I'm keen to support British authors on this blog. So from now on, at the beginning of every month, I will endeavour to highlight the YA and MG books being published written by British authors. I may not include them all, but not for lack of trying!
January starts 2013 off really strongly! I'm very much looking forward to reading The Disappeared and Undone and for carrying on with exciting series that I've already started with Frost and Burning Bright. Look out for the guest post and interview that I have this month with CJ Daugherty and with Sangu Mandanna! I've not read the Dancing Jax series, is it good? And a new book by Nick Lake...
The second title in a new four-book romance series from the Red House Book Award–winning author of Girl, Missing.
Four months have passed and River and Flynn are still going strong. But things are not perfect. Flynn continues to fly into unprovoked rages, and when River tells her mum, she is banned from seeing him. Fighting to stay together, they end up being torn apart. Is it all over for River and Flynn?
Jem Halliday is in love with her gay best friend. Not exactly ideal, but she's learning to live with it.
Then the unspeakable happens. Kai is outed online ... and he kills himself.
Jem knows nothing she can say or do will bring him back. But she wants to know who was responsible. And she wants to take them down.
A searing story of love, revenge and betrayal from a bestselling author.
In a future where children are segregated into institutions that range from comfortable “Learning Communities” to prison-like “Local Academies”, seventeen-year-old Jackson is an academic high flyer, living in a top Learning Community and destined for a position in the Leadership. But when he is sent with his best friend Wilson to deliver a package to a factory block, the two boys are attacked, leaving Jackson badly beaten and Wilson dead.
Confused and upset, Jackson returns to his Learning Community only to be dismissed by his teachers who claim not to know him. Sent to an Academy, an institute set up to train factory workers, Jackson finds himself immersed in a world that couldn’t be further removed than the comfortable life he’s used to; a harsh, violent, semi-articulate society where the students have created their own hierarchy based on fighting ability.
Using his wits to survive, Jackson starts to realise that his whole life has been based on half-truths. And in order to survive he needs to expose the lies that surround the Academy and find out the truth about who he really is. As he builds alliances and begins to educate those closest to him, a plan for rebellion and escape gradually comes into shape...
Fast-paced, page-turning, moving, yet with a streak of dark humour, The Disappeared is a very British dystopia, with shades of Orwell and Huxley.
One house, two worlds, dark secrets...
The year is 1910. For the past decade, the Averley family has lived a life of luxury in India, but now they must return to Lord Averley's ancestral estate, the sprawling, majestically beautiful Somerton Court. As the household staff hastily prepare for the family's arrival, they receive shocking news: Lord Averley is bringing back a fiancée with three children of her own, and on top of that, there are rumours of a terrible scandal surrounding Lord Averley's resignation as Lieutenant Governor of Bengal.
As the family settles in, tensions arise both upstairs and downstairs. Lady Ada must choose between her honour and her heart, Sebastian must fend off ruinous threats from a former servant (and lover...) and gentle housemaid Rose will find herself at the centre of a scandal so enormous it could destroy the Averleys' reputation forever. With plenty of scheming, scandal and sauciness, SECRETS & SAPPHIRES is a thrilling period-drama perfect for fans of Jilly Cooper and DOWNTON ABBEY.
Eva’s life is not her own. She is a creation, an abomination – an echo. Made by the Weavers as a copy of someone else, she is expected to replace a girl named Amarra, her ‘other’, if she ever died. Eva studies what Amarra does, what she eats, what it’s like to kiss her boyfriend, Ray. So when Amarra is killed in a car crash, Eva should be ready.
But fifteen years of studying never prepared her for this.
Now she must abandon everything she’s ever known – the guardians who raised her, the boy she’s forbidden to love – to move to India and convince the world that Amarra is still alive ...
Last time Nell went into the mist she rescued her sister. This time she’ll have to go farther than the Elven forest, farther than the frozen wastes beyond and onto a lake of primal ice so treacherous she’ll be lucky to return at all.
It’s the New Year, Woodbridge School is closed and the country is snowed in. While the blizzards rage and Nell’s mum works double shifts, their house is full of Gwen’s friends permanently crashing out on every bed and sofa. The Elven world is frozen, too. It’s deep in snow and ice storms are ravaging the forest. Worst of all the massive Harps that keep the Elven land twisted out of sight are falling silent. No music, no land.
Can Nell and Evan cross the deadly frozen lake that surrounds their land, and fight through freezing blizzards? And if they do reach the Harp will they be able to overcome the two enemies waiting for them - Loki and Laki Winter? They are feared Ice Elven, a race so secretive that most young Elven think they’re myths used to scare them into being good. The scheming Winter twins are all too real, though, and they’ll stop at nothing to make sure the Harps stay silent.
14-year-old Suzy Puttock and her three best friends lead an average teenage life, spending most of their time in school, home or hanging out in cafes. Side-splitting mishaps and cringe moments have a nasty habit of following Suzy wherever she goes, but otherwise life's pretty normal - she's been going out with Danny since forever, her nutty older sister Amber's wedding is taking up all her family's attention and her annoying younger sister Harry is intent on making her life a misery. But when gorgeous new boy Zach starts showing Suzy attention, she wonders if the grass may be greener on the other side of the romantic fence. Before Suzy knows it, she has broken up with Danny, there's a huge rift in her friendship group and life is careering off track. Can she sort herself out before things are messed up completely?
In the last year, Allie's survived three arrests, two breakups and one family breakdown. The only bright point has been her new life at Cimmeria Academy. It's the one place she's felt she belongs. And the fact that it's brought the dreamy Carter West into her life hasn't hurt...But far from being a safe haven, the cloistered walls of Cimmeria are proving more dangerous than Allie could've imagined. The students, and faculty, are under threat and Allie's family - from her mysterious grandma to her runaway brother - are at the centre of the storm. Allie is going to have to choose between protecting her family and trusting her friends. But secrets have a way of ripping even the strongest relationships apart...
JD's father has been burnt alive by the Silver Men. His mother has run away. Lost in the desert without water, JD meets a strange old man whose mouth has been sewn shut. That man's secret will save his life. The search for his mother leads JD to the City, where he must face the true horrors of life under the Silver Men. Trapped inside the Pits of enslaved children scraping for water, he must risk everything and everyone he has ever loved in order to survive. "Boonie" is a story of bravery, friendship, loss and hope that will stay with you long after the final page is turned.
Fighting Pax by Robin Jarvis (31st January, HarperCollins)
Throughout the world, Dancing Jax reigns supreme. The Ismus and his court are celebrated and adored, and the Ismus is writing the much-awaited sequel to Dancing Jax. But when someone accidentally reads the manuscript, the true, evil purpose of Austerly Fellows is finally revealed. Can the resistance halt the publication of Fighting Pax? Or is humanity doomed and will the Dawn Prince arise at last?
It's a once-in-a-lifetime thing: a girl on a yacht with her super-rich banker father; a chance for the family to heal after a turbulent time; the peaceful sea, the warm sun ...But a nightmare is about to explode as a group of Somali pirates seizes the boat and its human cargo - and the family becomes a commodity in a highly sophisticated transaction. Hostage 1 is Dad - the most valuable. Amy is Hostage 3. As she builds a strange bond with one of her captors, it becomes brutally clear that the price of a life and its value are very different things ...
Which books by British authors are you looking forward to reading in January?