Here are the diverse YA & MG books being published in April. (Here are the releases for past months.)
Kid Got Shot by Simon Mason - UKYA
Published 6th April 2017 from David Fickling Books.
POC: Biracial; half-Barbadian, half-white-Scottish.
Meet Garvie Smith. Reprobate, genius, waster, and sometime detective. Right in the middle of revision hell - until now. A boy from Marsh Academy has been shot, with no clear motive and no clues. Disgraced DI Singh is on the case, and he's determined to keep Garvie away. But Garvie knows he's the only one who has any idea where to look for the answers. Starting with his best friend's girlfriend. And it's going to take more than pointless revision or flunking his exams to stop him getting involved. Exams. What exams? From Goodreads.
Goodbye Days by Jeff Zentner
Published 6th April from Anderson Press.
LGBTQ*: Gay secondary character.
POC: African-American secondary character.
Can a text message destroy your life?
Carver Briggs never thought a simple text would cause a fatal crash, killing his three best friends, Mars, Eli, and Blake. Now Carver can’t stop blaming himself for the accident and even worse, there could be a criminal investigation into the deaths.
Then Blake’s grandmother asks Carver to remember her grandson with a ‘goodbye day’ together. Carver has his misgivings, but he starts to help the families of his lost friends grieve with their own memorial days, along with Eli’s bereaved girlfriend Jesmyn. But not everyone is willing to forgive. Carver’s own despair and guilt threatens to pull him under into panic and anxiety as he faces punishment for his terrible mistake. Can the goodbye days really help? From Goodreads.
Naondel by Maria Turtschaninoff
Published 6th April 2017 from Pushkin Press.
Intersex secondary chatacter.
POC: Made up races for high fantasy; Garai has red-brown skin and white hair, Orseola has dark skin.
In the opulent palace of Ohaddin, women have one purpose - to obey. Some were brought here as girls, captured and enslaved; some as servants; some as wives. All of them must do what the Master tells them, for he wields a deadly and secret power. But the women have powers too. One is a healer. One can control dreams. One is a warrior. One can see everything that is coming. In their golden prison, the women wait. They plan. They write down their stories. They dream of a refuge, a safe place where girls can be free. And, finally, when the moon glows red, they will have their revenge. From Goodreads.
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas 2017 YA Debut
Published 6th April from Walker Books.
POC: Black - #OwnVoices.
Sixteen-year-old Starr lives in two worlds: the poor neighbourhood where she was born and raised and her posh high school in the suburbs. The uneasy balance between them is shattered when Starr is the only witness to the fatal shooting of her unarmed best friend, Khalil, by a police officer. Now what Starr says could destroy her community. It could also get her killed.
Inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement, this is a powerful and gripping YA novel about one girl's struggle for justice. From Goodreads.
Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han
Published 6th April 2017 from Scholastic.
POC: Biracial; half-Korean, half-American
Lara Jean’s letter-writing days aren’t over in this surprise follow-up to the New York Times bestselling To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before and P.S. I Still Love You.
Lara Jean is having the best senior year a girl could ever hope for. She is head over heels in love with her boyfriend, Peter; her dad’s finally getting remarried to their next door neighbor, Ms. Rothschild; and Margot’s coming home for the summer just in time for the wedding.
But change is looming on the horizon. And while Lara Jean is having fun and keeping busy helping plan her father’s wedding, she can’t ignore the big life decisions she has to make. Most pressingly, where she wants to go to college and what that means for her relationship with Peter. She watched her sister Margot go through these growing pains. Now Lara Jean’s the one who’ll be graduating high school and leaving for college and leaving her family—and possibly the boy she loves—behind.
When your heart and your head are saying two different things, which one should you listen to? From Goodreads.
Straight Outta Crongton by Alex Wheatle - UKYA
Published 6th April 2017 from Atom.
POC Black - #OwnVoices.
Round these ends, it's hard to hold on to your dreams
Life's a constant hustle for Mo. Her mum's boyfriend Lloyd is just another man who likes to beat down women; the South Crong streets are fraught with hazards and nasty G's; and when it comes to matters of the heart . . . she's still hung up on Sam.
No wonder she's vexed so much of the time.
Thank god her sisters, Elaine and Naomi, are on her side: if one of them falls then they all fall.
But when badness goes down and a life is left hanging in the balance, Mo has to face her hot urge for revenge... and she might end up losing more than she wins. From Goodreads.
The State of Grace by Rachael Lucas - 2017 UKYA Debut
Published 6th April 2017 from Macmillan Children's Books.
Neurodiversity: Asperger's Syndrome - #OwnVoices.
Neurodiversity: Asperger's Syndrome.
Sometimes I feel like everyone else was handed a copy of the rules for life and mine got lost.
Grace has Asperger's and her own way of looking at the world. She's got a horse and a best friend who understand her, and that's pretty much all she needs. But when Grace kisses Gabe and things start to change at home, the world doesn't make much sense to her any more.
Suddenly everything threatens to fall apart, and it's up to Grace to fix it on her own.
Whip-smart, hilarious and unapologetically honest, The State of Grace by Rachael Lucas is a heart-warming story of one girl trying to work out where she fits in, and whether she even wants to. From Goodreads.
The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli
Published 11th April 2017 from Penguin.
LGBTQ: Gay secondary character.
Seventeen-year-old Molly Peskin-Suso knows all about unrequited love-she's lived through it twenty-six times. She crushes hard and crushes often, but always in secret. Because no matter how many times her twin sister, Cassie, tells her to woman up, Molly can't stomach the idea of rejection. So she's careful. Fat girls always have to be careful.
Then a cute new girl enters Cassie's orbit, and for the first time ever, Molly's cynical twin is a lovesick mess. Meanwhile, Molly's totally not dying of loneliness-except for the part where she is.
Luckily, Cassie's new girlfriend comes with a cute hipster-boy sidekick. Will is funny, flirtatious, and just might be perfect crush material. Maybe more than crush material. And if Molly can win him over, she'll get her first kiss and she'll get her twin back.
There's only one problem: Molly's coworker, Reid. He's an awkward Tolkien superfan, and there's absolutely no way Molly could fall for him. Right? From Goodreads.
Out of Heart by Irfan Master - UKYA
Published 20th April 2017 from Hot Key Books.
POC: British Indian.
Donating your heart is the most precious gift of all.
Adam is a teenage boy who lives with his mum and younger sister. His dad has left them although lives close by. His sister no longer speaks. His mum works two jobs. Adam feels the weight of the world upon his shoulders.
Then his grandfather dies and in doing so he donates a very precious gift - his heart.
William is the recipient of Adam's grandfather's heart. He has no family and feels rootless and alone. In fact, he feels no particular reason to live. And then he meets Adam's family.
William has received much, but it appears that he has much to offer Adam and his family too.
A powerful tale of love and strength in adversity. From Goodreads.
So these are the diverse YA & MG books coming out in the UK this month! If I've missed any, do let me know, and I'll add them.
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