Examining my "Looking Forward" posts for 2010 releases it seems I neglected to mention any YA books except for Neil Gaiman's The Tales of Odd. That's not too surprising considering I'm far from an expert on YA releases as it would be too much to keep up with both those and adult releases, but I always read a few every year and for the most part they are every bit as enjoyable as adult fiction. In fact many so called adult books would probably fit just as well in the YA category such as Boneshaker by Cherie Priest and Joe Haldeman's Marsbound. Now the books mentioned below may not be me thinking too far outside the box, but they are all books worth pointing out from accomplished and imaginative authors who are for the first time working in the YA arena.
The Prince of Mist by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
Publisher: Little Brown | Release Date: May 4th
Zafon's name is enough to put this on the top of my list unequivocally. He also has a couple other YA books that will be seeing English publication over the next few years.
A mysterious house harbors an unimaginable secret . . . It’s wartime, and the Carver family decides to leave the capital where they live and move to a small coastal village where they’ve recently bought a home. But from the minute they cross the threshold, strange things begin to happen. In that mysterious house there still lurks the spirit of Jacob, the previous owners’ son, who died by drowning.
With the help of their new friend Roland, Max and Alicia Carver begin to explore the suspicious circumstances of that death and discover the existence of a mysterious being called The Prince of Mist—a diabolical character who has returned from the shadows to collect on a debt from the past. Soon the three friends will find themselves caught up in an adventure of sunken ships and an enchanted stone garden, which will change their lives forever.
Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi
Publisher: Little Brown | Release Date: May 5th
Ship Breaker is Bacigalupi's YA debut, but this is also the start to a series. As with The Windup Girl this is set in a dystopian future where resources are scarce and everyday is a challenge. I love the cover art as it sets the tone for a work by Bacigalupi well.
In a shanty town in America’s Gulf Coast region, 100 years in the future, where grounded oil tankers are dissembled for parts, Nailer, a teenage boy, searches for copper wiring to make quota and live another day. But out on the blue ocean, Nailer can see the new hightechnology clipper ships sailing the open waves, and he dreams of a better life, if only he can figure out a way to get there.
When an accident leads Nailer to discover an exquisite clipper ship and its lone survivor beached during a recent hurricane, he must choose between his dreams and doing the right thing. The decision will lead him on an adventure that could cost him his life—or end up saving it.
Kid Vs. Squid by Greg van Eekhout
Publisher: Bloomsbury | Release Date: May 11th
van Eekhout's shorts certainly lend themselves to a YA audience. In fact this story has its impetuous from a piece of flash fiction he wrote a few years back. Plus I'm a sucker for Atlantis related ficton. This must stem from all the In Search of episodes I watched as a child narrated by Leonard Nimoy.
The citizens of Atlantis are stuck selling cotton candy on the boardwalk, and only our hero can help
Thatcher Hill is bored stiff of his summer job dusting the fake mermaids and shrunken heads at his uncle’s seaside Museum of Curiosities. But when a mysterious girl steals an artifact from the museum, Thatcher’s summer becomes an adventure that takes him from the top of the ferris wheel to the depths of the sea. Following the thief, he learns that she is a princess of the lost Atlantis. Her people have been cursed by an evil witch to drift at sea all winter and wash up on shore each summer to an even more terrible fate—working the midway games and food stands on the boardwalk. Can Thatcher help save them before he, too, succumbs to the witch’s curse?
Are there any other YA books we should be looking out for?
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