Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday [1]: Top Ten 2015 Debuts

 For more information on the host of Top Ten Tuesday and how to add your own post, click on the banner!

*rubs hands together evilly*

Oh, yes. I've been looking forward to this list since September 2014. You know what the best thing is about a fresh, hopeful new year? 

(Besides, you know, kicking the door shut on 2014 and all its awfulness.)

The debuts. And this year in particular, there are so many rocking Fifteeners that even with ten slots to fill, I'm sure I'm going to look back, hit my forehead and groan that I missed someone super important. 

So, just know that I love them all and it's worth a Google or a trip to the Fearless Fifteeners' webpage or GoodReads to catch them all. 

Now, let's get down to the list, in no particular order...

(And, since I'm being unusually lazy today, you can click on the titles to see the awesome associated covers and release dates.

Note that I wasn't lazy enough to skimp on the GIFs.)

Missouri, 1849: Samantha dreams of moving back to New York to be a professional musician—not an easy thing if you’re a girl, and harder still if you’re Chinese. But a tragic accident dashes any hopes of fulfilling her dream, and instead, leaves her fearing for her life.

With the help of a runaway slave named Annamae, Samantha flees town for the unknown frontier. But life on the Oregon Trail is unsafe for two girls, so they disguise themselves as Sammy and Andy, two boys headed for the California gold rush. Sammy and Andy forge a powerful bond as they each search for a link to their past, and struggle to avoid any unwanted attention. But when they cross paths with a band of cowboys, the light-hearted troupe turn out to be unexpected allies. With the law closing in on them and new setbacks coming each day, the girls quickly learn that there are not many places to hide on the open trail.

Heroines. Cowboys. The Gold Rush. Diversity.

Give me one reason why I should not be excited for this. There's a good reason it's already getting accolades and Stacey deserves every single one. I'm waiting on pins and needles to see if NetGalley will make my dreams come true or if I'll just have to sit here and bite my nails until my library has a copy. 

NetGalley doesn't like me recently. Alas.

When you fall in love, you will carve out your heart and throw it into the deepest ocean. You will be all in—blood and salt.”

These are the last words Ash Larkin hears before her mother returns to the spiritual commune she escaped long ago. But when Ash follows her to Quivira, Kansas, something sinister and ancient waits among the rustling cornstalks of this village lost to time.
Full disclosure: I've talked to Kim a few times and she's quite lovely, but I promise I'm not playing favorites with this list and all the people on it that I've talked to before.

Anyway. I'm developing a taste recently for well-written YA horror. I blame Nova Ren Suma and her introducing me to Micol Ostan Harlow's Amity last year (yes, as inspired by the Amityville house and all its horrors). This sounds equally promising.  

Let us ignore the fact that this is a total GPOY of me after I consume horror in any form.

8. Conviction by Kelly Loy Gilbert 
"Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen."

Ten years ago, God gave Braden a sign, a promise that his family wouldn’t fall apart the way he feared.

But Braden got it wrong: his older brother, Trey, has been estranged from the family for almost as long, and his father, the only parent Braden has ever known, has been accused of murder. The arrest of Braden’s father, a well-known Christian radio host, has sparked national media attention. His fate lies in his son’s hands; Braden is the key witness in the upcoming trial.
Besides being Team "Kaye Should Move to Cali One Day" (which sounds particularly tempting on acrid days like today), Kelly's debut promises dark family ties, painful revelations and well-measured plot. I cannot wait.

Meet Scarlett, a smart, sarcastic, kick-butt, Muslim American heroine, ready to take on crime in her hometown of Las Almas. When a new case finds the private eye caught up in a centuries-old battle of evil genies and ancient curses, Scarlett discovers that her own family secrets may have more to do with the situation than she thinks -- and that cracking the case could lead to solving her father's murder.
A Muslim-American girl detective? Yes, yes, yes. I'm so eager to see how this will turn out.

6. The Sacred Lies of Minnow Bly by Stephanie Oakes

When seventeen-year-old Minnow stumbles out of the woods one winter morning, she is haunted and handless and covered in someone else’s blood. She has just escaped the strict religious commune run by a cruel man named the Prophet. In exchange for freedom, she leaves behind her family, her home, and Jude--an outsider boy who changed everything.

But the real world isn't the sanctuary Minnow imagined. Soon, she gets arrested and placed in juvenile detention. Now, Minnow is being questioned by an FBI psychiatrist about the night she escaped, the same night the Prophet was burned to death in his own home—a murder Minnow may be responsible for.

I've been coveting this one since I heard it was based on "The Girl with Silver Hands", since before it had a cover, since...has it been a good year since this deal was announced? I guess I can wait a little bit longer.

Literally me. Literally. Me.
5. Pretending To Be Erica by Michelle Painchaud

We Were Liars meets Heist Society in a riveting debut!

Seventeen-year-old Violet’s entire life has revolved around one thing: becoming Erica Silverman, an heiress kidnapped at age five and never seen again. Violet’s father, the best con man in Las Vegas, has a plan, chilling in its very specific precision. Violet shares a blood type with Erica; soon, thanks to surgery and blackmail, she has the same face, body, and DNA. She knows every detail of the Silvermans’ lives, as well as the PTSD she will have to fake around them. 

And then, when the time is right, she “reappears”—Erica Silverman, brought home by some kind of miracle. But she is also Violet, and she has a job: Stay long enough to steal the Silverman Painting, an Old Master legendary in the Vegas crime world.

So, Michelle is really cool, and so is that summary, just look. At. It. There's a reason this is one of those gilded in lights headliners in my personal "Must Read Before December 31st" list. I'm pinning my hopes on this - and most of these titles, actually - being some of the ARCs available at BEA.

Yeah, this is me just thinking of BEA.

4. Tiny Pretty Things by Sona Chairaipotra and Dhonielle Clayton

Gigi, Bette, and June, three top students at an exclusive Manhattan ballet school, have seen their fair share of drama. Free-spirited new girl Gigi just wants to dance—but the very act might kill her. Privileged New Yorker Bette's desire to escape the shadow of her ballet star sister brings out a dangerous edge in her. 
 And perfectionist June needs to land a lead role this year or her controlling mother will put an end to her dancing dreams forever. When every dancer is both friend and foe, the girls will sacrifice, manipulate, and backstab to be the best of the best.
Okay, when it comes to Sona and Dhonielle, I might have to admit a bias in advance. Sona and I had such lovely conversations last year at BEA and even though I've only spoken online with Dhonielle, I just adore them both. Also, cutthroat ballerinas? Yes, please. 

When I think cutthroat high school students, I expect a lot of this.

 3. The Girl At Midnight by Melissa Gray

Beneath the streets of New York City live the Avicen, an ancient race of people with feathers for hair and magic running through their veins. Age-old enchantments keep them hidden from humans. All but one. Echo is a runaway pickpocket who survives by selling stolen treasures on the black market, and the Avicen are the only family she's ever known.

Echo is clever and daring, and at times she can be brash, but above all else she's fiercely loyal. So when a centuries-old war crests on the borders of her home, she decides it's time to act.
Okay, so some might say the secret race beneath NYC thing is overdone, but...No, I don't think it is. And I mean, this is Melissa. She went to Yale and learned how to ride a horse and shoot a bow at the same time. She's one of the best resources I know for video games. No way that this isn't going to be anything but incredible.

Yeah. I wouldn't be surprised if she could do that, too.

LAIA is a Scholar living under the iron-fisted rule of the Martial Empire. When her brother is arrested for treason, Laia goes undercover as a slave at the empire’s greatest military academy in exchange for assistance from rebel Scholars who claim that they will help to save her brother from execution.

ELIAS is the academy’s finest soldier—and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias is considering deserting the military, but before he can, he’s ordered to participate in a ruthless contest to choose the next Martial emperor.

When Laia and Elias’s paths cross at the academy, they find that their destinies are more intertwined than either could have imagined and that their choices will change the future of the empire itself.
My mom could definitely tell you: I love Sabaa. Even though I've never met her in person - YET - or read her book - YET. She's just very sweet and talented and it's hard not to love her. Also, there is nothing in this summary to hate or be nervous about. At all. It deserves all the hype it's getting and I'm so excited that there's already a movie option out there.

*fans self* 

Me whenever someone mentions Sabaa's name. Seriously. Shameless fangirl.

 1. Written in the Stars by Aisha Saeed
Naila’s conservative immigrant parents have always said the same thing: She may choose what to study, how to wear her hair, and what to be when she grows up—but they will choose her husband. Following their cultural tradition, they will plan an arranged marriage for her. And until then, dating—even friendship with a boy—is forbidden. 

When Naila breaks their rule by falling in love with Saif, her parents are livid. Convinced she has forgotten who she truly is, they travel to Pakistan to visit relatives and explore their roots. But Naila’s vacation turns into a nightmare when she learns that plans have changed—her parents have found her a husband and they want her to marry him, now! Despite her greatest efforts, Naila is aghast to find herself cut off from everything and everyone she once knew. Her only hope of escape is Saif . . . if he can find her before it’s too late.
I think it's pretty obvious now that I'm ridiculously proud of Aisha Baji and all she does. I'm particularly glad that this will be a Muslim voice on the cultural issue of forced marriage, and one who is very happy with her own arranged marriage as well. I'm very sure this title is going to prove to be an important one for discussions and book clubs from here on out.

I already promised Aisha I'd be hand-selling this on her book birthday. I...doubt she'd appreciate this type of hand-selling, though.     


Post a Comment