Some YA/MG debuts that I think should get more attention!  No concrete time frame, but relatively recent.

1.  The Creeping by Alexandra Sirowy – Something about Sirowy’s prose keeps me a bit at arm’s length, but she knows how to take an idyllic small town and bring out the seedy underbelly.  Her first book is still her best imo, following a heroine who gets caught up in murders in a town were some people talk of a legendary monster in the woods.

2.  Don’t Get Caught by Kurt Dinan -  Probably the most frustrating one on the list, this book cries out for a sequel, but there doesn’t seem to be one coming.  Our ragtag crew is set up by the school’s legendary prank club, so they set out for revenge.  There is one or two moments where the pranks get bit disgusting for my taste, but it’s an engaging read that still has me wanting more.

3.  Insignia by Sj Kincaid – Kincaid’s newer SF series, The Diabolic, has gotten some more attention, but I think this trilogy is actually better.  It’s Harry Potter meets Ender’s Game, following a group of cadets being trained to fight in a future war.

4.  Lies You Never Told Me by Jennifer Donaldson – This one is quite recent and it has gotten some attention, but I think the tale of deeply unhealthy relationships could use some more love.  The end was a bit of a let down, unfortunately, but most of the book was very good.

5.  Sanctuary by Caryn Lix – Another recent one, this SF book could be said to be The 100 meets Alien.  Our protagonist is a young guard on a space station that houses the young prisoners who have begun to display mysterious powers, since a strange group of probes appeared over the Earth.  A prison break quickly becomes unimportant when they realize there is someone or something else on the station.

6.  Nevermoor by Jessica Townsend – This has gotten some attention, including film rights being sold, but it still doesn’t seem to get quite the recognition I think it deserves.  Definite shades of Harry Potter, but still very much its own thing.

7.  Shimmer and Burn by Mary Taranta – It starts a bit like Hunger Games, with a heroine being drawn into a dangerous quest to protect her sister, but this is an interesting, unique fantasy series that is not a copy of anything.

8.  Nyxia by Scott Reintgen – A gripping addition to the YA SF field, with one blemish, in that it sadly has one of the biggest Mary Sue’s I’ve ever seen.  I still recommend the series, in spite of that!

9. Prisoner of Ice and Snow by Ruth Lauren – Kind of an odd one, in that the book feels a bit MG or younger YA while the plot, a sort of fantasy Prison Break, seems like it should be upper YA.  But it works, and my only real concern is if there will be a third book in the series, as no news has come out about that yet.  .

10.  Vanished by E.E. Cooper – A YA mystery/thriller that seemed to fly mostly under the radar.  This is a duology, though interestingly the mystery is pretty much solved in the first book, with the sequel being just about finding the proof, and trying to deal with a sociopath.

Published by Andrew Clendening