Random (but not really)

Saturday, December 29, 2018

The Books of 2018: YA

This was a good year to catch up on some series I’d fallen behind on. I also came across two fabulous books by a new author. There are some great books here.

The Lady Trent series by Marie Brennan

Voyage of the Basilisk (2015)(8/10), In the Labyrinth of Drakes (2016)(8/10), Within the Sanctuary of Wings (2017)(9/10)

I’d had the Lady Trent series on my wish list for a couple years. I finally got the first book, and used gift cards for the next several, then just broke down and bought the last.

This series has some of THE most beautiful covers I have every seen. But beside that, it’s a marvelous story, set in a universe that is similar to the world after the Napoleonic wars, but still quite different, since the world has dragons.

Lady Trent grew up wanting to know about dragons, but education wasn’t something girls were truly allowed to have, since they were expected to marry and breed more ladies and gentlemen. This is the story of how Lady Trent became a natural historian, traveled the world, and generally turned things upside down in her search for knowledge about dragons.

It’s delightful and marvelous and doesn’t shy away from subjects that are of importance to female adventurers.

Maggie Stiefvater

The Raven King (2016)(9/10) [Raven Boys]

I’d pre-ordered this book, and then put off reading it because I didn’t really want to series to end. So I decided I should just re-read the entire series so it’d all be fresh in my mind when I read the final book.

I really adore this story. The main characters are teenagers, four of whom go to an elite private school, and one of whom is the daughter of a psychic who lives in a house of psychics, yet who has no psychic ability of her own.

My favorite character of the series ended up being the character I didn’t like at all in the first book. Ronan is extremely complicated, and was struggling with discovering his father’s body and the inheritance of his family.

Yeah, the other characters are also wonderful, but I adore Ronan.

Mackenzi Lee

The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue (2017)(8/10), The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy (2018)(9/10)

The first book is a YA coming of age. Monty is sent on a Grand Tour with his best friend Percy (with whom he has been in love for years) and told that if he can’t straighten himself up, he shouldn’t bother to come home, since his father has a new heir.

I had trouble getting into the first book, because Monty initially felt like a spoiled brat, until you discover just why he drinks and carouses so much.

The second book is about Felicity, Monty’s sister, who wants more than anything to become a doctor; except that women aren’t allowed to become doctors or surgeons.

It’s also a story of misunderstandings and acceptance and fighting for what you want.

Both books are wonderful.

Lish McBride

Freaks & Other Family (2016)(8/10), Firebug (2014) (8/10), Pyromantic (2017)(9/10)

I’ve loved everything I’ve read by Lish McBride, yet I’d get a new book and I’d hold off reading it because OMG WHAT IF I DON’T LIKE IT??!!!

Reader, I am an idiot.

Freaks & Other Family follows the characters from the Necromancer series.

Firebug is a series following Ava, who has the unfortunate power of being able to set things on fire. This is unfortunate not just because a failure of control means she can burn down her home, but because the women in control of the local supernaturals likes to use Firebugs to punish those who don’t follow her orders.

It’s technically the same world as the Necromancer series, but there is no overlap of characters.

It is lovely however.

The Books of 2018

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