What's Up in YA

Queer Academia, Anastasia, and More YA Book Talk and News: August 17, 2023

Hey YA Readers!

Did you know that there have been two YA adaptations released in the last week? I only do because I happened to find them via the author — all this despite the fact that I spend hours a week reading and researching YA. Marketing these things has gotten terrible. Anyway, if you do Paramount+, you can catch the adaptation of Loveboat, Taipei and if you are doing theatrical releases, you can see Landscape With Invisible Hand by Abigail Hing Wen and MT Anderson respectively.

Looking for even more books? Delighting velocireaders since 2017, Book Riot’s New Release Index will keep you in the know about all the latest books. New books for days. Subscribe today — you won’t be able to read them all, but it’s fun to try! 

Bookish Goods

pink sweatshirt with he word "books" between two skeleton hands making a heart shape.

Spooky Book Love Embroidered Sweatshirt by TheDearWriterCo

It’s still sweltering where I am but that does not mean it is too early to start planning for Halloween. This is especially true if you do any Halloween apparel, so you can get the most out of it. Check out this fun embroidered spooky books sweatshirt for your seasonal — and hopefully soon, seasonally appropriate — wardrobe. $46, color options, up to size 3XL.

New Releases

No fancy intro. Let’s get right into the good stuff known as YA paperback release time (full list of today’s releases are right here).

how to succeed in witchcraft book cover

How to Succeed in Witchcraft by Aislinn Brophy

Shay Johnson is a junior at her Magical Magnet School and is extremely successful in witchcraft. So much so that she’s in the running to win a scholarship to the university of her dreams. In her way though is Ana Álvarez, against whom she’ll be trying to impress Mr. B, who is the head of the scholarship committee.

Being asked by Mr. B to be the lead in the school’s musical should be a good thing for Shay, but it’s not. She’s got to share the stage with Ana. And, well, Mr. B has a history of getting a little too close to his students, including Shay.

But slowly, Shay and Ana begin to talk. They become friends…and maybe even more than friends. It turns out they have a lot in common and both are ready to take down Mr. B for his behavior.

the storyteller book cover

The Storyteller by Kathryn Williams

Jess Morgan discovers something pretty life-changing in her late aunt’s diaries: her aunt may have been a Romanov princess. More specifically, she may have been Anastasia and pulled off one of the greatest historical hoaxes.

Together with a local college boy named Evan, Jess is determined to track down the truth about her Aunt Anna.

But much as it is interesting to dive into the truth of her aunt’s identity, the real story might be who it is Jess discovers herself to be.

This one is pitched as one part Maureen Johnson, one part Brittany Cavallero, making it perfect for mystery and historical lovers alike.

For a more comprehensive list of new releases, check out our New Books newsletter.

YA Book News

Two of the biggest stories this week are up in the introduction, so this week’s roundup is going to feel even shorter than some of the most recent news roundups. ‘Tis the end-of-summer reality of the publishing world. We should see a surge of news coming after U.S. Labor Day.

As always, thank you for hanging out. We’ll see you on Saturday for some rad book deals.

Until then, happy reading!

— Kelly Jensen, who hopes you’ll give her a follow over on her personal Substack.