UKYA

Celebrating Young Adult fiction by UK authors


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Illegal (The Hayling Cycle Book 2) by Miriam Halahmy

13516934‘If Jemma had lived, none of this would have happened. I’d have been too busy to get dragged into this filthy, illegal business…’

Since Lindy’s baby sister died, her family have been caught in a downward spiral. Her brothers are in prison and her parents have given up. Soon Lindy is out of her depth too, caught in the centre of an international drugs ring, with no way out.

Then Lindy finds help from an unexpected ally: weird, mute Karl from school, and together they plan a daring and desperate escape.

But when you’re in this deep, can you ever be free?


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Half Bad by Sally Green

Unknown-1You can’t read, can’t write, but you heal fast, even for a witch.

You get sick if you stay indoors after dark.

You hate White Witches but love Annalise, who is one.

You’ve been kept in a cage since you were fourteen.

All you’ve got to do is escape and find Mercury, the Black Witch who eats boys. And do that before your seventeenth birthday.

Easy.


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Nowhere by Jon Robinson

Unknown‘No one’s coming for us.
Not our families, not the police.
No one.’

Alyn, Jes, Ryan and Elsa are Nowhere. A concrete cube in the middle of a dense forest.

Imprisoned inside are one hundred teenagers from all over the country. They’re all criminals. But none of them remember committing any crimes.

Who has put them there. What do their captors want? And how will they ever break free . . . ?


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Angel’s Fury by Bryony Pearce

10165036I’ve started to have dreams while I’m awake. I remember music I’ve never heard. . . I’ve got all this extra stuff in my head, but I’m forgetting things from my own life. I feel like I’m being taken over.

One fallen angel walks the earth to bring mankind to its destruction, turning love into hate, forgiveness into blame, and hope into despair. Through the fires of hell he will come to torment one girl’s dreams.

Every time Cassie Farrier tries to sleep, she is plagued by visions of a death: A little girl called Zillah. A victim of the holocaust. In desperation Cassie is sent for treatment in an old manor house. There she meets other children just like her. Including Seth, who looks so familiar. Her dream becomes a nightmare—and then reality.


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Author Gary Meehan’s Top 10 UK YA Books

Gary_Meehan_520x520Gary Meehan is the author of True Fire. He’s chosen his Top 10 “in no particular order.”

The Bone Dragon by Alexia Casale

A girl recovers from post-traumatic stress disorder by retreating into a fantasy world. Or is it fantasy? Beautifully written and thought provoking.

images-4The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13¾ by Sue Townsend

I’ve grown up with Adrian these past — oh my god, thirty years (pause to contemplate mortality). The first remains a devastatingly funny read for anyone who’s ever worried about doing the right thing, the pretty girl in the class, and how long their thingy is.

Geek Girl by Holly Smale

A witty, charming tale of a bullied geeky girl who accidentally becomes a model. Plenty of heart and one of the most surprising meet-cute scenes you’re likely to read.

18482265Boys Don’t Knit by TS Easton

A spiritual successor to Adrian Mole, in that it’s a told as teenage boy’s diary. Very funny, but with a serious message. Many YA books encourage girls to do ‘boy’ things; this one lets boys know it’s okay to be ‘girly’. I still have no idea how knitting actually works though.

Heart-Shaped Bruise by Tanya Byrne

Proof you don’t need a likeable or even sympathetic heroine to make a story compelling. You know something bad’s gonna happen, but you can’t stop reading.

UnknownNowhere by Jon Robinson

Ah, some good old-fashioned sci-fi. An intriguing premise — why have all these kids been snatched and locked up — a fast-paced adventure, and hints of something manipulating the fundamental nature of the universe.

Trouble by Non Pratt

An honest story of teenage lust and its consequences, shot through with comic moments. Read it, kids, and let your next purchase be a jumbo pack of condoms.

Unknown-1Half Bad by Sally Green

A tale of brutality and paranoia, unbending bureaucracy and the nature of good and evil — a bit of light reading, then. Tense and thought-provoking.

Code Red Lipstick by Sarah Sky

A fun, lively adventure with a kick-ass, kick-head, kick-everything heroine. Not everything has to be dripping in angst, you know.

A Tale Etched in Blood and Hard Black Pencil by Christopher Brookmyre

My stretching-the-definition-of-YA entry. It’s a tale of bunch of kids growing up wrapped in a murder mystery set when the kids are adults, but it’s the acutely observed school scenes that stick in the mind. If it’s a measure of book you’re a little heartbroken to leave the characters behind, then this measures up.