November's Most Anticipated Young Adult Reads

Posted by Sharon on November 1, 2020

As dedicated readers already know, some of the best and most innovative stories on the shelves come from the constantly evolving realm of young adult fiction. Every month our team looks at the books being published and how they're resonating with early readers. We use this information to put together a roundup of soon-to-be favorites.

New in November: Cause-and-effect rules get an overhaul in Instant Karma, love blossoms on school vacation in Here the Whole Time, and well-intentioned deception gets complicated in Rent a Boyfriend. Plus: Mischievous faerie children, brooding rebels, and the lost city of Atlantis!

Add the books that catch your eye to your Want to Read shelf, and let us know what you’re reading and recommending in the comments!

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A retelling of Romeo and Juliet set in 1920s Shanghai, this historical fiction debut novel from Chloe Gong sounds like enormous fun. Eighteen-year-old Juliette Cai finds herself in the middle of a blood feud between two rival criminal syndicates—the White Flowers and the Scarlet Gang—as the city descends into debauched chaos. Meanwhile, a mysterious contagion is loose in the city and, oh yeah, there may be a monster in the Huangpu River.

Read our exclusive interview with Chloe Gong.

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YA fantasy veteran Holly Black is back with a new illustrated addition to the popular Folk of the Air series, set in the legendary realm of Elfhame. The new installment features several full-color illustrated passages, all written from the POV of Elfhame’s mysterious high king, Cardan. The collection includes a story from back when wicked king Cardan was just a mischievous faerie kid, plus some sideways departures from previous installments The Cruel Prince and The Queen of Nothing.

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Mixing romance with a splash of magic realism, Marissa Meyer’s new novel comes with an interesting premise: What if you could force instant karma on everyone around you, at will? That’s the unexpected new magical power granted to Prudence Daniels, dedicated overachiever and busybody. She’s a little judgy. But there’s one person who keeps causing the power to backfire: Pru’s lab partner and sworn enemy Quint Erickson. Judge not, young Prudence, lest ye be judged.

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The YA romance Love & Olives is the latest in Jenna Evans Welch’s Love & Gelato series, which, as you may have intuited, involves European adventures, plot points, and foodstuffs. We’re back to the Mediterranean this time around as our heroine Liv Varanakis travels to Greece to help her father with research into mythology and the lost city of Atlantis. Will her father have a handsome young protégé hanging around? Yeah, turns out he does.

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In a world where music is literally magic, the powerful mage Cadence is being forced by her evil queen to torture the nation’s disgraced nobility with song. But help may have just arrived with the appearance of Cadence’s childhood friend, a noblewoman with ties to the underground rebellion. Julia Ember’s unique book blends YA themes with fantasy and LGBTQ+ romance, plus some interesting twists on magic systems and world-building.

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This body-positive LGBTQ+ love story from Brazilian author Vitor Martins chronicles a two-week vacation in the life of Felipe, a high school student whose plans for the academic break have just gone haywire. Felipe was looking forward to two weeks of reading and binge-watching TV, but now he’s going to have to share the apartment with neighbor Caio, whose parents are going out of town. The catch? Felipe has a huge crush on Caio. Awwwkward.

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Book two in the popular Camelot Rising trilogy, The Camelot Betrayal digs deeper still into the Arthurian mythology that’s been fascinating the Western world for several centuries now. Queen Guinevere has accepted her role in the kingdom, but it’s all a ruse. The queen is actually a changeling, sent by Merlin to protect the realm. As such, she feels out of place among all these worthies: Lancelot, Brangien, and of course Arthur, the big man himself. Maybe Mordred was right. She’ll never belong. But lo! A stranger approacheth!

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Winner of this month’s informal Best Book Title award, A Cuban Girl's Guide to Tea and Tomorrow tells the story of Lila Reyes, abruptly relocated from Miami to Winchester, England, when her world falls apart. The U.K. is a strange place for a Miami girl, but Lila tries to make the best of things by practicing the intricate culinary arts taught to her by her late and beloved abuela. Soon enough, Lila has a British boyfriend, kind of, and a tempting opportunity in London. Decisions must be made!

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It’s actually a pretty great idea: Rent for Your ’Rents is a matchmaking service that provides fake boyfriends for girls with overly traditional Asian parents. It’s just what Chloe Wang needs for her upcoming reunion with her Taiwanese parents, who are trying to marry her off to the very rich but very shady bachelor Hongbo. The provided fake boyfriend, Drew, is working out great—until Chloe realizes she kinda wishes the “fake” part would go away. Modern love. It’s really quite deeply confusing.

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Emily didn’t think college would be quite like this. After a few initial weeks of loneliness, the hopeful freshman has found a community with the on-campus organization called the Kingdom. It’s all good until the on-campus group goes off campus, and a summer in Italy turns into a slowly creeping nightmare. Author Jennifer Moffett’s mystery thriller descends into the weird world of cults, where no one can be trusted and nothing is as it seems.

Which new releases are you looking forward to reading? Let’s talk books in the comments!

Check out more recent articles, including:
YA Debut Sets 'Romeo and Juliet' in 1920s Gangster Shanghai
33 Novels Written During NaNoWriMo
Readers' Most Anticipated Books of November

Comments Showing 1-13 of 13 (13 new)

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message 1: by Louie (new)

Louie All of these look amazing especially Cuban Girl's Guide, but I also am really looking forward to Rebel Rose by Emma Theriault, a Beauty and the Beast retelling!

message 2: by Viana (new)

Viana everything's pink or blue, i'm not going to say nothing, it's freaking beautiful and we want it all. thanks.

message 3: by Lastoadri (new)

Lastoadri aren't there similar wrap ups but for other languages?

message 4: by Veronica (new)

Veronica Jones I'm currently reading Children of Virtue and Vengeance by Tomi Adeyemi which is a MUST READ for Young Adults as well as Adults.

I'm very interested in reading "These Violent Delights" by Chloe Gong as well as "Instant Karma" by Marissa Meyer

message 5: by Emi (new)

Emi I am be so happy if I get to read one of these.

message 6: by Eduarda (new)

Eduarda Schorn Vitor Martins' Here the Whole Time is here and I TOTALLY recommend it <3

message 7: by Allie Nicole (new)

Allie Nicole  Ast I would read ALL of these!

message 8: by Rawan (new)

Rawan Hreshee How the King of Elfhame Learned to Hate Stories (The Folk of the Air, #3.5) by Holly Black baby

message 9: by Kelly (new)

Kelly Santana-Banks These look awesome! Would love to add some of these to my reading list.

message 10: by Bella (new)

Bella Veronica wrote: "I'm currently reading Children of Virtue and Vengeance by Tomi Adeyemi which is a MUST READ for Young Adults as well as Adults.

I'm very interested in reading "These Violent Delights" by Chloe Gon..."

Yess! Children of Virtue and Vengeance id one of my favorite books ever! Hope you enjoy it!

message 11: by Amelie (new)

Amelie I cannot WAIT to read Those Who Prey

message 12: by Tahnee (new)

Tahnee Perry Always excited for new YA fiction!

message 13: by Ayesha (new)

Ayesha the Great (Happier Than Ever) I read How the King of Elfhame Learned to Hate Stories over the weekend, and let me tell you, it was the best! i need more Faerie books from Holly Black

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