It's that time of year yet again. After a very productive year and, as usual, never enough reading time which I blame on social media and too much daydreaming, it's time to reflect on some of my personal favourite and most enjoyable Young Adult reads of 2015. This is just a small snapshot of books, as it's always hard to make a list like this one. However, I'd love to hear what you have enjoyed reading this year, so please get in touch and let me know.... Merry Christmas everybody!
Paul Magrs - Lost on Mars - Published by Firefly Press Ltd (14 May 2015)
Forced to go on the run, she hurtles from one threat to another, revealing a tapestry of terror woven into the very fabric of her life. Her only chance rests with her fellow travellers, who are not at all what they appear to be…
Leif has one ambition: to become the best fighter in the notorious Arena 13. Here, punters place wagers on which fighter will draw first blood. And in grudge matches, they bet on which fighter will die.
But the country is terrorized by the creature Hob, an evil being who delights in torturing its people, displaying his devasting power by challenging an Arena 13 combatant in a fight to the death whenever he chooses. And this is exactly what Leif wants . . . For he knows Hob's crimes well. and at the heart of his ambition burns the desire for vengeance. Leif is going to take on the monster who destroyed his family. Even if it kills him.
Tidying up the archive one day, AJ finds an old key, mysteriously labelled with his name and date of birth - and he becomes determined to find the door that fits the key. And so begins an amazing journey to a very real and tangible past - 1830, to be precise - where the streets of modern Clerkenwell are replaced with cobbles and carts, and the law can be twisted to suit a villain's means. Although life in 1830 is cheap, AJ and his friends quickly find that their own lives have much more value. They've gone from sad youth statistics to young men with purpose - and at the heart of everything lies a crime that only they can solve. But with enemies all around, can they unravel the mysteries of the past, before it unravels them?
Soon Owen realises that the dummy, Mr Sparks, can really talk – and he’s looking for a newer, younger puppetmaster. But Mr Sparks has a dark past . . .
Chris Wooding - Velocity - Published by Scholastic Press (2 July 2015)
Cassica and Shiara have grown up in an outback settlement far from anywhere. Life's hard where they live, but these two girls have a dream. They want to take on the Widowmaker: an off-road rally through some of the most dangerous places on Earth. It's their ticket to fame and fortune. But it just might be the death of them...