This week, the Aussie YA Bloggers Group is sharing the #LoveOzYA love across the blogosphere by sharing our favourite Aussie YA reads! Our authors are talented, diverse and super lovely. This Blog Hop is being hosted by Happy Indulgence, Genie in a Book, Loony Literate, Thoughts by J and My Life in Books, so make sure to give all their blogs a visit too.
Join the Twitter chat on Sunday 14 August at 6pm on #AusYABlogChat and @AusYABloggers!
Credit to Happy Indulgence for the rad banner!
Covers = Goodreads
What you love about Aussie YA
I’m kind of stealing Jeann’s answer here, but that’s because it’s exactly the reason why I love Oz YA. I feel like Oz YA could be a whole sub genre in the YA field. There’s always such unique and diverse concepts. Plus it’s always great being able to recognise settings and relate to things that are specific to your country. There’s just an immediate connection with the language and writing style – even in books that aren’t necessarily in Australia. I normally can’t get into contemporaries at all, but there’s something about Oz YA contemporaries that I always seem to love and I think it’s the familiarity and how they nearly always defy tropes.
Favourite Aussie YA authors
Rebecca James – she writes the most amazing YA/NA thrillers. The only NA I’ve been able to read is Rebecca’s because she stays away from all the usual NA tropes. Beautiful Malice is one of my favourite books ever.
Em Bailey – Em wrote the amazing genre bending thriller Shift which is again one of my all time favourite books. I am DYING to read her new book The Special Ones which is all about a cult.
The Aussie YA book you grew up with
This is cheating slightly because I didn’t really have a Aussie YA book as such, but I did have a Middle Grade series: Aussie Angels by Margaret Clark. It was around in 2000 and was about a brother and sister whose family rescued and cared for wildlife. When I was younger I was OBSESSED with animals and was convinced I wanted to be a wildlife worker and these books were a HUGE part of the reason why. I read all 21 books in this series and honestly I’d read them all again.
Favourite Aussie YA book released in 2016
Definitely The Sidekicks by Will Kostakis. Not only was it a perfect cure for my The Raven Cycle hangover (with it’s incredible friendship group), but it also depicted an amazing and realistic portrayal of grief. This book really helped me with some of my own issues regarding grief.
It’s about 3 boys whose only common tie is their shared best friend. Once he dies they have to try and work out who they are without him.
There’s no absent parents, no instalove and themes that deal with LGBT+. It’s really beautiful and if you don’t cry during it – I guarantee you will be once you read the last couple of pages. READ THIS!!!!
Aussie YA Debut you are looking forward to
I can’t choose just one – so here’s three!!
Yellow by Megan Jacobson: This is about a girl who’s dealing with bullying and her parents divorcing. She starts speaking to the spirit of a teenage boy through a broken phone booth and promises to find out who murdered him if he promises to make her popular, get her parents back together and doesn’t haunt her. This sounds so incredible. I love the possible paranormal twist on a contemporary setting and the cover is STUNNING.
Frankie by Shivaun Plozza: To quote the Goodreads summary: “Frankie Vega is angry. Just ask the guy whose nose she broke. Or the cop investigating the burglary she witnessed, or her cheating ex-boyfriend or her aunt who’s tired of giving second chances“. A lot is going on in her life when a kid shows up claiming to be her half brother. When he suddenly goes missing and Frankie goes to try and find him even if it means she has to confront her past. I’ve heard lots of great things about this and again the cover is so pretty!
The Road to Winter by Mark Smith: I know a lot of people are over the dystopian thing, but it’s always something I’ll love. This is about a 16 year old boy, Finn, who’s living in a dystopian Australia where a virus has wiped out mot of the population. He tries to survive and avoid the “Wilders” who are ruthless and rule the land north to were he is. Finn meets Rose who’s a “Siley” – a name given to asylum seekers who are sold into slavery. Finn helps Rose and they form an alliance, but Rose also has a secret. I really think I’ll love this!! The only dystopian I have some familiarity with that’s set in Australia is Tomorrow, When the War Began (which this has been compared to) so it should be interesting!
Favourite Aussie YA series
Kind of cheating again because the series isn’t completed and the second book isn’t even out yet, but…
I’m so excited to see where The Illuminae Files goes. I feel like so many crazy things are going to go down and I’M NOT READY. Just seeing Amie and Jay’s tweets about writing book 3 is KILLING ME.
Unexpected Aussie YA surprise
Illuminae by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
1) This book got me out of an almost 2 year reading slump. I didn’t think I’d ever be invested in reading again but then this book happened.
2) When I heard about it and the formatting I thought it was going to make the story disjointed and the characters disconnected, but OH BOY WAS I WRONG.
3) I will never get over the character development in this book. EVER. I mean a freaking AI even had character development? And it was SO BELIEVABLE?
Stolen by Lucy Christopher
I was excited to read this because of the concept (stalking, kidnapping, Australian desert), but I also judged it by tropes that exist out there and thought this was going to romanticise kidnapping. However, to my surprise it was such a realistic portrayal of Stockholm Syndrome! I was so impressed by this book and how realistic it was.
Aussie YA Book you always recommend to others
You all know what’s coming…
everyone who’s followed me for more than a week: [groans audibly in the background] WE GET IT, LAUREN, YOU LOVE ILLUMINAE!!!!!!!!!!!
I PROMISE IT’S WORTH IT! Don’t let the hype, format or size scare you. I mean if you don’t wanna read it that’s cool too
, but like also you should read it.
I recommend Shift by Em Bailey and Beautiful Malice by Rebecca James every chance I get too. They’re both AMAZING, full of crazy plot twists, fast paced and gritty.
An Aussie YA book on your TBR
SO MANY!!!! Here are the ones I’m hoping to read soon-ish though.
Recommend your favourite Aussie YA Bloggers!
I can’t even express how amazing and wonderful all these girls are! Their blogs are all so lovely (just like them!). They all post brilliant reviews and discussions. I’ve been following some of them since I’ve started blogging and others are newer, but ALL of them inspire me so, so much. I can’t recommend them and their blogs enough ♥♥♥