#QuietYA: Eleven underrated October books to read

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I get asked often what, exactly, #quietYA is. The traditional definition is about books that aren’t very action packed and slower paced, but I use it to talk about books that are not bestsellers, not award winners, and that don’t have any kind of book or TV deal. So often, the same books are discussed over and over again and unfortunately, books fall through the cracks. But I believe that every book published is needed by someone and I want to create the best possible chance to get those books in hands.

#quietYA is my attempt to make that happen.

Here are eleven #quietYA books that released this month that you might have missed.

wrecked-maria-padianWrecked by Maria Padian
Publisher: Algonquin Young Readers
Release date: October 4
Everyone on campus has a different version of what happened that night. Haley saw Jenny return from the
party, shell-shocked. Richard heard Jordan brag about the cute freshman he hooked up with. When Jenny accuses Jordan of rape, Haley and Richard are pushed to opposite sides of the school’s investigation. Now conflicting versions of the story may make bringing the truth to light nearly impossible—especially when reputations, relationships, and whole futures are riding on the verdict.

fear-the-drowning-deep-sarah-glenn-marshFear the Drowning Deep by Sarah Glenn Marsh
Publisher: Sky Pony Press
Release date: October 4
Witch’s apprentice Bridey Corkill has hated the ocean ever since she watched her granddad dive in and drown with a smile on his face. So when a dead girl rolls in with the tide in the summer of 1913, Bridey suspects that whatever compelled her granddad to leap into the sea has made its return to the Isle of Man. Soon, villagers are vanishing in the night, but no one shares Bridey’s suspicions about the sea. No one but the island’s witch, who isn’t as frightening as she first appears, and the handsome dark-haired lad Bridey rescues from a grim and watery fate. The cause of the deep gashes in Fynn’s stomach and his lost memories are, like the recent disappearances, a mystery well-guarded by the sea. In exchange for saving his life, Fynn teaches Bridey to master her fear of the water. Now, Bridey must work with the Isle’s eccentric witch and the boy she isn’t sure she can trust — because if she can’t uncover the truth about the ancient evil in the water, everyone she loves will walk into the sea, never to return.

beast brie spanglerBeast by Brie Spangler
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Release date: October 11
Tall, meaty, muscle-bound, and hairier than most throw rugs, Dylan doesn’t look like your average fifteen-year-old, so, high school has not been kind to him. To make matters worse, on the day his school bans hats (his preferred camouflage), Dylan goes up on his roof only to fall and wake up in the hospital with a broken leg—and a mandate to attend group therapy for self-harmers. Dylan vows to say nothing and zones out at therapy—until he meets Jamie. She’s funny, smart, and so stunning, even his womanizing best friend, JP, would be jealous. She’s also the first person to ever call Dylan out on his self-pitying and superficiality. As Jamie’s humanity and wisdom begin to rub off on Dylan, they become more than just friends. But there is something Dylan doesn’t know about Jamie, something she shared with the group the day he wasn’t listening. Something that shouldn’t change a thing. She is who she’s always been—an amazing photographer and devoted friend, who also happens to be transgender. But will Dylan see it that way?

iron cast destiny soriaIron Cast by Destiny Soria
Publisher: Amulet Books
Release date: October 11
It’s Boston, 1919, and the Cast Iron club is packed. On stage, hemopaths—whose “afflicted” blood gives them the ability to create illusions through art—captivate their audience. Corinne and Ada have been best friends ever since infamous gangster Johnny Dervish recruited them into his circle. By night they perform for Johnny’s crowds, and by day they con Boston’s elite. When a job goes wrong and Ada is imprisoned, they realize how precarious their position is. After she escapes, two of the Cast Iron’s hires are shot, and Johnny disappears. With the law closing in, Corinne and Ada are forced to hunt for answers, even as betrayal faces them at every turn.

rani-patel-in-full-effect-sonia-patelRani Patel in Full Effect by Sonia Patel
Publisher: Cinco Puntos Press
Release date: October 11
Almost seventeen, Rani Patel appears to be a kick-ass Indian girl breaking cultural norms as a hip-hop performer in full effect. But in truth, she’s a nerdy  nobody who lives with her Gujarati immigrant parents on the remote Hawaiian island of Moloka’i, isolated from her high school peers by the unsettling norms of Indian culture where “husband is God.” Her parents’ traditionally arranged marriage is a sham. Her dad turns to her for all his needs—even the intimate ones. When Rani catches him two-timing with a woman barely older than herself, she feels like a widow and, like widows in India are often made to do, she shaves off her hair. Her sexy bald head and hard-driving rhyming skills attract the attention of Mark, the hot older customer who frequents her parents’ store and is closer in age to her dad than to her. Mark makes the moves on her and Rani goes with it. He leads Rani into 4eva Flowin’, an underground hip hop crew—and into other things she’s never done. Rani ignores the red flags. Her naive choices look like they will undo her but ultimately give her the chance to discover her strengths and restore the things she thought she’d lost, including her mother.

amy-chelsea-stacie-dee-mary-g-thompsonAmy Chelsea Stacie Dee by Mary G. Thompson
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Release date: October 11
When Amy returns home, she can’t tell her family what’s happened to her. She can’t tell them where she’s been since she and her best friend, her cousin Dee, were kidnapped six years ago—who stole them from their families or what’s become of Dee. She has to stay silent because she’s afraid of what might happen next, and she’s desperate to protect her secrets at any cost. Amy tries to readjust to life at “home,” but nothing she does feels right. She’s a stranger in her own family, and the guilt that she’s the one who returned is insurmountable. Amy soon realizes that keeping secrets won’t change what’s happened, and they may end up hurting those she loves the most. She has to go back in order to move forward, risking everything along the way.

the-catalyst-helena-cogganThe Catalyst by Helena Coggan
Publisher: Candlewick Books
Release date: October 11
Eighteen years ago, a dimensional break ripped open the sky, drawing humans into an ancient conflict. Otherworldly souls rained down and fused with those of people, dividing the population into the green-eyed, magical Gifted and the dark-eyed, nonmagical Ashkind. A devastating war followed, and the Gifted have managed a fragile peace ever since, largely through a brutal law enforcement organization known as the Department. Fifteen-year-old Rose’s father, David, has a leading role in the Department. Rose and David are Gifted, but they are also something else — something terrible. Their lives depend on keeping it secret. But when a mysterious murder threatens to tear Rose’s world apart, forcing long-buried secrets into the open, her loyalties are put to the test. How much does Rose really know about her father’s past? How far is the Department willing to go to maintain order? And, when the time comes, who will Rose choose to protect?

my-unscripted-life-lauren-morrillMy Unscripted Life by Lauren Morrill
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Release date: October 11
Dee Wilkie is still licking her wounds after getting rejected by the precollege fine arts program of her dreams. But if she’d gone away, she wouldn’t have been around to say yes to an unbelievable opportunity: working on the set of a movie filming in her small Southern town that just happens to be starring Milo Ritter, the famous pop star Dee (along with the rest of the world) has had a crush since eighth grade. It’s not like Dee will be sharing any screen time with Milo—she’s just a lowly PA. And Milo is so disappointingly rude that Dee is eager to stay far away from him. Except after a few chance meetings, she begins to wonder if just maybe there’s a reason for his offensive attitude, and if there’s more to Milo than his good looks and above-it-all Hollywood pedigree. Can a relationship with a guy like Milo ever work out for a girl like Dee?

snow-summer-kit-peelSnow Summer by Kit Peel
Publisher: Groundwood Books
Release date: October 11
Massive climate change has caused a winter that will not thaw, and it seems that the forces of nature have turned on humanity itself. But in the sleepy British village of Pateley, one special girl may hold the key to the earth’s survival. Wyn, an orphan, has always known that she is different. Unable to feel the biting cold of wind and snow of Pateley’s endless winter, she does what she can to blend in. But when mysterious figures start to appear in the village, insisting that she may have the power to restore order to the natural world, Wyn must look deep inside herself to face the secrets of her past that she has kept hidden even from herself.

no-holding-back-kate-evangelistaNo Holding Back by Kate Evangelista
Publisher: Swoon Reads
Release date: October 18
Everyone knows that Nathan is in love with his best friend, Preston…Everyone except Preston. Nathan has always accepted that Preston was too focused on his swim training to worry about love. But Preston is heading off to train for the Olympics soon, so if Nathan wants his chance at love, he has to speak up now. But saying “I love you” is surprisingly difficult, even for someone as confident as Nathan. Maybe a whirlwind vacation in Europe could help? But… what if it doesn’t work out and he loses the best friend he’s ever had?

it's not me it's you stephanie kate strohmIt’s Not Me, It’s You by Stephanie Kate Strohm
Publisher: Point
Release date: October 25
Avery Dennis is a high school senior and one of the most popular girls in her class. But a majorly public breakup with the guy she’s been dating causes some disastrous waves. It is right before prom and Avery no longer has the perfect date. She runs the prom committee, how could she not show up with somebody? Post-breakup, Avery gets to thinking about all of the guys that she has ever dated. How come none of those relationships ever worked out? Could it be her fault? In history class she’s learning about this method of record-keeping called “oral history” and she has a report due. So Avery decides to go directly to the source. Avery tracks down all of the guys she’s ever dated, and uses that information, along with thoughts from her friends, family, and teachers, to compile a total account of her dating history. Avery discovers some surprises about herself and the guys she’s spent time with — just in time for prom night!

One thing I’ve learned over the years is that there are always new YA readers who missed out on learning about the new titles, so older titles need love too! This month’s throwback pick is Between the Sea and Sky by Jaclyn Dolamore.

between-the-sea-and-sky-jaclyn-dolamoreBetween the Sea and Sky by Jaclyn Dolamore
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children’s Books
Release date: October 25 2011
For as long as Esmerine can remember, she has longed to join her older sister, Dosinia, as a siren–the highest calling a mermaid can have. When Dosinia runs away to the mainland, Esmerine is sent to retrieve her. Using magic to transform her tail into legs, she makes her way unsteadily to the capital city. There she comes upon a friend she hasn’t seen since childhood–a dashing young man named Alander, who belongs to a winged race of people. As Esmerine and Alander band together to search for Dosinia, they rekindle a friendship . . . and ignite the emotions for a love so great, it cannot be bound by sea, land, or air.

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About Author

Julie Daly

Julie Daly is sometimes known as Julianne. A recent college grad, when not job hunting, Julie is watching Netflix, talking about YA on twitter, or trying to make her cats play. In 2009, Julie joined a group blog called Bloggers[Heart]Books and her obsession with all things YA has grown exponentially. Though she no longer blogs, she did create #quietYA and is a cofounder of Blogbound Con. Julie has also interned at several publishers and sometimes plays bookseller. Follow her on Twitter at @DailyJulianne.

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