So 2016 may not have, overall, been the best year — but it certainly didn’t hinder the crazy amount of great books to hit the shelves this year in every genre, especially of the Young Adult variety.
Narrowing our picks down was certainly a tough one, but we wanted to make sure that there was a little something for everyone. From fantasy to non fiction to just sweet tales, here are some of the best YA books of 2016:
A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J Maas
What is a YA list without mentioning Sarah J Maas? The second book in the A Court of Thorns And Roses series was definitely Maas’ winner this year. The book took the story of Hades and Persephone to a crazy level — and it was just so good. It has a solid 4.74/5 rating on Goodreads, so if you haven’t started this series, it really is time you get on that train.
Props also go to Maas’ second release this year, Empire of Storms. Girl’s a MACHINE!
Jerkbait by Mia Siegert
This book was on our most anticipated reads of 2016 list, and it definitely delivered. Jerkbait is a novel about twin brothers, one of whom is a top NHL prospect — who happens to be gay. The story gives insight to how difficult the life of an athlete is when you don’t conform to the ‘societal norms’ of the sport.
Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare
Fans of Cassandra Clare couldn’t be happier to dive back into the Shadowhunter world with her latest installment – Lady Midnight. The novel has something for all fans from a killer setting to fantastic characters.
The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater
The Raven King marks the final novel in Maggie Stiefvater’s Raven Cycle. Fans were thoroughly satisfied with the ending of this series — so if you haven’t started reading this series you need to do it. Just look at that cover – you have to trust a cover like that.
Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys
Who doesn’t like a great historical fiction novel that will rip your heart out? Salt to the Sea is about the tragedy of a ship full of refugees in World War II. It’s a heartbreaker, folks. You know you want to read it.
This is Where it Ends by Marieke Nijkamp
From one heartbreaker to the next, This is Where it Ends takes place over just 54 minutes. Those 54 minutes, however, occur while a school is locked in an auditorium with a man and his gun. This book will take your breath away. You will not be able to put it down for even a second.
The Thousandth Floor by Katharine McGee
Just when you think the world doesn’t need more dystopian stories, we get this novel about an one thousand floor building in New York City that basically covers all of Manhattan. Of course, the book starts with a twist — someone falling off the building. Told from multiple perspectives and packed with drama, love and deceit, this is perfect for fans of Pretty Little Liars and Gossip Girl.
The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon
If you loved Yoon’s Everything, Everything be prepared to love this one even more. Yoon doesn’t succumb to the dreaded sophomore curse with The Sun is Also a Star –and again, just look at that amazing cover.
Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake
Imagine a world where every generation a set of triplets is born — and one will reign…but only when they are the only ones left alive. Yeah, we know, intense right? Blake’s novel makes the perfect start to an intricate, twist filled fantasy series. All we have to say is, that ending though.
Born a Crime by Trevor Noah
Okay, so this technically isn’t a YA book — but it is definitely a book that can be enjoyed by YA readers. Mostly, we wanted to add this in here because it’s the overall favourite read of the year of this author — and everyone should read this book of essays about Noah’s life. It’s hilarious, dark, sad, happy, and everything you could possibly want in a book. Read it.