Amazing Audiobooks (#AA2024) Featured Review: Spice Road by Maiya Ibrahim

  • Spice Road
  • by Maiya Ibrahim
  • Narrated by Krupa Pattani
  • Books on Tape | Listening Library
  • Publication Date: January 24, 2023
  • ISBN: 9780593667859

Misra tea has the power to awaken magic hidden within. However, the Council closely guards its use and severely punishes those who violate its rules. Misra misuse can lead to magical obsession and death if the Council doesn’t get to you first. Imani shows her loyalty to the Council by strictly following their Misra rules. She is determined to prove her worth as a Shield and is different from her deceased Misra-obsessed older brother. When Imani uncovers evidence that her brother may still be alive and using Misra, she takes the opportunity to prove her loyalty by returning him to the Council. Imani and a group of Council-selected Shields embark on the expansive journey to find her brother. The farther Imani gets from home, the more she learns about her world and Misra, which calls into question everything she thought was true. 


This sweeping journey draws readers into a new sandswept world filled with ghouls and snarky djinns. There is something for every reader in this adventurous romantic fantasy.  Pattani’s narration takes this gorgeous story to new heights. She successfully helps readers navigate this new world and compels them forward. It is an audiobook that will hold listeners attention for just one more minute, followed by one more. Spice Road is perfect for fans of Sarah J. Maas and Roshani Chokshi.

-Sarah Carpenter

Other Nominated Titles

Release Date: November 22, 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 (#AA2024) Featured Review: Flowerheart by Catherine Bakewell

  • Flowerheart
  • by Catherine Bakewell
  • Narrated by Morag Sims
  • HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. | HarperTeen
  • Publication Date: March 14, 2023
  • ISBN: 9780063214651

Clara has never been able to truly control her magic, and while it creates great inconveniences for her, it has never hurt anyone, until now. When her latest magical test fails miserably and those in charge threaten to bind her magic, Clara’s magic lashes out and curses her father. Clara must find a way to heal the flowers that are growing out of her father’s insides before she loses her magic and is unable to fix it. She finds an unlikely ally with her ex-best friend Xavier, who offers a deal that will benefit them both. 

This fantasy blends unique magical abilities with an engaging plot that keeps readers discovering something new every step of the way. Morag Sims brings the whimsy of this book to light and her voice balances Clara’s sweetness with her magic’s sourness. While this audiobook is a comforting romp through a new magical world, it takes on mental health issues and anxiety in a gentle yet realistic way. It is a contemporary cousin to Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones and will also appeal to fans of A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer. This audiobook will delight high fantasy fans who love romance mixed in with their new magical worlds. 

-Sarah Carpenter

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) Featured Review: Danger and Other Unknown Risks by Ryan North and Erica Henderson

  • Danger and Other Unknown Risks
  • by Ryan North and Erica Henderson
  • Penguin Random House / Penguin Workshop
  • Publication Date: April 4 2023
  • ISBN-13: 9780593224823

In Danger and Other Unknown Risks Marguerite and her talking dog Daisy are on a quest to save their post-apocalyptic world. At midnight on January 1, 2000, the apocalypse came in the form of magic, and the world is now split into different realms where the laws of physics and the way magic works are different. Marguerite has been tasked by her uncle with finding three totems so he can perform a powerful spell that will save the world from its current magical instability. As Marguerite and Daisy try to save the world, they meet a variety of people along the way and have an adventure all their own. Will they succeed in obtaining the items they need to save the world?

Danger and Other Unknown Risks is a fun, dystopian adventure full of magic, a talking dog, and humor with a likable, quirky protagonist. The world building is fun and interesting and provides a unique magical future that the reader can get invested in. The illustrations are fun and colorful, but also include realistic body sizes, and a variety of different realms. While the art may look cartoony, readers are in for a high-stakes, perilous ride. 

Danger and Other Unknown Risks is a great read for fans of dystopian adventures or D&D stories. Fans of North and Henderson’s previous work together on The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl will gravitate towards this standalone volume from the familiar team. Teens who like offbeat shows like Adventure Time or Loki will also enjoy this book.

—Kaileigh Oldham

Other Nominated Titles

Release Date: March 1, 2023
Release Date: February 14, 2023
Release Date: June 13, 2023
Release Date: July 4, 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.