YA Fantasy Books You Won’t Put Down
The best young adult (YA) fantasy books are ones that captivate you with their world-building, character development, and plot twists. They take you away and make you feel like anything is possible. Here are some great reads for people of all ages looking for some well-written, imaginative, and fun stories that will make you laugh and cry!
What are YA Fantasy Books?
Young Adult books are written about adolescents and themes typically revolve around issues and coming-of-age events that are relevant to teenagers: friendships, first romances, and personal identity. Young adult fantasy books are typically written with young adult themes and combine those ideas with common fantasy tropes: magic, mythical world-building, and other supernatural elements. Some young adult fantasy novels can be written with urban or paranormal concepts like Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight Saga, or have a rich world-building with epic or high fantasy aspects, like C.S. Lewis’s The Chronicles of Narnia. While young adult and fantasy books have been written throughout history, the young adult fantasy genre is a relatively modern and new book category. It is very common for authors to write a series of young adult fantasies, but sometimes authors will write standalone young adult fantasy novels.
1. Shadow & Bone
by Leigh Bardugo
Alina Starkov knows she may not survive her first time across the Shadow Fold, a land filled with unnatural monsters and covered in darkness, but when Alina’s attacked, she unleashes magic she didn’t know she possessed. Enter the Grishaverse with the book that started the bestselling series by the #1 New York Times Bestselling Author, Leigh Bardugo!Buy on Amazon Buy on Apple Buy on Nook Buy on Kobo Buy on Google Play
2. The Demon Kiss
by Juliana Haygert
The first book in the Amazon bestselling series, Rite World: Blackthorn Hunters Academy. Join Erin as she discovers her secret heritage at an academy of demon hunters! This dark paranormal young adult fantasy is perfect for young adult readers who like to read romance books just as much as they like fantasy books.Free on Amazon Free on Apple Free on Nook Free on Kobo Free on Google Play
3. Hold Me Closer, Necromancer
by Lish McBride
Sam lived a normal life, until he met Douglas, a necromancer who raises the dead for money. Douglas sees potential in Sam’s latent powers and decides to teach him to be a necromancer too. Don’t miss out on this multi-award-winning bestseller!Buy on Amazon Buy on Apple Buy on Nook Buy on Kobo Buy on Google Play
4. The Wrath & The Dawn
by Renée Ahdieh
Games of Thrones meets Arabian Nights in this young adult fantasy by #1 New York Times Bestselling Author, Renée Ahdieh. Khalid, the boy king and Caliph of Khorasan, takes a new bride every night only to have her killed at sunrise. Obviously, no woman has ever volunteered for this fate — until Shahrzad volunteers to marry Khalid. But can Shazi survive to the next dawn, the dawn after that, and long enough to exact revenge on the king who’s murdered her best friend and countless other girls?Buy on Amazon Buy on Apple Buy on Nook Buy on Kobo Buy on Google Play
by Neal Shusterman
A TIME Best YA Book of All Time (2021) and a Printz Honor-winning book by New York Times Bestselling Author Neal Shusterman. In a world with no hunger, disease, war, or misery, the only ones who can end life as Scythes. Citra and Rowan are unwillingly forced to apprentice to a Scythe and learn to master the “art of killing.”Buy on Amazon Buy on Apple Buy on Nook Buy on Kobo Buy on Google Play
6. The Storm Crow
by Kalyn Josephson
Eragon meets And I Darken in this young adult fantasy where giant magical elemental crows fill the lands of Rhodaire, until the kingdom is invaded and princess Thia is forced to marry the enemy who killed her mother and all the crows in the kingdom. But Thia stumbles upon a spark of hope when she finds a crow egg and decides to hatch the egg in secret to get back at what was taken from her.Buy on Amazon Buy on Apple Buy on Nook Buy on Kobo Buy on Google Play
7. The Buried Symbol
by Jeffrey L Kohanek
Brock is determined to tame his magic, a magic that is outlawed by the Empire that’s outcasted him. Start reading the debut book of the bestselling Runes of Issalia series! Perfect for fans who love an underdog main character, magic, mystery, and monsters.Buy on Amazon Buy on Apple Buy on Nook Buy on Kobo Buy on Google Play
8. The Hidden King
by E.G. Radcliff
A breathtaking Celtic face mythology-inspired debut. Áed desperately embarks on a dangerous journey to seek a kingdom of legend and a new beginning for himself. But an ancient legacy inside Áed is about to turn deadly, and the world will never be the same.Buy on Amazon
9. Wicked Fox
by Kat Cho
An addictive young adult fantasy and romance set in modern-day Seoul, South Korea. Gu Miyoung is a gumiho, a nine-tailed fox who must devious the energy of men to live. After feeding one moon, Miyoung saves a human boy, Jihoon, from a goblin attack, but loses her precious fox bead, her gumiho soul. When a shaman tries to reunite Miyoung with her soul bead, she’s forced to choose between her life and Jihoon’s.Buy on Amazon Buy on Apple Buy on Nook Buy on Kobo Buy on Google Play
There are so many options when it comes to YA fantasy books, and it can be difficult to know where to start. The good news is that there are some really great ones! From classic worlds like Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials or J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter to newer series like Leigh Bardugo’s Grishaverse, there is a lot out there for you to enjoy. What are you waiting for? Get reading!
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