YA Fantasy Book Recommendations

by Brandi Ziegler

Reading is a discount ticket to everywhere.

~Mary Schmich


At times I can go on a YA Fantasy reading binge. That’s what February and March has been all about. There are two books in particular that you have to read.

At first I didn’t’ think I’d read TORN because… well, I have a confession to make. I’m not a huge fan of urban fantasy. Give me medieval worlds with swords and dragons and royalty. I’ll even take dwarves. A modern day high school with an underworld of magic and creatures only seen in nightmares… not so much. They’re growing on me, but I will always be a diehard epic fantasy fan.

Anyway, what drew me to TORN is the fact that the MC isn’t the chosen one. Mo is the chosen one’s best friend. And she’ll have to do because the chosen one is dead. Here’s a description from Erica’s website (where you can also read an excerpt):


Mo Fitzgerald knows about secrets. But when she witnesses her best friend’s murder, she discovers Verity was hiding things she never could have guessed. To find the answers she needs and the vengeance she craves, Mo—quiet, ordinary, unmagical Mo—will have to enter a world of raw magic and shifting alliances. And she’ll have to choose between two very different, equally dangerous guys—protective, duty-bound Colin and brash, mysterious Luc. One wants to save her, one wants to claim her. Which would you choose?


I love the concept of this story – not to mention the hot guys. I totally intend to check out TANGLED, Book II, and you should too after reading TORN.


The cover of THE GIRL OF FIRE AND THORNS alone made me want to read it for two reasons:

  1. It’s GORGEOUS!
  2. I spotted the name of one of my all-time favorite YA Fantasy writers, Tamora Pierce. Her cover quote says “Engrossing”. That was enough to convince me. Here’s how Rae describes her novel on her website:



    Elisa is the chosen one.

    But she is also the younger of two princesses, the one who has never done anything remarkable. She can’t see how she ever will.

    Now, on her sixteenth birthday, she has become the secret wife of a handsome and worldly king—a king whose country is in turmoil. A king who needs the chosen one, not a failure of a princess.

    And he’s not the only one who needs her. Savage enemies seething with dark magic are hunting her. A daring, determined revolutionary thinks she could be his people’s savior. And he looks at her in a way that no man has ever looked at her before. Soon it is not just her life, but her very heart that is at stake.

    Elisa could be everything to those who need her most. If the prophecy is fulfilled. If she finds the power deep within herself. If she doesn’t die young.

    Most of the chosen do.


Elisa isn’t pretty or thin, and would rather eat scones all day than be queen. But her circumstances force her to become a strong, resourceful young woman. Carson’s world is totally realized and I was hooked from page one, Elisa’s wedding day. The ending is completely satisfying, but I’m still left craving the next book in the series. THE CROWN OF EMBERS comes out in September. Squee! If you’re a diehard epic fantasy geek like me, you will love this book.

I’m trying to mix things up, so I recently downloaded a YA dystopian to my Nook, Lissa Price’s STARTERS. I couldn’t resist buying Melina Marchetta’s FROI OF THE EXILES too. Hello! FINNIKIN OF THE ROCK sequel – couldn’t resist! I’ll let you know what I think of these soon.


Have you read any of these books? Do you have a preference on the type of fantasy you read?

God bless and happy writing and reading.