#YearofYA Goes Graphic April 2019

April 2019 - Graphic Novels.png

We always love bringing Graphic Novels in the spotlight with #YearofYA! So much so, that graphic novels seem to sneak into our choices each month, for any topic!


It’s been awhile since we’ve had a whole month around graphic novels, so we felt it was time to take a look at some of the new titles, series, and authors/illustrators that have emerged in the last couple years.


2018/early 2019 has seen some graphics get well-deserved attention in Hey Kiddo as National Book Award finalist, The Unwanted earning YALSA excellence in nonfiction & the Sibert Honor, and Check Please! As a Morris finalists. It would be shameful to miss reading these stories, delivered in a format that is becoming increasingly popular with young readers.


What’s amazing about the ongoing growth of Graphic Novels is how many unique stories are being told through this format: retellings of favorite YA texts like Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson, glimpses into history like Anne Frank’s Diary: The Graphic Adaptation, and informational products that teach readers everything from the journey of a refugee, to the struggles of mental illness, and how to better understand using pronouns and gender identity. Art is a powerful way to communicate stories – both fictional and true.


Enjoy this month – if you are a reader of GNs already, share some of your favorite in the comments or on twitter using #YearofYA! And if this is not a format you typically explore, grab a story that sounds interesting to you and see how it goes!


As always with #YearofYA, we pick the theme (in this case, a format!) and YOU choose the books!


Lists & Resources:

YALSA Great Graphic Novels {links to many lists}

YALSA Great Graphic Novels for Teens 2019

YALSA Great Graphic Novels for Teens 2019 nominees (even more titles to explore!)

YALSA Great Graphic Novels for Teens 2018

Chicago Public Library Best Comics & Graphic Novels for Teens 2018

Epic Reads 29 Must-Have Graphic Novels for your Collection

Book Riot Teen Graphic Novel Releases Aug-Dec 2018

Book Riot Teen Graphic Novel Releases Jan-March 2019

Comics and Graphic Novels for Reluctant Readers


Award Winners! #YearofYA March 2019

Award Winners - March 2019


Booknerds everywhere get excited (and frustrated!) when it’s book award season! Now that the ALA Youth Media Awards have been announced, we figured we’d celebrate award winners – from ALA along with other favorites. And don’t worry if your favorite didn’t get the love you feel it deserved… we might have a question for that! As always with our themes, you have the freedom to pick titles that interest YOU.


Below are just a few of our favorite award lists! If you want to share more and read from something different, send ideas our way!


ALA Youth Media Awards

Book Shimmy Awards by EPIC Reads

CYBLIS awards – Children and YA Bloggers awards!

Goodreads Award Winners

National Book Awards

A Celebration of African-American YA | #YearofYA February ’19


There is a beautiful book called 28 Days: Moments in Black History that Changed the World by Charles R. Smith Jr. that should be in every library, every classroom, every month of the year.


Perhaps just as necessary now than ever, young people need to find inspiration in the courage of generations before us, to learn about lived experiences vastly different (or incredibly similar!) to their own, to reflect on what it means to be a bystander, versus an ally, versus an upstander.


Stories like the short biographies found in 28 Days provide readers with those essential windows, mirrors, and sliding glass doors that Dr. Rudine Sims Bishop has so famously referred to – and while biographies are a fitting way to connect and reflect during Black History Month, #YearofYA wants to celebrate the incredible works of African-American young adult authors.


Below are lists of books written by African American authors:


Additional helpful resources:

Reading While White



Mollee’s Must-Reads

The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon

Dear Martin by Nic Stone

Anything by Jason Reynolds


Tavia’s Must-Reads

Any and Everything by Jason Reynolds (All American Boys is my favorite)

How It Went Down by Kekla Magoon

Allegedly By Tiffany D. Jackson


January 2019: #YearofYA Blinded me with SciFi!

#YearofYA Blinded Me With SciFi! .jpg


Let’s start with defining SciFi… as it stands alone and not an “and/or” to the Fantasy genre!

Well, the best way I’ve been able to determine is through this helpful article from Writer’s Digest: The Difference Between Science Fiction and Fantasy

So many great examples that I would immediately to go as SciFi (hello! Star Wars!) but they are in fact Fantasy! *mindblown*

Well we’ve done our fair share of Fantasy reading here over 3 seasons of #YearofYA (another mindblowing fact!) so let’s try to keep it in the SciFi boundaries!

Unfortunately, many lists include both so it’s up to you to decide which genre it fits in! Come prepared to defend its rightful place in SciFi when we chat in January on Tuesday the 22nd at 9pm EST/6pm PST! *note, new time!


Some standout titles include:

  • Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles) by Marissa Meyer
  • Mortal Engines by Philip Reeve (in theaters now)
  • Scythe (series) By Neal Shusterman
  • An Absolutely Remarkable Thing by Hank Green
  • Shatter Me (series) By Tahereh Mafi
  • A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle
  • Wool by Hugh Howey
  • Monster of Men (Chaos Walking Series) by Patrick Ness

And some more lists to explore:

BookRiot’s 100 Must-read YA SciFi

Penguin Random House Teen SciFi List

Most Anticipated SciFi of 2018 from B&N

EpicReads YA SciFi Recommendations

Brightly’s Best SciFi & Fantasy of 2018

GoodReads best of 2018 YA SciFi & Fantasy

19 Best Sci Fi for Teens from Best Sci Fi Books.com

#YearofYA Best Of 2018!

Did you miss our December chat where we recounted our favorite 2018 reads?! Feel free to answer any of the following questions on Twitter using #YearofYA to connect with other YA readers! We are curating everyone’s BEST OF answers and we’ll be sharing that list on here too!


Our most ferocious reader, BJ Neary (@bjneary) shares her 2018 titles in the chart below! She’s a wonderful friend to follow on Twitter or Goodreads if you want to know more about a book… she’s probably read it!


I am on Goodreads as bjneary – follow my books & reviews!!!

Faves on 2018 LISTS 2018 PUB LOVED liked
Kingdom of Ash Kingdom of Ash/S Maas
The Prince & the Dressmaker/Wang The Prince & the Dressmaker/Wang
The Queen of Air & Darkness/C Clare The Queen of Air & Darkness/C Clare
The Storyteller/T Chee The Storyteller/T Chee
Sunny/Reynolds Sunny/Reynolds
The Lost Sisters/Black The Lost Sisters/Black
Wildcard/M Lu Wildcard/M Lu
Bridge of Clay/M Zusak Bridge of Clay/M Zusak
The Gilded Wolves/R Chokshi The Gilded Wolves/R Chokshi
Odd One Out/N Stone Odd One Out/N Stone
Love, Hate & Other Filters/Ahmed Love, Hate & Other Filters/Ahmed
Hey Kiddo/J Krosoczka Hey Kiddo/J Krosoczka
The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats & Piracy/M Lee The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats & Piracy/M Lee
Meet Cute/J L Armentrout Meet Cute/J L Armentrout
Pride/I Zoboi Pride/I Zoboi
Truly Devious/M Johnson Truly Devious/M Johnson
A Reaper at the Gates/S Tahir A Reaper at the Gates/S Tahir
Smoke in the Sun/R Adied Smoke in the Sun/R Adied
Bruja Born/Z Cordova Bruja Born/Z Cordova
Monday’s Not Coming/T Jackson Monday’s Not Coming/T Jackson
Bright We Burn/K White
Traitor’s Game/J Neilsen
A Court of Frost & Starlight/S Maas
Puddin’/J Murphy Puddin’/J Murphy
The Cruel Prince/H Black The Cruel Prince/H Black
Sadie/C Summers Sadie/C Summers
Dance of Thieves/M Pearson Dance of Thieves/M Pearson
I Have Lost My Way/G Forman I Have Lost My Way/G Forman
Fresh Ink/L Giles Fresh Ink/L Giles
The Poet X/E Acevedo The Poet X/E Acevedo
Dread Nation/J Ireland Dread Nation/J Ireland
Leah on the Offbeat/B Albertalli Leah on the Offbeat/B Albertalli
Emergency Contact/Choi Emergency Contact/Choi
Children of Blood and Bone/T Adeyemi Children of Blood and Bone/T Adeyemi
Blood Water Paint/J McCullough Blood Water Paint/J McCullough
The Way You Make Me Feel/M Goo The Way You Make Me Feel/M Goo
A Girl Like That/T Bhathena A Girl Like That/T Bhathena
Hero at the Fall/A Hamilton Hero at the Fall/A Hamilton


#YearofYA | End of the Year 2018!

#YearofYA _ End of the Year Celebration!


Ever feel like there just isn’t enough time to get to all the books you hoped to in one year?!

Push through this year’s finish line by carving out time for your TOP TBR’s of 2018!

Or maybe you DID read all you hoped… but have time for a few more! Check out these “best of” lists for ideas to round out an amazing year of reading!

Join us to chat at 8pm EST/5pm PST on Thursday December 27th!