Fantasy YA Recommendations

Amy, a student undertaking her work experience with Hillingdon Libraries has written a second post for the Hillingdon Libraries blog, this time sharing her favourite fantasy reads:

‘Looking for some magical, action-packed, brilliant YA reads? Well, you’re in the right place! I’m back with a list of my top 5 favourite YA books!

  1. Wild Magic by Cat Weatherill

wild magic

Alright, this might be a bit of a cheat one, since I’m not entirely sure what age category Wild Magic would fit into, but I’m going to recommend it nonetheless because it’s an amazing book that deserves more recognition. I first discovered this book at the library, where I borrowed it on playaway (which is basically a portable audiobook.) The audiobook was so incredibly good, and I found myself utterly absorbed by Cat’s masterful storytelling. Every time I see it in the library I always pick it up and give it a listen, and you should too! After falling in love with the audiobook, I picked up a copy of the actual book from amazon and I can now proudly claim that Wild Magic is my favourite stand-alone book. I have heard/read it countless times. Without giving anything  major away, Wild Magic retells the tale of the Pied Piper but in a refreshing and lively new way you would have never heard before. The world is so magical and wonderful and completely immersive. Beautiful writing and a beautiful story. I love it!

  1. A Darker Shade of Magic trilogy by V.E. Schwab

Meet Kell, an Antari, meaning someone who can jump between alternate worlds. The Darker Shade of Magic trilogy is set in four versions of London: ordinary Grey London, magical Red London, corrupted White London and the destroyed world which was once known as Black London. With a believable magic system, epic plot, magical fight scenes and instantly lovable characters, this trilogy is strong and action-packed from beginning to end, with the third and final book being my favourite of the three. When Kell finds his world under threat from a new dark power, he must team up with Lila Bard, a thief from grey London, to save Red London from chaos and ruin. I would recommend this trilogy to anyone who loves fantasy, magic and excitement… and, let’s face it, who doesn’t?

  1. The Grisha trilogy by Leigh Bardugo

Leigh Bardugo is my favourite author and this trilogy also contains my favourite book character of all time: the privateer prince, Nikolai Lantsov. This trilogy plunges you headfirst into the rich, magical and totally believable Grisha universe, with stunningly vivid characters, an gripping plot and a fantastically crafted villain. Alina lives in Ravka, a country where the Grisha (humans with magical abilities) train for The Darkling, the most powerful Grisha ever known. I love everything about Leigh Bardugo’s writing, from her characters to her world building and the Grisha trilogy deserves a read from everyone.

  1. Six of Crows duology by Leigh Bardugo

Yes, it’s Leigh Bardugo again. The queen of characters herself brings us two more books from her stunning Grisha universe, except this time, the story is set in Ketterdam: the bustling trade-capital of Kerch, based off of the real life Amsterdam. With complex, lovable, intriguing and entirely believable characters, Six of Crows tells the story of six dangerous outcasts and one impossible heist. Kaz Brekker and his crew must break into the Ice Court, retrieve a hostage, and live long enough to claim their reward. I cannot stress how much I adore this duology and every one of the characters, and the story itself is woven masterfully. I would not change a thing about it, and if you haven’t read anything by Leigh Bardugo before, you better go out and give her books a read.

  1. Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children trilogy by Ransom Riggs

The countdown is up! Here is my number one favourite book of all time: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. Where do I start? This book is incredible. I went into it for the first time knowing absolutely nothing about it, but the cover had caught my eye in a bookshop and from the moment I saw it I knew I had to read it. The story unfolds through the eyes of sixteen-year-old Jacob Portman as he travels to an island to unravel the mystery of his Grandfather’s death. Packed with creepy photos, a mysterious plot, wonderfully lovable characters and peculiarness, this book had me hooked from beginning to end. In my opinion, it is a masterpiece and the trilogy just keeps getting better and better. Riggs’ world feels so real yet magical, and his writing style is entirely immersive. Once I picked this book up I could not put it down, so you can imagine my delight when he announced that a second trilogy would be coming soon! I love this book so much and I recommend it to the moon and back.’ 

Written by Amy Child (Student work experience)

Many of these fabulous young adult reads can be borrowed from your local Hillingdon library, please speak to a member of staff in branch or reserve online.

 

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