YA Books With Royal Titles

I have a decided weakness for books with royalty in the titles. There is just something about picking up a Young Adult book that shouts “QUEEN!” that fills me with immense joy. (Probably because I want to be queen of all when I grow up?) And, as YA title trends go, this is quite a popular one.

Today I have a list of royalishly (that’s totally a word, shhh) books for any majestic reading cravings you might have.

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9781481441902The Impostor Queen by Sarah Fine is probably one of my most favourite books of the year. Seriously, I could shriek about it forever! I9780062360243t has a Slavic feel to the setting, plus much fire and ice magic, and a decidedly tortured queen who ends up on the run due to not having the powers she “should have”.

Shadow Queen by CJ Redwine is a fairytale retelling about dragons and princesses and wicked queens. What could possibly go wrong with this fabulous combination?

9781783443819The Serpent King by Zentner is set in a small gothic town and is about crime and cults. I haven’t read this one yet, but have heard marvellous things about it. It possibly doesn’t have actual royalty in it? But eh. The title is still amazing.9781408858615

Queen of Shadows by Sarah J Maas is fourth in the Throne of Glass series. (Apparently mixing “shadows” and “queens” is quite popular. Who knew?) It definitely is about the missing heir to the throne finally owning up to her heritage and beginning the war for her kingdom back.

9781423121367The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima starts off an intensely AMAZING epic fantasy series about thieves and magicians, and it actually has a queendom. I KNOW! Praise the world for a matriarchy in YA fantasy for once! It also has the kind of hilarious banter that you need in your life. I promise. You just do.9781409150725

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard is probably one of the most hyped books in the dystopian YA circles at the moment. It’s has a definite Xmen vibe to it, with people sprouting superpowers all over the place. The different classes have different coloured blood and rebellion is in the air. (As usual, with dystopians. The peasants are never satisfied, are they?)

9781741168693Iron King by Julie Kagawa starts off an intense series about faeries and magic and probably mayhem. I mean, have you ever read a book about faeries were everyone played nice? I don’t think so. The series also continues with the royalty theme with other books being called The Lost Prince and Iron Queen.9781406330366

Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare is the second in the Infernal Devices series…and while it doesn’t so much feature royalty, the book is a whirlwind if maniac demon and shapeshifter adventures. Plus it’s set in the p9780545284134eriod times. Imagine clonking a demon while wearing a corset, okay?! These people deserve our respect for sure.

The False Prince by Jennifer A Neilson is a hysterical book. Honestly. You need this one just for the pure amounts of sass that runaway thief, Sage, manages to throw at people. This is all about impersonating princes and very high stakes (aka death) if he fails.

Review: Preparation For The Next Life by Atticus Lish

9781780747774This is one of those books that immediately after you start reading you know you are in the hands of a wonderful writer. Atticus Lish has delivered a delicately savage critique on post-9/11 America and the so-called American Dream in a beautiful love story of an illegal immigrant and an American soldier recently returned from Iraq.

Zou Lei is a Chinese-Muslim who has escaped from northwest China and the wars in neighbouring Afghanistan. Alone, with barely any possessions or clothes Zou Lei is quickly set to work for long hours and small pay but is ostracized within the Chinese migrant community because of her Uighur-Chinese background. Despite this she embraces the small freedoms she now has and is determined to carve out a new life for herself despite the hardships.

Skinner is an army veteran of three tours in Iraq. Recently discharged he arrives in New York looking for a good time. Looking to find ways to forget. Skinner was “stop lost” as a soldier. Administratively lost in the system and sent back for two more tours of Iraq. When he does finally leave the Army, America itself “stop losses” him. Damaged and scarred, mentally and physically, from his service Skinner is abandoned by the country he has just served to find his own way, find himself and try to survive in the country he has returned to. Lost, confused, alone and haunted by what he has experienced the portrayal of Skinner is one of the best I have read in terms of PTSD, its effects on the individual and its affects on those around them.

Skinner and Zou Lei find each other and their relationship is unsentimental. Theirs is not a love story of passion nor is it one of forgiveness. It is certainly one of circumstance but they endure more than their situation. Skinner and Zou Lei both find in each other a glimmer of hope for a future. That together they might be able to overcome the situation they each find themselves in. Together maybe they can survive. They have found each other so therefore they might no longer be lost. But they must not lose each other or they could lose what little they have left.

Atticus Lish’s writing is sharp, exact and deliberate carrying you through the lives of these two tragic figures. You are absorbed into Skinner’s and Zou Lei’s lives and their surroundings and the sense of being lost and abandoned is beautifully evoked through disconnected dialogue and the divide that exists between both Skinner and Zou Lei’s relationship and the world around them. This is a novel that permeates through you, long after you finish it and is a truly exception debut.

Buy the book here…