YA Friday: November 2018 Monthly Wrap-Up

YA book covers with a blue circle and white text that reads Monthly Wrap-Up

November 2018

I have been blaming the darker, cooler, rainy Fall weather as the reason I don't want to go outside after work or hangout with other people.

In reality it is because with the brand new magical lands to explore in non-Western fantasies, epic sci-fi adventures, and Cold War era historical fiction books that were released this month, there is no longer a good reason to leave the house. I mostly want to stay home, under a blanket, with my cute cat and a warm drink and read all the new books.

Well, do that or watch BTS videos.

Mammoth book coverMammoth by Jill Baguchinsky

Paleontology enthusiast and plus-size fashion blogger Natalie Page is thrilled to land a summer internship at a dig site in Texas. It's not the best environment for her vintage heels and self-altered dresses, the armor that mostly shields her from bullying, but it's a chance to get up close and personal with the bones of woolly mammoths. One of the guys in the intern program is really cute (so is a tour guide, but he's a grump), and Natalie struggles to keep her fragile confidence from being shaken by thin, classically beautiful intern Quinn, whose paleontologist dad is Natalie's idol. Natalie has a real gift for finding fossils, but just as she starts to get comfortable, she discovers the industry's dark side. She'll have to learn to stand up for herself if she's going to have the life she wants.

Pulp book cover

Pulp by Robin Talley

In 1955, aspiring author Janet, a sheltered teen living in Washington, D.C., has no words for what she feels for her best friend, Marie, and she’s living through the Lavender Scare that forced LGBTQ people out of government jobs. When she finds a lesbian novel at a bus station, she’s inspired to write one herself. Sixty-two years later, high school senior Abby lives in the same city; her love life is hard because her girlfriend dumped her, not because anyone disapproves. Abby has long written fan fiction, and when she discovers lesbian pulp novels from the 1950s and early ’60s, she’s enthralled and sets out to examine the genre. The books are rule-bound—the women must straighten out or die tragically—but one tells a love story that Abby can’t stop thinking about, particularly because she’s trying to understand whether love can last.

The Lying Woods book coverThe Lying Woods by Ashley Elston

Senior Owen Foster, long-cloistered in affluence and his upscale New Orleans boarding school, can barely comprehend the shocking news from his mother: His father has been embezzling for years and now has disappeared, leaving his company, his employees' lives, and his family in shambles. Returning home, Owen finds himself the target of the town's rage; he gets threatening, unnerving messages accusing him and his mother of collusion. He tries to escape the endless demands to know where his father and the money are by working in an orchard with a nonjudgmental pecan farmer and by picking up the threads of an old friendship, but Owen is keeping his own secret from everyone—his dad sent him a letter right before he disappeared, suggesting they meet over Thanksgiving.

This Is What It Feels Like book cover

This is What it Feels Like by Rebecca Barrow

Jules, and Hanna just graduated from high school. They were in a band together when they were sophomores, but they had a falling out. In the meantime, Dia has had a baby and Hanna has gone to rehab. When a local band competition announces a juicy prize, they decide to get the band back together. In order to make this happen, they need to deal with some of the issues that made them break up in the first place, especially Hanna's past self-destructive behavior.

Little White Lies book cover

Little White Lies by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Sawyer Taft is used to hard work: at 18, she spends her time fixing cars, looking out for her less-than-reliable bartender mom, and verbally dressing down the guys who think a female mechanic is asking to be hit on. But then her estranged grandmother Lillian unexpectedly shows up and offers Sawyer a job of a different kind. If Sawyer agrees to enter society as a debutante, Lillian is prepared to offer her a six-figure trust, more than enough to comfortably fund college. If that’s not incentive enough, Sawyer’s mom has always been tight-lipped about Sawyer’s dad, but Sawyer knows he’s someone from her mom’s high-society days, and she’s hungry for clues. But the life of a debutante isn’t just fancy parties and pretty dresses, and Sawyer soon gets swept up in a mystery that involves her mom’s past and her own future, and it could be darker than she ever suspected.

Borrowed book cover

Borrowed by Lucia DiStefano

Almost a year has passed since Linnea received her donor heart, but she’s remembering things and doing things she shouldn’t. Maxine is mourning the loss of her sister, Harper, and trying to take care of her brothers and emotionally absent mom. When Linnea shows up claiming to be Maxine’s sister, complete with Harper’s memories and secrets, things take a psychologically thrilling turn. Harper has overtaken Linnea. When Harper realizes that the boy who murdered her now has his eyes on her sister, she and Maxine find themselves in a very dangerous game of survival.

Further Reading

Your Own Worst Enemy book coverEmpress of All Season book coverFive Feet Apart book coverAmber & Dusk book coverGirls of Paper and Fire book coverSkyward book cover