Bookstacked’s Best YA Books of 2019


The best YA books of the year, as chosen by the Bookstacked reviews team.

From dangerous dragons to royal romances and space cadets, YA took readers to familiar and different worlds this year — and Bookstacked’s reviews team was along for the ride.

Here are the best YA books of 2019, as selected by our reviewers.

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Best YA Books of 2019

The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon

‘The Priory of the Orange Tree’ by Samantha Shannon. (Bloomsbury)
A novel filled with representation, female power and, of course, dragons. Samantha Shannon’s standalone epic is not to be missed, and was easily one of the highlights of the year. Read the review

Sword and Pen by Rachel Caine

‘Sword and Pen’ by Rachel Caine. (Allison and Busby)
Caine deals with trauma, tyrants and magic in this emotional conclusion to a fantastic series. It was, undoubtedly, a worthy finale. Read the review

Bloodwitch by Susan Dennard

‘Bloodwitch’ by Susan Dennard (Tor Teen)
Susan Dennard pulls out all the stops in this action-packed novel! Now that the Witchlands series is fleshed out, readers will be able to fully immerse themselves into this world and fall deeper in love with its characters. Read the review

Pumpkinheads by Rainbow Rowell & Faith Erin Hicks

‘Pumpkinheads’ by Rainbow Rowell and Faith Erin Hicks. (First Second)
Everything about this graphic novel is sweet as pumpkin pie. The romance at its gooey center will warm readers’ hearts and leave them with a smile on their faces. Read the review

Call Down the Hawk by Maggie Stiefvater

‘Call Down the Hawk’ by Maggie Stiefvater. (Scholastic Press)
Maggie Stiefvater has perfected the art of character-driven adventure with this novel, where living dreams, cosmic swords and art forgers are more common than one would think. The sequel cannot come fast enough. Read the review

Descendant of the Crane by Joan He

‘Descendant of the Crane’ by Joan He (Albert Whitman & Company)
With comparisons to ‘Game of Thrones,’ Joan He’s debut delivers with plenty of pain and heartache included. Her captivating writing will have readers on their toes from the amazing world-building to the crazy family dynamics. Read the review

Aurora Rising by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman

‘Aurora Rising’ by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman (Knopf Books for Young Readers)
This is a story about lost souls, kids who have been discarded — kids that are meant for more. They’re the group of misfits the galaxy never knew they needed and readers are sure to love squad 312. Read the review

Red, White and Royal Blue by Casey McQuinston

‘Red, White and Royal Blue’ by Casey McQuiston (St. Martin’s Griffin)
This novel is the perfect escapist fantasy. Full of representation and almost sickeningly sweet (but in a good way), reading it felt like falling into a warm and comforting hug. Read the review

The Good Luck Girls by Charlotte Nicole Davis

‘The Good Luck Girls’ by Charlotte Nicole Davis (Tor Teen)
This reimagined, feminist Western was the perfect mix of rebel women, heists and heart-stopping action. It takes readers through the story at breakneck speed and is the perfect choice for those who want some excellent world-building and social commentary. Read the review

Spin the Dawn by Elizabeth Lin

‘Spin the Dawn’ by Elizabeth Lim. (Penguin Random House)
This Chinese-inspired tale will take readers on a heartbreaking adventure! They’ll come out of this tale knowing they can accomplish anything as long as they believe in themselves. Read the review

Vow of Thieves by Mary E. Pearson

‘Vow of Thieves’ by Mary E. Pearson (Henry Holt and Co.)
Fans of the Remnant Chronicles won’t be disappointed with the adventure Mary E. Pearson takes readers on in this book. With her lush writing, there are even bigger twists and turns with a sprinkle of romance that will have you quickly turning the pages! Read the review

The Never Tilting World by Rin Chupeco

‘The Never Tilting World’ by Rin Chupeco (HarperTeen)
This story has it all. Lovable and captivating characters, a fast-paced plot, intriguing lore and a drive to be better at the center of it. Definitely a strong first novel in an intriguing series. Read the review

The Rise of Kyoshi by F.C. Yee

‘The Rise of Kyoshi’ by F.C. Yee (Abrams Books)
More than a simple ‘Avatar the Last Airbender’ spin-off, Rise of Kyoshi operates on the highest levels of storytelling, packed with engaging characters, creeping suspense and mind-numbing twists. Read the review

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