Young Adult Special Title List


YA writer Kate Hart assessed over the covers of 900+ Young Adult novels

As our Young Adult Special Titles List was only revised two months ago, we did not expect that many new nominations this time around – after all, with the last revision the number of titles on the list had almost doubled, and many of AAR’s staff had already entered their favorites then. We were pleasantly surprised to find that there are several fascinating titles – older ones as well as more recent ones – we had missed so far, and which we are now able to add, among them the creepy 1980s story A Deadly Game of Magic by Joan Lowery Nixon and Marissa Meyer’s Lunar Chronicles series, which is a mixture of dystopia, SF and steampunk, but gets listed under Fairy Tale Retellings here (in case you were wondering).

One reader pointed out that Pushing the Limits, which we had included, is actually only the first volume in a very good series, so that entry was changed.

Quite a few male/male YA romances were nominated and are included now, but not a single female/female one! We don’t usually add further titles when we have just published a revised list, but in this case we would be prepared to make an exception. Come on, does anyone know a very good female/female YA romance that should be recommended?

The second fairly large group of books nominated were the New Adult romances. We considered carefully whether we wanted to include New Adult on our Young Adult list, and in the end decided against it. Sadly, this means that a number of very good books did not end up on the list, but it couldn’t be helped. For contemporaries, we decided to draw the line at the main protagonists being already at college. (For classics, historicals and paranormals this distinction need not necessarily apply.) There may be a NA special titles list in the future, but for now we want to wait and watch how the subgenre evolves further. Readers particularly interested in NA can find those NA titles reviewed at AAR easily by using Power Search.

We hope you will be able to find some nice recommendation on the YA list, but if your main reading focus is on adult romances, come back here in two weeks’ time, when we are planning to open five more Special Titles Lists!

Rike Horstmann, LinnieGayl Kimmel and Cindy Smith


This entry was posted in Cindy AAR, LinnieGayl AAR, Rike AAR, Special Titles Lists. Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to Young Adult Special Title List

  1. Paola says:

    I had suggested Kate Rothwell’s Thank You, Mrs M.
    Wasn’t it good enough?

    • LinnieGayl says:

      We’ll check but Rike and I are both away from home for about a week (in completely different continents) so it might not be immediate. Sorry for the delay in a response.

    • CindyS says:

      Hi Paola,

      At this time, there are not enough reviews of this book to have it make the list. Although it did get 4.5 stars from Romantic Times, the book has not had enough exposure to readers or reviewers. If the book was reviewed here at AAR and had received a grade over B- it would automatically be added to the list. Since it has not been reviewed here we need at least 2 to 3 reputable sources giving the book an excellent grade.

      I hope this helps answer the question.
      Thank you

    • Rike says:

      In addition to what Cindy says, the book’s main protagonist is already at college. In our eyes, that places the book in the NA category, and makes it ineligible for the YA list. (Similarly, Dear Mr. Knightley by Katherine Reay, another spin on Daddy-Long-Legs, was also rejected for the list because it is NA.)

  2. CarolineAAR says:

    Love the list, the new format, and all the new suggestions! I know this list was a major undertaking, and I am delighted with the results. Thanks for all the hard work!

  3. Aur3 says:

    For the less well-known/out-of-print titles that made the list, like Year of the Unicorn, did anyone from your team actually go to the library and read the book to discover its quality, or were you able to talk to people who had read it and could vouch for it?

    • CindyS says:

      All the titles on the list were carefully looked over and anything that was foreign to us was vetted through online reviews (multiple) and if that was not possible we passed the list through the AAR Family. In all, there had to be at least 20 different people who looked over the list and helped us make decisions. Not only that but we had a few young adults look at the list also to let us know if we were on track.

      I hope this helps.

      • Aur3 says:

        Thanks for the response. I’m glad titles where online reviews were unavailable were not immediately abandoned but given a chance through the AAR Family.

  4. Aur3 says:

    If you’re accepting manga for the list, I’d suggest Revolutionary Girl Utena by Chiho Saito for the female/female romance.

  5. tehonsiirto says:

    I read a lot of books and look’s my favorite book was not nominated ,lately i been more reading about bearing and other automotive stuff cause i got a new car and it is important that you know a little bit about some part of it.

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