YA fiction (young adult) has become increasingly popular, especially during lockdown when people had more time to read. So, if you are looking for a page-turning YA series to read, take a look at some of these series below and see if any tickle your fancy.
A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J Maas
Probably one of the most famous and read series in the fantasy genre, this series may set reading standards for other series. The plot follows a similar one to Beauty and the Beast with a jaw-dropping plot twist in the second book. Every character is uniquely different from Feyre, the brave and beautiful female protagonist who is torn between two worlds, two lovers. Feyre and her companions face incredible evil and life-threatening dangers to ensure that the land of the Fae stays safe and doesn’t fall into the hands of a mad king. The fourth installation of this series was released in 2018, A Court of Frost and Starlight. The fifth book was released in February 2021 and is called A Court of Silver Flames, the storyline continues, however, it is from different character’s perspective. With the title of the new novel is a little different from the rest, what does this mean for the series? With the constant change in plot and incredibly intriguing characters, these are excellent books to become emersed in.
A Cruel Prince by Holly Black
First impressions are always: boy and girl hate each other, then they need each other to survive and slowly fall in love. However, there is more to this series than just a typical trope, it is a lot more complicated and that is why this series is a must-read. The first book, The Cruel Prince, was published in 2018 and follows the life of Jude Duarte. Jude, a mortal girl, has to survive living in the Fae realm with her family. However, Jude quickly learns that being a human among the Fae is dangerous and has to quickly adapt to a life of torment and survival. Although, that is quite hard to do when she has captured the attention of a cruel prince, Cardan Greenbrair, who will stop at nothing to make her life hell. After sudden and shocking events in the first book, the two protagonists must learn to get along and restore peace in the realm, making sure that the crown does not get into the wrong hands. A must-read for those who are obsessed with a love-hate relationship between characters and love a good character arc.
Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
The trilogy that paves the way for the rest of Bardugo’s books is a must-read series for those looking for back-to-back action and page-turning drama. The main character, Alina, is thrown into a world of power and greed when a life threatening occurrence unravels a secret power in her. Not only is the power new, three formidable love interests come crashing into her life. The Darkling, an influential force in Ravka who forms a possessive obsession over her, and Nikolai, a pirate prince with a genius mind and a heart of gold. Let’s not forget about her lifelong friend, Mal, who sticks by her side throughout her journey. As Alina learns that her powers are not being used for good, she begins a life-changing journey that includes discovering the true extent of her powers, forming alliances and saving Ravka from a dark evil. These need to be read carefully as there is a lot of detail to take in and a lot of links to her other novels. There is also a lot of characters plotting and storyline happening, readers cannot aimlessly read, so don’t skim over all the words on one page because you will be confused about what’s happening on the next.
Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard
A world where the colour of a person’s blood determines who someone is and their place in society, if their blood is red then they’re seen as a peasant and not worth anything. However, if their blood is silver then they are seen as royalty and should be treated as such. Mare has lived her whole life in poverty, stealing to provide a living for her family. One day, she steals from a mysterious boy and the next she is being summoned to the palace to work as a maid. However, after a sudden event, Mare learns that while she had red blood she has powers that only a silver could possess. From this point onwards, Mare must quickly adapt to the vicious ways that a royal court works as her life and facade hang in the balance. The more books in this series that you read through, the more you realise that Mare is not as alone as she thought she was and that some characters have hidden agendas that you may not have noticed in the earlier books.
Caraval by Stephanie Garber
A game that will changes someone’s life forever, a game that once they have started they have to finish. The Caraval is a week-long game that travels around the world and that anyone can enter, as long as they have a ticket. When Scarlett’s sister, Tella, goes missing Scarlett and her new companion, Julian, must enter the game to find her. Throughout the week, Scarlett learns how to play the game and finds clues that lead her to her sister. However, there are people within the Caraval that also want to win and will do anything to make sure they do. Although, it’s not just winning that some want to do but learn the real identity of the Caraval Master, Legend. In the second novel, Legendary, after Scarlett has won and fallen in love, she moves on with her life or at least hopes to. When Tella enters the Caraval for a second time, her life is once again in the hands of the game as she finds more clues as to why her mother went missing when she was young. If you are a sucker for romance, mystery and page-turning drama, this series is a must-read and you will be left wondering if these girls will ever find the life they want?
A Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas
If you cannot tell by this list, Maas is the queen of YA fiction and one of my all-time favourites. With eight books to read, there are more plot twists in this whole series than in any other book series I have read. Celaena is only 18 years old and imprisoned within the salt mines for being an assassin. Although, one day Celaena is offered a deal by the crown prince, Dorian, that if she competes on his behalf in a dangerous trial of challenges then she will be granted freedom. Taking the deal, Celaena enters the tournament and realises that all the other contestants are criminals and are competing for other officials within the royal court. However, not all the officials are there to play fair and while Celaena is competing in a tournament she is also trying to defeat a dark evil that lurks within the castle walls. Now you may be wondering how this plot stretches over all these books. Well, you have to read them to discover the mindblowing plot twist that will take your breath away and delve you deep into an intense fight for a crown.
Three Dark Crowns by Kendra Blake
Three sisters, three menacing abilities but there is only room for one to rule. Normally, the crown is passed down to the oldest, however, the crown can only be passed onto the sister that proves that they have the strength and power to possess it. This can only mean one thing, the sisters have to fight to the death. Arsinoe, who lives in Wolf Spring with the naturalists, was born as a naturalist and is supposed to have power over the earth and animals but you have to read the whole series to find out the truth of Arisnoe’s powers. Miabella, an elemental, has powers over the elements and is most powerful out of the sisters and while that may be the perfect reason to go for the throne, Mirabella has no interest in ruling, much like Arsinoe. Lastly, Katharine, a poisoner who is supposed to be able to ingest the most murderous poisons and not feel a thing. However, this is something that Katherine has to develop over time and soon the journey for power takes over her mind and she becomes hungry for her sister’s blood. Read all four of the books to find out which sister ends up ruling and who faces a deadly destiny.
Serpent and Dove by Shelly Mahurin
To dabble in any sort of magic in Cerasine is illegal and those who do will be sentenced to death. Lou may seem like a homeless outcast that survives by playing dirty among the streets, however, she has a secret and a dangerous one at that. Reid is a highly respected member of Chasseur, trained to kill any living being that possesses magic. When an unexpected event takes place, Reid and Lou are tied together by a vow, and while their social statuses and biology pose as a hateful barrier between the two they both must learn to get along to defeat a common enemy, Morgane. Throughout the series, the two face many challenges and put themselves in grave danger to defeat Morgane, the head of a witch clan. Will they learn to love one another? Will they defeat Morgane once and for all? Will society ever accept a bond between humans and witches? The only way you will find out those answers is if you read the series!
All images are from Goodreads.com
Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
The second Bardugo series to make it on the list and another absolutely genius book series. A group of misfits, also known as The Crows, are ruled by a young man named, Kaz Brekker. Kaz owns a gambling club in Ketterdam called The Crows Club and is respected, by some, by the patrons within the city. However, being a crook and owning a gambling club comes with having a few enemies, those enemies being in high places. So, when Kaz and his crew are called in to pull off a well-paid heist, well they just cannot refuse. Although the job is much more dangerous than they thought and there is more at stake than the needs of greedy men, the crew has to pull out more tricks from their sleeves than they have done so in their entire life. This heist means getting over their pasts and not straying from the path. Whether they manage to complete the heist or not is something that you will have to find out. However, the heart-stopping ending to the first book sets the tempo for the page-turning events that happen in the second book. These books are also set within the Grishaverse, the same as Shadow and Bone, so there may be some characters from Shadow and Bone that pop up…
King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo
What is this? The third Bardugo book on this list? Clearly, this is a sign that you need to be reading Leigh Bardugo’s books. In Bardugo’s latest series, readers have an insight into Nikolai and Zoya’s perspectives. After the events that happened in Ruin and Rising (the third book in the Shadow and Bone series), Nikolai is stepping into his role as king and trying to rebuild Ravka. However, the war has had a lasting effect on Nikolai (read the Shadow and Bone series) and he was not the boy he was before, something dark and monstrous lurks within him. While trying to find a solution to his beastly problem, he also faces enemies from all around Ravka’s borders. This duology is should be read after Shadow and Bone, as well as after the Six of Crows series, and takes readers on Nikolai and Zoya’s journey to self-discovery. Also, Bardugo fan’s favourite character, Nina, returns and takes on a new role as a spy for Nikolai, corrupting some of Ravka’s worst enemies.