New Releases

February YA Book Releases

January 29, 2021

January 2021 YA Book Releases

Happy February! There’s so many exciting books to look forward to this month!

Release Date: February 2, 2021A Taste for Love
Find it: Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound, Bookshop

For fans of Jenny Han, Jane Austen, and The Great British Baking Show, A Taste for Love, is a delicious rom com about first love, familial expectations, and making the perfect bao.

To her friends, high school senior Liza Yang is nearly perfect. Smart, kind, and pretty, she dreams big and never shies away from a challenge. But to her mom, Liza is anything but. Compared to her older sister Jeannie, Liza is stubborn, rebellious, and worst of all, determined to push back against all of Mrs. Yang’s traditional values, especially when it comes to dating.

The one thing mother and daughter do agree on is their love of baking. Mrs. Yang is the owner of Houston’s popular Yin & Yang Bakery. With college just around the corner, Liza agrees to help out at the bakery’s annual junior competition to prove to her mom that she’s more than her rebellious tendencies once and for all. But when Liza arrives on the first day of the bake-off, she realizes there’s a catch: all of the contestants are young Asian American men her mother has handpicked for Liza to date.

The bachelorette situation Liza has found herself in is made even worse when she happens to be grudgingly attracted to one of the contestants; the stoic, impenetrable, annoyingly hot James Wong. As she battles against her feelings for James, and for her mother’s approval, Liza begins to realize there’s no tried and true recipe for love.

Jennifer Yen’s “Love With a Side of Fortune” was one of my favorite short stories in the Together, Apart anthology, so I’m very excited to read her debut novel!

 

Fat Chance, Charlie VegaRelease Date: February 2, 2021
Find it: Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound, Bookshop

Coming of age as a Fat brown girl in a white Connecticut suburb is hard. Harder when your whole life is on fire, though.

Charlie Vega is a lot of things. Smart. Funny. Artistic. Ambitious. Fat.

People sometimes have a problem with that last one. Especially her mom. Charlie wants a good relationship with her body, but it’s hard, and her mom leaving a billion weight loss shakes on her dresser doesn’t help. The world and everyone in it have ideas about what she should look like: thinner, lighter, slimmer-faced, straighter-haired. Be smaller. Be whiter. Be quieter.

But there’s one person who’s always in Charlie’s corner: her best friend Amelia. Slim. Popular. Athletic. Totally dope. So when Charlie starts a tentative relationship with cute classmate Brian, the first worthwhile guy to notice her, everything is perfect until she learns one thing—he asked Amelia out first. So is she his second choice or what? Does he even really see her?

Because it’s time people did.

A sensitive, funny, and painful coming-of-age story with a wry voice and tons of chisme, Fat Chance, Charlie Vega tackles our relationships to our parents, our bodies, our cultures, and ourselves.

I’ve started seeing this one around social a lot and it sounds so good!

 

PaybackRelease Date: February 2, 2021
Find it: Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound, Bookshop

The unpredictable truth will be revealed in Payback, the stunning conclusion to Kristen Simmons’ Edgar-nominated thriller series that started with The Deceivers . . .

Brynn Hilder has conned a lot of people. From the spoiled rich kids of Sikawa City to her mom’s loser ex-boyfriend, from a motorcycle gang to a senator’s son. If there was money to be gained, or a secret to uncover, she figured out how to get it done. And thanks to Vale Hall and its director, Dr. David Odin, she’s found a family of hustlers just like her.

Together, Brynn and her friends have overcome doubt, deceit, and betrayal to unearth the truth–a truth even a group of professional scammers couldn’t have predicted.

And now they must tackle the biggest con artist of them all: the man who brought them all together.

I binged read The Deceivers and Scammed back-to-back at the beginning of January, and now I am so excited for the conclusion of the Vale Hall series!

 

The ProjectRelease Date: February 2, 2021
Find it: Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound, Bookshop

From Courtney Summers, the New York Times bestselling author of the 2019 Edgar Award Winner and breakout hit, Sadie, comes a sensational follow-up―another pulls-no-punches thriller about an aspiring young journalist determined to save her sister from a cult.

“The Unity Project saved my life.”

Lo Denham is used to being on her own. After her parents died, Lo’s sister, Bea, joined The Unity Project, leaving Lo in the care of their great aunt. Thanks to its extensive charitable work and community outreach, The Unity Project has won the hearts and minds of most in the Upstate New York region, but Lo knows there’s more to the group than meets the eye. She’s spent the last six years of her life trying―and failing―to prove it.

“The Unity Project murdered my son.”

When a man shows up at the magazine Lo works for claiming The Unity Project killed his son, Lo sees the perfect opportunity to expose the group and reunite with Bea once and for all. When her investigation puts her in the direct path of its charismatic and mysterious leader, Lev Warren, he proposes a deal: if she can prove the worst of her suspicions about The Unity Project, she may expose them. If she can’t, she must finally leave them alone.

But as Lo delves deeper into The Project, the lives of its members, and spends more time with Lev, it upends everything she thought she knew about her sister, herself, cults, and the world around her―to the point she can no longer tell what’s real or true. Lo never thought she could afford to believe in Lev Warren . . . but now she doesn’t know if she can afford not to.

Welcome to The Unity Project.

I finally read Sadie last year and loved it. Looking forward to reading more of Courtney Summers’ novel.

 

Release Date: February 2, 2021The Afterlife of the Party
Find it: Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound, Bookshop

I didn’t even want to go to the party.

Seriously, I’d rather have stayed home with my librarian-witch grandmother and her mystical book club than go. But my best friend Skyler begged me. So I went.

And it was the worst party of my life. Actually, it was the last party of my life.

Not only was there something very strange about the band, but the lead singer bit me afterwards. And then took off with Skyler.

Now I’m chasing down a band of dangerous vamps with my best guy friend Vaughn―the boy I’ve been secretly crushing on forever.

But anything can happen on the road.

I thought all I wanted was for things to change with Vaughn. For him to finally see the real me. But this wasn’t what I had in mind . . .

Let the afterlife begin.

Entangled Teen sent me a copy of this book and it sounds so fun!

 

A Pho Love StoryRelease Date: February 9, 2021
Find it: Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound, Bookshop

When Dimple Met Rishi meets Ugly Delicious in this funny, smart romantic comedy, in which two Vietnamese-American teens fall in love and must navigate their newfound relationship amid their families’ age-old feud about their competing, neighboring restaurants.

If Bao Nguyen had to describe himself, he’d say he was a rock. Steady and strong, but not particularly interesting. His grades are average, his social status unremarkable. He works at his parents’ pho restaurant, and even there, he is his parents’ fifth favorite employee. Not ideal.

If Linh Mai had to describe herself, she’d say she was a firecracker. Stable when unlit, but full of potential for joy and fire. She loves art and dreams pursuing a career in it. The only problem? Her parents rely on her in ways they’re not willing to admit, including working practically full-time at her family’s pho restaurant.

For years, the Mais and the Nguyens have been at odds, having owned competing, neighboring pho restaurants. Bao and Linh, who’ve avoided each other for most of their lives, both suspect that the feud stems from feelings much deeper than friendly competition.

But then a chance encounter brings Linh and Bao in the same vicinity despite their best efforts and sparks fly, leading them both to wonder what took so long for them to connect. But then, of course, they immediately remember.

Can Linh and Bao find love in the midst of feuding families and complicated histories?

Romcoms really are my favorite, and this one sounds absolutely adorable! Plus, that cover is freaking gorgeous.

 

Release Date: February 9, 2021Hot British Boyfriend
Find it: Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound, Bookshop

This enchanting debut teen romance novel, which follows one girl across the Atlantic in a quest to find adventure, love (preferably with a guy with a cute accent), and maybe even herself, is perfect for fans of Kasie West and Stephanie Perkins.

After a horrifying public rejection by her crush, Ellie Nichols does what any girl would do: she flees the country. To be more precise, she joins her high school’s study abroad trip to England. While most of her classmates are there to take honors courses and pad their college applications, Ellie is on a quest to rebuild her reputation and self-confidence. And nothing is more of a confidence booster than getting a hot British boyfriend.

When Ellie meets Will, a gorgeous and charming Brit, she vows to avoid making the same mistakes she did with the last guy she liked. Which is why she strikes up a bargain with Dev, an overachieving classmate who she’s never clicked with, but who does seem to know a lot about the things Will is interested in: If he helps her win over her crush, then she’ll help him win over his.

But even as Ellie embarks on a whirlwind romance, she still needs to figure out if this is actually the answer to all her problems . . . and whether the perfect boyfriend is actually the perfect boy for her.

Don’t miss this paperback original teen romance book, for girls 13-16 and up as well as adult readers who enjoy a well-written and fun teen romance novel.

Hot British Boyfriend sounds so cute! I’m especially excited to read it as I have an interview with the author scheduled for February! Be sure to come back and read it!

 

Like HomeRelease Date: February 23, 2021
Find it: Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound, Bookshop

Fans of Netflix’s On My Block and readers of Elizabeth Acevedo and Angie Thomas will love this debut novel about a girl whose life is turned upside down after one local act of vandalism throws both her relationships and neighborhood into turmoil.

Chinelo, or Nelo as her best friend Kate calls her, is all about her neighborhood Ginger East. She loves its chill vibe, ride-or-die sense of community, and the memories she has growing up there with her friends. Ginger East isn’t what it used to be though. After a deadly incident at the local arcade, most of her friends’ families moved away. Kate, whose family owns the local corner store, is still there and as long as that stays constant, Nelo’s good.

When Kate’s parent’s store is vandalized and the vandal still at large, Nelo is shaken to her core. And then the police and the media get involved and more of the outside world descends upon Ginger East with promises to “fix the neighborhood.” Suddenly, Nelo finds herself in the middle of a drama unfolding on a national scale.

Worse yet, Kate is acting strange. She’s pushing Nelo away at the exact moment they need each other most. Now Nelo’s entire world is morphing into something she hates and she must figure out how to get things back on track or risk losing everything—and everyone—she loves.

I saw Like Home compared to In the Heights, which is one of my favorite musicals, so this book is defiantly on my radar.

 

Release Date: February 23, 2021Love is for Losers
Find it: Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound, Bookshop

This is a laugh-out-loud exploration of sexuality, family, female friendship, grief, and community. With the heart and hilarity of Netflix’s critically-acclaimed Sex Education, Wibke Brueggemann’s sex positive debut Love Is for Losers is required reading for Generation Z teens.

Did you know you can marry yourself? How strange / brilliant is that?

Fifteen-year-old Phoebe thinks falling in love is vile and degrading, and vows never to do it. Then, due to circumstances not entirely in her control, she finds herself volunteering at a local thrift shop. There she meets Emma . . . who might unwittingly upend her whole theory on life.

I love a good romcom!

 

 

 

Some Other Now

Release Date: February 23, 2021
Find it: Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound, Bookshop

This Is Us for teens, this luminous and heartbreaking contemporary novel follows a girl caught between two brothers as the three of them navigate family, loss, and love over the course of two summers. For fans of Far From the Tree, Emergency Contact, and Nina LaCour.

Before she kissed one of the Cohen boys, seventeen-year-old Jessi Rumfield knew what it was like to have a family—even if, technically, that family didn’t belong to her. She’d spent her childhood in the house next door, challenging Rowan Cohen to tennis matches while his older brother, Luke, studied in the background and Mel watched over the three like the mother Jessi always wished she had.

But then everything changed. It’s been almost a year since Jessi last visited the Cohen house. Rowan is gone. Mel is in remission and Luke hates Jessi for the role she played in breaking his family apart. Now Jessi spends her days at a dead-end summer job avoiding her real mother, who suddenly wants to play a role in Jessi’s life after being absent for so long. But when Luke comes home from college, it’s hard to ignore the past. And when he asks Jessi to pretend to be his girlfriend for the final months of Mel’s life, Jessi finds herself drawn back into the world of the Cohens. Everything’s changed, but Jessi can’t help wanting to be a Cohen, even if it means playing pretend for one final summer.

This Is Us is one of my favorite shows! So I’m excited to how Some Other Now compares—I hope this means there’s a mixed timeline.

 

MazieRelease Date: February 23, 2021
Find it: Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound, Bookshop

An eighteen-year-old aspiring actress trades in starry Nebraska skies for the bright lights of 1950s Broadway in this show-stopping novel from award-winning author Melanie Crowder.

Mazie has always longed to be on Broadway. But growing up in her small Nebraska town, that always seemed like an impossible dream. So when an opportunity presents itself to spend six weeks auditioning, Mazie jumps at the chance, leaving behind everything—and everyone—she’s ever known.

New York City is a shock to the senses: thrilling, but lonely. Auditions are brutal. Mazie’s homesick and she misses the boyfriend whose heart she broke when she left. Nothing is as she expected.

With money running out, and faced with too many rejections to count, Mazie is more determined than ever to land a role. But when she discovers that booking a job might mean losing sight of herself, everything Mazie always thought she wanted is called into question.

Mazie is the story of a girl caught between two lives—and two loves—as she navigates who she is, what matters most, and the cost of following her dream.

Broadway in the 1950s?! Sign me up!

 

Which February YA book releases are you most excited for?

1 Comment

  • Reply Louie Mattox January 29, 2021 at 10:24 AM

    All of these look so good, I am especially curious about Some Other Now and A Taste Of Love!

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