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Why Not YA?

Why Not YA?

YA is a genre that wears its heart on its sleeve. Whether you're a long time lover of the YA genre or you're giving it a try for the very first time, we hope you'll find something to treasure in this playlist of our YA favorites.

Playlist Tags: Friendly City Books genre: YA Nonfiction mood: curious topic: own voices topic: young adult audience: young adult audience: the young-at-heart audience: young adults mood: hopeful audience: ya topic: ya

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Cemetery Boys

By Aiden Thomas
Narrated by: Avi Roque
Length: 13 hours 47 minutes

Cemetery Boys

“"Listening to Cemetery Boys made me smile. A lot. Aiden Thomas presents a story of persistence, mystery, and finding one’s place in the world. Yadriel, a trans, teenage, latinx boy, lives in a family of brujos and brujas. After coming out as trans his family does not know where he fits within their traditions. With the help of his opinionated cousin Maritza, Yadriel completes the ceremony to become a brujo in secret and accidentally summons the wrong ghost: Julian, a high energy boy from his school. Yadriel, Julian and Maritza set out to solve the mystery of Julian’s death, and to release his spirit. Of course, to make things more awkward, Yadriel develops a crush on the spirit boy. What more could one ask for? Thomas creates a magical but real world highlighting family dynamics surrounding trans identity within a gendered society, the need to prove oneself, and the importance of connecting to family. This book may sound spooky, but instead the story is feel-good, heartwarming, and silly at times; it’s all about celebrating life and being who you are."”

Content image Emma, Content
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Furia

By Yamile Saied Méndez
Narrated by: Sol Madariaga
Length: 8 hours 51 minutes

A REESE WITHERSPOON x HELLO SUNSHINE BOOK CLUB YA PICK
Recipient of the 2021 Pura Belpré Young Adult Author Medal

One of BuzzFeed's Must-Read YA Books of 2020
A Best Book of the Year: Cosmopolitan * Kirkus Reviews * SheReads * New York Public Library 


“An engrossing #OwnVoices novel.”
PopSugar

“This book will set your dreams on fire . . . It’s... Read more »

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Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You

A Remix of the National Book Award-winning Stamped from the Beginning

By Jason Reynolds & Ibram X. Kendi
Narrated by: Jason Reynolds
Length: 4 hours 11 minutes

Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You

“What an amazing, passionate and fast-paced take on Kendi’s original Stamped from the Beginning! It takes you on a journey of racist ideas from then to now, the how and why it still lingers on. Reynolds’s engaging way with words will connect with young adults, and everyone else too. This is a book for everyone to read, so that we all can do better in identifying and stamping out racist thoughts.”

Newtonville Books image Anne, Newtonville Books
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Special offer

Free audiobook with membership

For a limited time, when you sign up for a new monthly membership with code CHOOSEINDIE, we’ll give you a bonus audiobook! That means you’ll have 2 audiobook credits to redeem from the start.

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Children of Blood and Bone

Legacy of Orisha: Book #1

By Tomi Adeyemi
Narrated by: Bahni Turpin
Length: 17 hours 44 minutes

Children of Blood and Bone

“A sprawling fantasy teeming with deep and meaningful magic. One of the things I like most about this debut is that it raises very real and important issues of our time through multiple character's perspectives. No character is one-dimensional, and every character must learn from failure and introspection to become who they were meant to be.”

Mysterious Galaxy Books image Kelly, Mysterious Galaxy Books
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Grown

By Tiffany D. Jackson
Narrated by: Joniece Abbott-Pratt
Length: 8 hours 18 minutes

An instant New York Times bestseller! “Grown exposes the underbelly of a tough conversation, providing a searing examination of misogynoir, rape culture, and the vulnerability of young black girls. Groundbreaking, heart-wrenching, and essential reading for all in the #MeToo era.” —Dhonielle Clayton, New York Times bestselling author of The...

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Clap When You Land

By Elizabeth Acevedo
Narrated by: Elizabeth Acevedo & Melania-Luisa Marte
Length: 5 hours 32 minutes

Clap When You Land

“Clap When You Land is a story of sisterhood unlike any I've experienced before, with characters as multi-faceted as the places they come from. The free verse is rhythmic and pounding in all the right places, soft and lyrical in all the others. And for a story so rife with grief and struggle and anxiety and (the list goes on)... it's hopeful, but not without being real. Acevedo proves that tragedy can bring strangers together and make them family in ways both literal and metaphorical, and gives voice to the survivors whose pain outlasts the media coverage every time. This is one to be savored, and enjoyed by readers of all ages.”

Second Star to the Right image Britt, Second Star to the Right
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Fable

A Novel
Fable: Book #1

By Adrienne Young
Narrated by: Emma Lysy
Length: 8 hours 51 minutes

Fable

“So I finally jumped on the "Fable" train and I'm so glad that I have. Adrienne Young weaves an amazing tale of sand and sea that's lush and beautiful. It was so much fun to listen to and I'm super excited to dive into the next book in the duology!”

Story on the Square image Katlin, Story on the Square
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Punching the Air

By Ibi Zoboi & Yusef Salaam
Narrated by: Ethan Herisse
Length: 4 hours 28 minutes

New York Times and USA Today bestseller * Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor * Walter Award Winner * Goodreads Finalist for Best Teen Book of the Year * Time Magazine Best Book of the Year * Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year * Shelf Awareness Best Book of the Year * School Library Journal Best Book of the Year * Kirkus Best Book of the...

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Pet

By Akwaeke Emezi
Narrated by: Christopher Myers
Length: 5 hours 32 minutes

National Book Award Finalist

Stonewall Book Award Winner

"[A] beautiful, genre-expanding debut...Pet is a nesting doll of creative possibilities." (The New York Times)

The award-winning, genre-defying novel by the New York Times best-selling author of The Death of Vivek Oji that explores themes of identity and justice and asks: How do you share the... Read more »

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The Gilded Ones

The Gilded Ones: Book #1

By Namina Forna
Narrated by: Shayna Small
Length: 12 hours 46 minutes

The Gilded Ones

“This is a bold and powerful book about the bonds of sisterhood and finding your strength. This story is as rich and vivid as the cover is (which is AMAZING)—a tantalizing fantasy with a splash of mystery, fierce, magical warriors, dangerous monsters, and a war-ravaged empire. Absolutely fantastic!”

The Well-Read Moose image Anna, The Well-Read Moose
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Lobizona

A Novel
Wolves of No World: Book #1

By Romina Garber
Narrated by: Sol Madariaga
Length: 12 hours 33 minutes

Lobizona

“In LABIZONA, Romina Garber weaves Argentinian folklore with the ache to belong somewhere completely. She plays with identity, gender, and family to create a magical landscape in which an entire culture must recognize that they have been complicit in a societal structure that hurts anyone who does not fit in. Manuela is undocumented in both worlds, which means her story is unwritten, ready for her to choose how she wants it to be told. At times these choices are between two heartbreaking options, but making the choice empowers Manuela and those around her to not let others dictate their lives. There is a lot going on in this book, but I enjoyed getting to know the characters and look forward to following their story in the future. Content warnings for ICE raids, police brutality, family separation, discussions of forced pregnancy, homophobia.”

Page 158 Books image Faith, Page 158 Books
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Iron Widow

Iron Widow: Book #1

By Xiran Jay Zhao
Narrated by: Rong Fu
Length: 12 hours 13 minutes

Iron Widow

“A young woman still reeling from the loss of her sister in a horribly unequal society based around defending themselves from an alien threat sets readers up for a whirlwind of an adventure as Zetian seeks both revenge and a way to keep other women from falling to the same fate her sister did. Power and privilege afforded to gender are both explored and taken advantage of in a world where women magic-users are named and judged based only on what they can add to their male partners, but the story is never as simple as it seems at first. The conclusions we reach are as dazzling and wondrous as the settings we visit!”

CoffeeTree Books image Eric, CoffeeTree Books
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The Black Flamingo

By Dean Atta
Narrated by: Dean Atta
Length: 3 hours 40 minutes

The Black Flamingo

“Michael is a mixed-race gay teen growing up in London who goes to college and can't find a place to fit in, until he discovers The Drag Society. This story, told in poetry, is full of stunning language and the joy of finding your place in the world.”

Blue Willow Bookshop image Ann, Blue Willow Bookshop
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Fat Chance, Charlie Vega

By Crystal Maldonado
Narrated by: Carla Vega
Length: 11 hours 4 minutes

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... Read more »

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Tokyo Ever After

A Novel
Tokyo Ever After: Book #1

By Emiko Jean
Narrated by: Ali Ahn
Length: 9 hours 33 minutes

"Narrator Ali Ahn gives this young adult rom-com fun doses of personality and sass...Ahn's accents and Japanese pronunciations ring true as she clearly differentiates characters of different ages and nationalities." -- AudioFile Magazine

A REESE WITHERSPOON x HELLO SUNSHINE BOOK CLUB YA PICK!

The Princess Diaries
meets Crazy Rich Asians in Emiko...

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An Emotion of Great Delight

By Tahereh Mafi
Narrated by: Lanna Joffrey
Length: 6 hours 32 minutes

From bestselling and National Book Award–nominated author Tahereh Mafi comes a stunning novel about love and loneliness, navigating the hyphen of dual identity, and reclaiming your right to joy—even when you’re trapped in the amber of sorrow.

It’s 2003, several months since the US officially declared war on Iraq, and the American political world...

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Felix Ever After

By Kacen Callender
Narrated by: Logan Rozos
Length: 8 hours 23 minutes

A Stonewall Honor Book * A Time Magazine Best YA Book of All Time

From Stonewall and Lambda Award–winning author Kacen Callender comes a revelatory YA novel about a transgender teen grappling with identity and self-discovery while falling in love for the first time.

Felix Love has never been in love—and, yes, he’s painfully aware of the irony. He...

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Legendborn

The Legendborn Cycle

By Tracy Deonn
Narrated by: Joniece Abbott-Pratt
Length: 18 hours 54 minutes

If you enjoyed Children of Blood and Bone, then you’ll love Legendborn.

“If you’ve been thinking about trying audiobooks, I recommend LEGENDBORN by Tracy Deonn as a great starting point! The reader, Joniece Abbott-Pratt, completely transported me to the Southern Gothic world of a secret society on the campus of UNC-Chapel Hill (down to the hot sauce on hash browns). With a complex magic system intricately tied to ancestry and world history, Arthurian legend, demon battles, and just enough romance, this was one of those books that I thought about when I couldn’t have it playing in my headphones! Deonn is a master, bringing Brianna, the main character, to name and disrupt white male supremacy while working through the grief of her own story and that of her mothers before her. I also loved the queer representation in secondary characters, including a squire with they/them pronouns. I can't wait for the sequel and to follow Deonn's career!”

Lark & Owl image Kim, Lark & Owl
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Stay Gold

By Tobly McSmith
Narrated by: Theo Germaine & Phoebe Strole
Length: 9 hours 19 minutes

Debut author Tobly McSmith delivers a coming-of-age teen love story about a transgender boy who’s going stealth at his new Texas high school and a cisgender girl who is drawn to him, even as she’s counting down the days until graduation. Perfect for fans of David Levithan, Becky Albertalli, and Jenny Han.

Pony plans to fly under the radar this...

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Firekeeper's Daughter

By Angeline Boulley
Narrated by: Isabella Star LaBlanc
Length: 14 hours 13 minutes

If you enjoyed There There, then you’ll love Firekeeper's Daughter.

Firekeeper's Daughter is a wonder! We so rarely hear YA through an Indigenous people's voice and this book does it so very well. Main character Daunis Lorenzo Fontaine lives a fine line between her white French Canadian mother and her Ojibwe father in a complicated family dynamic. She is smart, hockey talented, driven, and tenacious as she navigates the murder of her best friend Lily, rampant drug culture, and the journey to find herself. Angeline Boulley seamlessly incorporates the Ojbiwe language and lifeways that both inform and educate the reader in this amazing story that will stay with me long after I have moved onto other books. A MUST-read (or listen)!”

Rediscovered Books image Rebecca, Rediscovered Books
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