Hate. By Sarah Darer Littman. Read by Michael Crouch and Andrew Eiden. 2023. 9 hr. Blackstone Audio, Inc., DD (9798212170697). Gr. 7-10. Declan had plans of rising to baseball stardom but it is all taken away when he irreparably injures his arm. Declan trades his best friend and practicing Jew, Jake, in for new antisemitic gamer friends.  The audio uses alternating narrators to give voice to both Declan and Jake, truly highlighting how easily hate can warp a life.  
  • Spice Road. By Maiya Ibrahim. Read by Krupa Pattani. 2023. 14 hr. Listening Library, DD (9780593667859). Gr. 9-12. Determined to restore her brother’s tarnished reputation, Imani uses her spice-infused magical abilities to find her presumed dead brother. Imani’s epic journey through the Qalian landscape is easily matched by Krupa Pattani’s stellar narration, which sticks with readers as they deal with frustratingly hot warriors and snarky djinns.
  • Then Everything Happens at Once. By M-E Girard. Read by Aida Reluzco. 2023. 9.5 hr. HarperCollins Publishers Inc. | HarperTeen, DD (9780063206717). Gr. 9-12. Baylee has had a long-time crush on her friend, Freddie, but she has recently started dming Alex. As things heat up with each love interest, COVID sweeps the nation and everything in Baylee’s life is going to change completely. Aida Reluzco crystalizes Baylee’s self-deprecating quirkiness with her narration of this story. 
  • Thieves’ Gambit. By Kayvion Lewis. Read by Jade Wheeler. 2023. 10.5 hr. Listening Library, DD (9780593744796). Gr. 9-12. Ross Quest is the youngest member in a family of master thieves. When her mother is kidnapped during a heist, Ross must join the Thieves’ Gambit, a competition for teenaged thieves, to win and get her mother home. Wheeler’s narration harnesses the action as Ross problem solves challenges and worries about her mother.
  • This Is Not a Personal Statement. By Tracy Badua. Read by Ferdelle Capistrano. 2023. 8.5 hr. HarperCollins Publishers Inc. | Quill Tree Books, DD (9780063217782). Gr. 10-12.  Perla, a sixteen-year-old high school senior, worked her whole life to get into her dream university. When she isn’t accepted, or even waitlisted, she concocts a plan to fake her acceptance and heads off to school. Armed with meticulous spreadsheets Perla tries to cover up her lies in an anxiety-ridden romp. The narrarator brings Perla’s naive and stressful story to life wth good pacing and inflections.
  • Turtles of the Midnight Moon. By María José Fitzgerald. Read by Elena Rey and Frankie Corzio. 2023. 7.5 hr. Listening Library, DD (9780593666777). Gr. 3-6.  An eco-mystery set in a coastal village in Honduras, brings two girls with different lives and languages together to stop sea turtle poachers. Abby and Barana deal with twists, turns and cultural barriers while learning about each other. Read by a trio of narrators, the vivid setting and intense characters combine well with the quick story pace and clear pronunciation.
  • *Warrior Girl Unearthed. By Angeline Boulley. Read by Isabella Star LaBlanc. 2023. 11.5 hr. Macmillan Audio, DD (9781250877277). Gr. 9-12. Perry Firekeeper-Birch just wanted to enjoy her summer. Instead she is forced to complete an internship at her tribe’s museum. There she learns about NAGPRA and repatriation. She and her friends embark on a journey to bring their ancestors home. The narrator brings the story to life with her pronunciation of Ojibwa language and her captivating tone. 
  • *We Deserve Monuments. By Jas Hammonds. Read by Tamika Katon-Donegal. 2022. 10.5 hr. Recorded Books, Inc., DD (9781705069530). Gr. 9-12. Avery’s life changes when she leaves her home in DC to live in a small southern town where she encounters a hostile grandmother, a racist community, and the mystery of her grandfather’s disappearance decades ago. Tamika Katon-Donegal emotionally portrays Avery’s journey in this LGBTQ+ slow-burn mystery. 
  • *What Happened to Rachel Riley? By Claire Swinarski. Read by a full cast. 2023. 6 hr. HarperCollins Publishers Inc. | Quill Tree Books, DD (9780063213128). Gr. 5-8. Anna Hunt just moved to East Middle, where she discovers that former popular girl, Rachel Riley, is now enemy number one. Using a full cast of readers to present a variety of clues in the form of notes, emails, and text messages, Anna digs into the mystery.
  • What Happens After Midnight. By K.L. Walther. Read by Tina Wolstencroft. 2023. 9.5 hr. Tantor Audio, DD (9798350836394). Gr. 9-12. Lily’s senior year is uneventful until a mysterious note invites her to help plan the senior prank. Lily is excited until she learns the prank’s mastermind is her ex-boyfriend; as the two work together, secrets, old hurts, and romantic feelings resurface. Wolstencraft’s fun and playful narration is perfect for romance fans. 
  • Where You See Yourself. By Claire Forrest. Read by Ali Stroker. 2023. 8 hr. Scholastic Audiobooks, DD (9781339004815). Gr. 10-12. Effie Galanos is a senior with a lot on her plate: friendships, school, romance and the dreaded college search. Finding a college is more challenging than usual when Effie focuses on accessibility as she is a wheelchair user. Stoker’s singular narration brings listeners into Effie’s head as she advocates for herself and the future.
  • Whiteout. By Dhonielle Clayton, Tiffany D. Jackson, Nic Stone, et. al. Read by a full cast. 2022. 7.5 hr. HarperCollins Publishers Inc. | Quill Tree Books, DD (9780063088177). Gr. 9-12. Romance finds a way when a snowstorm shuts down Atlanta, and twelve teens band together to pull off an apology to help their friend reconcile with their girlfriend. Multiple narrators weave together artful narrations; in this novel about the holidays, love, and Black Joy. 
  • *Zachary Ying and the Dragon Emperor. By Xiran Jay Zhao. Read by Eric Yang. 2022. 9 hr. Simon & Schuster Audio, DD (9781797158914).Gr. 6-8.  Zachary Ying is just trying to survive school and play his favorite AR video game. Suddenly, his game becomes more reality than augmented reality. He embarks on a journey across China to save his mom and save the world. The narrator expertly brings each character to life with unique voices.

Best Fiction for Young Adults (#BFYA2024) Featured Review: Mascot by Charles Waters and Traci Sorell

  • Mascot
  • by Charles Waters and Traci Sorell
  • Publisher: Charlesbridge
  • Release date: Sept 5, 2023
  • ISBN: 9781623543808

As part of their 8th grade Honors English class, students are asked to consider whether their mascot, an “Indian Brave”, is appropriate and whether it should be changed.  Their assignment: write a research paper and be prepared to debate the topic as partners in class.

Told from the perspectives of the students in the class, their teacher, and community stakeholders, this provides a nuanced discussion of a timely and controversial topic written by #ownvoices authors. Engaging writing with ample white space allows the plot to flow well.  Student voices and perspectives are distinct and realistic, but the language used makes it accessible to teens on the younger end of the age range.
Students who are athletes or are passionate fans, as well as those readers who want to better understand diverse perspectives will connect with this books. Hand this title to young social justice advocates who liked Miles Morales: Suspended by Jason Reynolds or those who want to think deeply about identity and liked Rain Rising by Courtne Comrie.

-Melissa Palmer

Other Nominated Titles

Release Date: February 21, 2023
Release Date: May 23, 2023
Release Date: September 12, 2023

The Selected Lists teams read throughout the year in search of the best titles published in their respective categories. Once a book is suggested (either internally or through the title suggestion form), it must pass through a review process to be designated an official nomination.

Each week, the teams feature a review of one of the officially nominated titles. Additional titles to receive this designation are listed as well. At year’s end, the team will curate a final list from all nominated titles and select a Top Ten.

The Best Fiction for Young Adults Committee appreciates teen feedback as members evaluate the nominated titles. Teen librarians are encouraged to share the List of Potential Nominees under consideration with their patrons and solicit feedback using the link: https://bit.ly/BFYA24TeenFB

Amazing Audiobooks (#AA2024) Featured Review: The Brothers Hawthorne by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

  • The Brothers Hawthorne
  • by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
  • Narrated by Jay Ben Markson
  • Hachette Audio | Little, Brown Young Readers
  • Publication Date: August 29, 2023
  • ISBN:9781668623817

Grayson Hawthorne takes care of his family. Always. When his half-sisters (who know nothing about him) need help, he’s there. Thankfully, Xander and Nash show-up, too, just when Grayson needs them most. Jameson Hawthorne loves to win. When his absent father presents him with the challenge to win back his father’s inherited family residence, he is determined to win, as usual. Avery (the girl who inherited the boys’ grandfather’s fortune in The Inheritance Games) becomes his his accomplice. Tobias Hawthorne prepared his grandsons to solve every puzzle, to protect family at all cost, and – above all else – to win. In the face of new challenges, Grayson and Jameson are prepared to do just that. Except, this time, the Hawthorne brothers aren’t together to do so.   

The mystery of the Hawthorne family seems to never end. New readers will fall in love with Grayson and Jameson and be drawn into the current challenges. Curiosity may lead to reading the previous titles, but isn’t necessary. Jay Ben Markson’s narration keeps readers on the edge of their seats, rooting for Grayson and Jameson as each works to solve the clues to their own challenge, likely to change each of their lives.  


Perfect for readers who read other books in the series or enjoyed One of Us is Lying, Truly Devious, or Firekeeper’s Daughter. Also a good choice for teens who’ve seen and enjoyed the mystery of Knives Out and Glass Onion

-Lysha Thompson

Other Nominated Titles

Release Date: October 18, 2022
Release Date: June 13, 2023
Release Date: March 7, 2023
Release Date: September 6, 2022
Release Date: October 11, 2022
Release Date: June 6, 2023
Release Date: March 14, 2023
Release Date: September 26, 2023
Release Date: March 14, 2023
Release Date: May 2, 2023

The Selected Lists teams read throughout the year in search of the best titles published in their respective categories. Once a book is suggested (either internally or through the title suggestion form), it must pass through a review process to be designated an official nomination.

Each week, the teams feature a review of one of the officially nominated titles. Additional titles to receive this designation are listed as well. At year’s end, the team will curate a final list from all nominated titles and select a Top Ten.

Best Fiction for Young Adults (#BFYA2024) Featured Review: Invisible Son by Kim Johnson

  • Invisible Son
  • by Kim Johnson
  • Publisher: Random House
  • Release date: June 27, 2023
  • ISBN: 9780593482100

Seventeen-year-old Andres Jackson just spent two months incarcerated for a crime he didn’t commit.  A restorative justice program is allowing him to return to his family home in Northeast Portland–and the neighborhood friends who were actually the guilty parties.  However, Andres’ plans for returning to school and establishing his innocence are interrupted by the COVID-19 Pandemic.  Andres now must juggle pandemic losses, family struggles, and the realization that perhaps the truth behind who framed him for stealing is much more complicated than he previously thought.  

This title is a suspenseful and dramatic mystery that slowly builds towards an action packed climax.  The story weaves together important aspects of the historical treatment of Blacks in Portland, contemporary social justice themes, a complicated romance storyline, and a slow burning suspenseful mystery plot.  Readers will connect with Andres’ struggle to learn the truth.

Teen readers drawn to storylines about social justice advocacy and emotion-filled dramas will be drawn to this text. Fans of Nic Stone’s Dear Martin and Dear Justyce, Angie Thomas’s The Hate U Give and Concrete Rose, and Jason Reynolds’ and Brendan Kiely’s All American Boys will enjoy this important story of racial injustice and its intersection with the COVID-19 pandemic.

-Marie LeJeune

Other Nominated Titles

The Selected Lists teams read throughout the year in search of the best titles published in their respective categories. Once a book is suggested (either internally or through the title suggestion form), it must pass through a review process to be designated an official nomination.

Each week, the teams feature a review of one of the officially nominated titles. Additional titles to receive this designation are listed as well. At year’s end, the team will curate a final list from all nominated titles and select a Top Ten.

The Best Fiction for Young Adults Committee appreciates teen feedback as members evaluate the nominated titles. Teen librarians are encouraged to share the List of Potential Nominees under consideration with their patrons and solicit feedback using the link: https://bit.ly/BFYA24TeenFB

Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2024) Featured Review: Insomniacs After School by Makoto Ojiro

  • Insomniacs After School, Vol. 1
  • by Makoto Ojiro
  • VIZ Media
  • Publication Date: March 21, 2023
  • ISBN-13: ‎9781974736577

Ganta Nakami is a grumpy and unfriendly high schooler with few friends but it’s primarily because he’s an insomniac and hardly ever sleeps. This causes him to also fall asleep at school and, while trying to find a good place to nap, he comes across the abandoned astronomy club room. Only it’s not so abandoned when he finds a fellow insomniac, outgoing Isaki Magari. After some forced proximity bonding, they discover that they can get some rest together and become secret friends.

Insomniacs After School, vol. 1 is the beginning of a heartwarming series about two unlikely high schoolers becoming closer as they are plagued by their shared disorder. The story addresses friendship, healing, and the power of dreams while also giving the reader cute banter and lightheartedness. Each character in Insomniacs After School is distinct, not only in their design but also in their personalities, allowing readers from various backgrounds to find a character they resonate with. The magic of the abandoned astronomy tower is captured in detail by Makoto Ojiro, but it is the beautiful renderings of abandoned nighttime streets that really pack an atmospheric and emotional punch.

Those who like stories about teenage friendship and unconventional bonding should read Chion-san of the Cat Temple, also by Makoto Ojiro. For manga readers who like the coming-of-age, finding-yourself vibes, I recommend Blue Period by Tsubasa Yamaguchi. Teens who enjoyed the unlikely friendship and emotional themes of the novel Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell may also enjoy this new manga series.

Cheyenne Sons

Other Nominated Titles

Release Date: June 6, 2023
Release Date: June 6, 2023
Release Date: June 13, 2023
Release Date: September 12, 2023

The Selected Lists teams read throughout the year in search of the best titles published in their respective categories. Once a book is suggested (either internally or through the title suggestion form), it must pass through a review process to be designated an official nomination.

Each week, the teams feature a review of one of the officially nominated titles. Additional titles to receive this designation are listed as well. At year’s end, the team will curate a final list from all nominated titles and select a Top Ten.

Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2024) Nominations Round-Up, Fall

Due to the large number of nominees, not all titles are shown here. See the full list below.

Each quarter, the Selected Lists teams compile the officially nominated titles to date. These titles have been suggested by the team or through the title suggestion form, read by multiple team members, and received approval to be designated an official nomination. At the end of the year, each team will choose the final list of nominations and determine the Selected List’s Top Ten from these titles. For brevity, we have not included official nominations of subsequent volumes in ongoing series in this round-up, only first volumes and standalone titles. Missed our Spring/Summer Round-Up? Check it out here.

–Kelley Blue, GGN Coordinator

Akane-banashi, vol. 1. By Yuki Suenaga. Art by Takamasa Moue. 2023. 200p. VIZ Media, paper, $9.99 (9781974736485). General Adult. 741.5952.

Motivated by revenge, 17-year-old Akane sets out to conquer the world of rakugo, a traditional Japanese storytelling art.

Ay, Mija! My Bilingual Summer in Mexico. By Christine Suggs. Art by the author. 2023. 336p. Little, Brown Ink, paper (9780316591928). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973/920.

Christine recounts a summer trip to Mexico to visit extended family. As a biracial teen who doesn’t speak fluent Spanish, she grapples with faith, sexuality, body image, and cultural identity.

Bomb: The Race to Build–and Steal–the World’s Most Dangerous Weapon. By Steve Sheinkin. Art by Nick Bertozzi. 2023. 256p. Roaring Brook Press, paper, $17.99 (9781250206749). Gr. 4-6. 623.45119.

A graphic adaptation of Sheinkin’s award-winning work of nonfiction, Bomb explores the history, intrigue, and impact of the race to build the world’s first atomic weapons.

A Boy Named Rose. By Gaelle Greniller. Art by the author. 2023. 212p. Fairsquare Comics, paper, $29.99 (9798985927863). General Adult. 741.

1920s Paris: Rose is a boy who wants to dance with the girls at Le Jardin, the cabaret owned by his mother.

Break of Dawn. By Tetsuya Imai. Art by the author. 2023. 528p. Kodansha, paper, $22.99 (9781646518159). General Adult. 741.5952.

In 2038, Yuma and his friends are embroiled in a space mission when his family’s robot is taken over by an alien ship in need of help.

Brooms. By Jasmine Wells. Art by Teo. 2023. 248p. Levine Querido, paper, $18.99 (9781646142682). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973.

In a 1930s infused with magic, broom racing is a sport for the privileged. Billie May, Loretta, and Cheng-Kwan compete in underground races, taking two young witches under their wings.

Catwoman: Lonely City. By Cliff Chiang. Art by the author. 2022. 224p. DC Comics, hardcover, $29.99 (9781779516367). General Adult. 741.5973.

Just out of prison, Selina Kyle sets out on one last, big score with her fellow Gotham villains, but the past won’t let Catwoman escape its claws.

Clock Striker, vol. 1: I’m Gonna Be a Smith! By Issaka Galadima with Frederick L. Jones. Art by Issaka Galadima. 2023. 224p. Rockport Publishers, paper, $13.99 (9780760381571). Gr. 7-9. 741.5952.

A new shonen-style adventure series about a young girl, Smith’s apprentice, in a world where science and engineering are used for combat.

Codex Black, bk. 1: Fire Among Clouds. By Camilo Moncada Lozano. Art by the author. 2023. 320p. IDW, paper, $16.99 (9781684059591). Gr. 7-9. 741.5972.

Itzcacalotl, a teen with wings, and Donaji, a teen with a god-possessed poncho, find themselves in a world of magic and adventure in Mesoamerica.

The Cursed Princess Club, vol. 1. By LambCat. Art by the author. 2023. 288p. Webtoons Unscrolled, paper, $18.99 (9781990259791). Gr. 10-12. 741.5973.

Beloved by her eccentric family, Princess Gwendolyn has never thought of herself as ugly, until her betrothed prince says she is. Enter the Cursed Princess Club!

Daemons of the Shadow Realm, vol. 1. By Hiromu Arakawa. Art by the author. 2023. 208p. Square Enix Manga, paper, $12.99 (9781646091867). General Adult. 741.5952.

Separated at birth, twins Yuru and Asa are unaware of their shared destiny: to rule over powerful daemons and save the world.

Danger and Other Unknown Risks. By Ryan North. Art by Erica Henderson. 2023. 208p. Penguin Workshop, paper, $16.99 (9780593224847). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973.

Marguerite and her talking dog Daisy are on a quest to save the world in this standalone sci-fi romp from the creators of Squirrel Girl.

The Dog Knight, vol. 1. By Jeremy Whitley. Art by Bre Indigo. 2023. 224p. Feiwell & Friends, paper, $14.99 (9781250756725). Gr. 4-6. 741.5973.

Nonbinary middle school student Frankie saves a dog from bullies and is given the chance to become The Dog Knight, a magical pact between humans and dogs.

Dreamer: A Graphic Novel Memoir. By Akim Aliu and Greg Anderson Elysée. Art by Karen De la Vega. 2023. 128p. Graphix / Kaepernick Publishing, paper, $14.99 (9781338787603). Gr. 4-6. 741.5971/B.

Former NHL player Akim Aliu recounts the difficult path he took in his youth to achieve his dream in a sport traditionally dominated by white players.

Dreams, vol. 1: Visions of the Crow. By Wanda John-Kehewin. Art by Nicole Marie Burton and Kielamel Sibal. 2023. 80p. Highwater Press, paper, $21.95 (9781774920459). Gr. 10-12. 741.5973.

High school senior Damon Quinn has a lot to feel angry about, and he doesn’t need a vision-causing crow following him around on top of everything else.

The Faint of Heart. By Kerilynn Wilson. Art by the author. 2023. 304p. Greenwillow Books, paper, $18.99 (9780063116221). Gr. 10-12. 741.5973.

If you could, would you remove your heart? Never feel stress, anger, fear or hurt? June has kept her heart and navigates a world where most have had it removed.

Frontera. By Julio Anta. Art by Jacoby Salcedo. 2023. 240p. HarperAlley, paper, $18.99 (9780063054943). Gr. 10-12. 741.5973.

After unfortunate events, Mateo must rely on a ghost he isn’t even sure exists to complete his journey across the Sonoran Desert to the United States.

The Girl That Can’t Get a Girlfriend. By Mieri Hiranishi. Art by the author. 2023. 208p. VIZ Media, paper, $16.99 (9781974736591). General Adult. B.

The artist details her journey entering the w/w dating scene, covering her first relationship and heartbreak in this humorous and reflective memoir.

Goodbye, Eri. By Tatsuki Fujimoto. Art by the author. 2023. 208p. VIZ Media, paper, $12.99 (9781974738939). General Adult. 741.5952.

Ostracized by his classmates after making an insensitive documentary film, Yuta contemplates suicide. He then meets Eri, a mysterious girl harboring secrets.

Hidden Systems: Water, Electricity, the Internet, and the Secrets Behind the Systems We Use Every Day. By Dan Nott. Art by the illustrator. 2023. 272p. Random House Graphic, paper, $17.99 (9781984896049). Gr. 7-9. 509.

An in-depth look at the technological, historical, and social aspects of water, electricity, and the Internet, demonstrating the urgent need for systems change.

The Hills of Estrella Roja. By Ashley Robin Franklin. Art by the author. 2023. 400p. Clarion Books, paper, $21.99 (9780358567028). Gr. 10-12. 741.5973.

Mari and Kat arrive in Estrella Roja for different reasons, and together they investigate the small town’s strange happenings, developing feelings for one another along the way.

If You’ll Have Me. By Eunnie. Art by the author. 2023. 336p. Viking Books for Young Readers, paper, $17.99 (9780593403235). Gr. 10-12. 741.5973.

Opposites attract when shy, sensitive college freshman Momo meets the cool, popular PG in this sapphic romance.

The Lonesome Hunters, vol. 1. By Tyler Crook. Art by the author. 2023. 120p. Dark Horse Comics, paper, $19.99 (9781506731018). 741.5973.

An old monster hunter and a young teen set out on a supernatural road trip together on a quest to destroy ancient evil forces.

Is Love the Answer? By Uta Isaki. Art by the author. 2023. 256p. Kodansha, paper, $14.99 (9781646516490). General Adult. 741.5952.

First year university student Chika explores the spectrum of asexual identities with the help of new friends, classmates, housemates, and old fashioned research.

The Knight Blooms Behind the Castle Walls, vol. 1. By Masanari Yuduka. Art by the author. 2023. 162p. Seven Seas Entertainment, paper, $13.99 (9781638589563). 741.5952.

Rose leaves her old life behind and takes on the role of squire in her quest to become a knight.

Mage and the Endless Unknown. By SJ Miller. Art by the author. 2023. 152p. Iron Circus Comics, hardcover, $15.00 (9781638991199). General Adult. 741.5973.

Delightful and fanciful turn dark and sinister in this mostly wordless graphic novel about a mage and their companion exploring different lands.

Monstrous: A Transracial Adoption Story. By Sarah Myer. Art by the author. 2023. 272p. First Second, paper, $17.99 (9781250268808). Gr. 10-12. 302 / B.

Korean-American transracial adoptee Sarah works through her anxiety, anger, and identity issues via the world of art and anime fandom.

My Special One, vol. 1. By Momoka Koda. Art by the author. 2023. 200p. VIZ Media, paper, $9.99 (9781974736706). General Adult. 741.5952.

All her friends are fangirls falling for pop idols but never Sahoko! Will that change when an idol wanders into her family’s restaurant?

Night and Dana. By Anya Davidson. Art by the author. 2023. 240p. Graphic Universe, paper, $18.99 (9781728430362). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973.

When horror-loving teens Dana and Lily go too far in a prank at school, they get assigned to a film class at a local community college.

Northranger. By Rey Terciero. Art by Bre Indigo. 2023. 240p. HarperAlley, paper, $18.99 (9780063007383). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973.

Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey meets American Gothic meets Heartstopper in this romantic and atmospheric retelling set in rural Texas.

The Ojja-Wojja: A Horror Mystery, or Whatever. By Magdalene Visaggio. Art by Jenn St-Onge. 2023. 192p. HarperTeen, paper, $13.99 (9780062852427). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973.

Best friends Val and Lanie dig too deep into their town’s folklore, unleashing an ancient demon. Now it’s up to them to save their community from certain destruction.

The Out Side: Trans & Nonbinary Comics. By The Kao, Min Christiansen and David Daneman (editors). Various artists. 2023. 176p. Andrews McMeel Publishing, paper, $16.99 (9781524880125). General Adult. 741.

A collection of mini-comics assembled by trans and nonbinary creators featuring vibrant and affirming autobiographical stories about identity.

Paper Planes. By Jennie Wood. Art by Dozerdraw. 2023. 216p. Maverick, paper, $14.99 (9781952303548). Gr. 7-9. 741.5952.

Two former friends are sent to camp after an incident at school. As the summer unfolds, will they be able to fix their relationship?

Pearl of the Sea. By Anthony Silverson, Raffaella Delle Donne and Willem Samuel. Art by Willem Samuel. 2023. 168p. Catalyst Press, paper, $19.95 (9781946395740). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973.

Pearl works many odd jobs to help her father. One day while diving in a restricted area, she befriends a sea creature with secrets.

Poison Ivy, vol. 1: The Virtuous Cycle. By G. Willow Wilson. Art by Marcio Takara. 2023. 200p. DC Comics, hardcover, $24.99 (9781779518491). General Adult. 741.5973.

Having lost most of her powers, Pamela Isley leaves Gotham and Harley Quinn behind in a quest for vengeance for herself and the planet Earth.

The Princess and the Grilled Cheese Sandwich. By Deya Muniz. Art by the author. 2023. 256p. Little, Brown Ink, paper, $17.99 (9780316538725). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973.

Lady Camembert disguises herself as a man in order to inherit her father’s title without marrying, but falling for beautiful activist Princess Brie wasn’t part of her plan.

Project Nought. By Chelsea Furedi. Art by the author. 2023. 336p. Clarion Books, paper, $18.99 (9780358381693). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973.

Teenager Ren is yanked forward in time to 2133 for a time travel exchange program where everything seems good… until it seems it isn’t.

Roaming. By Mariko Tamaki. Art by Jillian Tamaki. 2023. 444p. Drawn & Quarterly, paper, $34.99 (9781770464339). General Adult. 741.5971.

During their first year of college, high school friends Dani and Zoe meet up in NYC for a long-planned adventure, but Dani’s classmate Fiona interrupts their happy reunion.

The Sea in You. By Jessi Sheron. Art by the author. 2023. 210p. Iron Circus, paper, $15.00 (9781638991113). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973.

This modern graphic retelling of The Little Mermaid ventures into dark new waters while maintaining the timeless themes of transformation, empowerment, and true love.

Season of the Bruja, vol. 1. By Aaron Durán. Art by Sara Soler. 2023. 128p. Oni Press, paper, $19.99 (9781549308161). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973.

A young bruja works to keep paranormal beings and magic safe, but loses her mentor and grandmother to a religious sect determined to destroy her.

Side Effects. By Ted Anderson. Art by Tara O’Connor. 2022. 112p. Aftershock Comics, paper, $17.99 (9781956731088). Gr. 9-12. 741.5952.

Starting college is overwhelming for Hannah. When she begins a medication prescribed by the school psychologist, she ends up experiencing side effects best left in superhero comics.

Stars in Their Eyes. By Jessica Walton. Art by Aśka. 2023. 224p. Graphix, paper, $15.99 (9781338818796). Gr. 7-9. 741.5973.

Maisie, an above-the-knee amputee, meets Ollie at her first ever FanCon, and the two bond quickly over movies, shows, and comics.

The Summer Hikaru Died, vol. 1. By Mokumokuren. Art by the author. 2023. 180p. Yen Press, paper, $15.00 (9781975360542). General Adult. 741.5952.

High school student Yoshiki has an unsettling feeling about his lifelong friend Hiakaru. Though he looks, talks, and acts the same, Hikaru is not Hikaru anymore.

Tegan and Sarah: Junior High. By Tegan Quin and Sara Quin. Art by Tillie Walden. 2023. 304p. Farrar, Straus & Giroux, paper, $14.99 (9780374313029). Gr. 4-6. 741.5971.

A fictionalized version of twin musicians Tegan & Sara Quin’s early teen years, featuring new friends and new tests to the bonds of sisterhood.

Tiger, Tiger, vol. 1. By Petra Erika Nordlund. Art by the author. 2023. 320p. Seven Seas Entertainment, paper, $19.99 (9781638584193). Gr. 10-12. 741.94897.

Ludovica is a sheltered royal who yearns to study sea sponges, so she steals her brother’s identity and sets sail, though the high seas hold much more than she anticipated.

True Beauty, vol. 1. By Yaongyi. Art by the author. 2022. 288p. Webstoon Unscrolled, paper, $18.99 (9781990259890). 741.5951.

Jugyeong Lim navigates self-esteem and a love triangle through her love for (and reliance on) the art of makeup in the first print volume of this popular web series.

Two Tribes. By Emily Bowen Cohen. Art by the author. 2023. 256p. Heartdrum, paper, $15.99 (9780062983589). Gr. 4-6. 741.5973.

Mia is both Jewish and Muscogee, but living with her mom and stepfather means she only knows her Jewish heritage, so plans to secretly visit her father.

Welcome to Demon School! Iruma-kun, vol. 1. By Osamu Nishi. Art by the author. 2023. 200p. Vertical Comics, paper, $12.95 (9781647292423). General Adult. 741.5952.

After Iruma Suzuki’s parents sell his soul to a demon, he must do his best to survive high school in the underworld.