5 2021 YA Fantasy Books I’m Excited For!

Okay, so this post could easily be like a million books long, because let’s face it – the sheer number of fantasy books coming out this year is staggering.

And they all sound amazing.

I know I’ve done some “Most Anticipated” lists and all of these books are on them, but you know what, I’m going to hype them some more. Because why not? I’m excited for them and I want to continuously scream about them.

Also, the wait for these books are too long and I’m going stir crazy waiting for them, and doing these kinds of posts is kind of like a balm to my soul.

A temporary pain relief.

But…then the dire need is back, and I’m left dying inside waiting, but it’s fine.

I’m fine.

I’ll just pray to the book gods for advanced copies, or for the calendar to magically speed up for a moment so I can read it right now. Whichever is more plausible really.

These are all books I’m 100% dying to read.

The Crown of Gilded Bones – do I really need to explain this one? And actually, I’m currently reading this. I don’t think it has sunk in yet that I’m part of JLA’s reviewer team – it’s still surreal that I get to read this early.

Fire Jade Gold – omfg the need I have for this book. Every. Single. Time. It pops up on my timeline, I freak tf out. I mean, “What if Katara were the Dark Avatar and Zuko was hunting her down”. How can you not want to read it, when it’s marketed like that!

Untethered – I really need NetGalley to approve me for this, because the wait has been killing me. Shielded was a surprise favorite from last year and I need to know what happens next.

Darling – Need I say more than Peter Pan Retelling. Be still my heart.

Defy the Night – I mean, we all know how much I love Brigid’s books. So, I think this is self-explanatory, but with the Cursebreaker’s series having come to a close and in desperate need of more of her characters, the way for this new book is awful. I just want it now.

Title: The Crown of Gilded Bones (Blood and Ash #3)

Author: Jennifer L Armentrout

Pub. Date: April 20, 2021

Pages: 625

Pub: Blue Box Press

Genre: NA Fantasy Romance


She’s been the victim and the survivor…
Poppy never dreamed she would find the love she’s found with Prince Casteel. She wants to revel in her happiness but first they must free his brother and find hers. It’s a dangerous mission and one with far-reaching consequences neither dreamed of. Because Poppy is the Chosen, the Blessed. The true ruler of Atlantia. She carries the blood of the King of Gods within her. By right the crown and the kingdom are hers.

The enemy and the warrior…

Poppy has only ever wanted to control her own life, not the lives of others, but now she must choose to either forsake her birthright or seize the gilded crown and become the Queen of Flesh and Fire. But as the kingdoms’ dark sins and blood-drenched secrets finally unravel, a long-forgotten power rises to pose a genuine threat. And they will stop at nothing to ensure that the crown never sits upon Poppy’s head.

A lover and heartmate…
But the greatest threat to them and to Atlantia is what awaits in the far west, where the Queen of Blood and Ash has her own plans, ones she has waited hundreds of years to carry out. Poppy and Casteel must consider the impossible—travel to the Lands of the Gods and wake the King himself. And as shocking secrets and the harshest betrayals come to light, and enemies emerge to threaten everything Poppy and Casteel have fought for, they will discover just how far they are willing to go for their people—and each other.

And now she will become Queen…

Title: Jade Fire Gold

Author: June C.L. Tan

Pub. Date: October 12, 2021

Pages: 464

Pub: HarperTeen

Genre: YA LGBT Fantasy


Girls of Paper and Fire meets The Tiger at Midnight in June CL Tan’s stunning debut, inspired by Chinese mythology, with rich magic and an epic slow-burn romance.

In an empire on the brink of war . . .
Ahn is no one, with no past and no family.
Altan is a lost heir, his future stolen away as a child.

When they meet, Altan sees in Ahn a path to reclaiming the throne. Ahn sees a way to finally unlock her past and understand her arcane magical abilities.
But they may have to pay a far deadlier price than either could have imagined.

Ferocious action, shadowy intrigue, and a captivating romance collide in June CL Tan’s debut, a stunning homage to the Xianxia novel with a tender, beating heart, perfect for fans of The Bone Witch and We Hunt the Flame. 

Title: Untethered (Shielded #2)

Author: KayLynn Flanders

Pub. Date: July 20, 2021

Pages: 432

Pub: Delacorte Press

Genre: YA Fantasy


For fans of Sorcery of Thorns and Furyborn comes the thrilling sequel to Shielded about a world in a deadly magical war and the newly crowned king and feisty princess who must defeat the deadliest of foes before there’s nothing left to save.

Although King Atháren’s sister, Jennesara, saved Hálendi from the Gray Mage, the reprieve came at a steep price–the life of their father. Now Ren rules over a divided kingdom, with some who want him dead, and a Medallion that warns of worse trouble brewing in the south.

As second born, Princess Chiara is the perfect Turian royal–perfectly invisible. She longs to help restore peace on the Plateau, but with no magic and no fighting skills, she doesn’t stand a chance against a mage. So when a member of the Turian royal family goes missing and Chiara finds a clue about the rumored resting place of the mages’ long-lost artifacts, she decides it’s time to be seen.

As Ren’s and Chiara’s paths cross, they find the depth of the mages’ hold on the Plateau is more powerful than anyone suspected, and that they must learn to trust themselves, and each other, before the mages retrieve their artifacts and become too powerful to ever defeat. 

Title: Darling

Author: K. Ancrum

Pub. Date: June 22, 2021

Pages: 288

Pub: Imprint

Genre: YA LGBT Fantasy Retelling


A teen girl finds herself lost on a dangerous adventure in this YA thriller by the acclaimed author of The Wicker King and The Weight of the Stars—reimagining Peter Pan for today’s world.

On Wendy Darling’s first night in Chicago, a boy called Peter appears at her window. He’s dizzying, captivating, beautiful—so she agrees to join him for a night on the town.

Wendy thinks they’re heading to a party, but instead they’re soon running in the city’s underground. She makes friends—a punk girl named Tinkerbelle and the lost boys Peter watches over. And she makes enemies—the terrifying Detective Hook, and maybe Peter himself, as his sinister secrets start coming to light. Can Wendy find the courage to survive this night—and make sure everyone else does, too?

Acclaimed author K. Ancrum has re-envisioned Peter Pan with a central twist that will send all your previous memories of J. M. Barrie’s classic permanently off to Neverland.

Title: Defy the Night (Defy the Night #1)

Author: Brigid Kemmerer

Pub. Date: September 14, 2021

Pages: 496

Pub: Bloomsbury YA

Genre: YA Fantasy


From New York Times bestselling author Brigid Kemmerer comes a blockbuster fantasy series about a kingdom divided by corruption, the prince desperately holding it together, and the girl who will risk everything to bring it crashing down.

The kingdom of Kandala is on the brink of disaster. Rifts between sectors have only worsened since a sickness began ravaging the land, and within the Royal Palace, the king holds a tenuous peace with a ruthless hand.
King Harristan was thrust into power after his parents’ shocking assassination, leaving the younger Prince Corrick to take on the brutal role of the King’s Justice. The brothers have learned to react mercilessly to any sign of rebellion–it’s the only way to maintain order when the sickness can strike anywhere, and the only known cure, an elixir made from delicate Moonflower petals, is severely limited.
Out in the Wilds, apothecary apprentice Tessa Cade is tired of seeing her neighbors die, their suffering ignored by the unyielding royals. Every night, she and her best friend Wes risk their lives to steal Moonflower petals and distribute the elixir to those who need it most–but it’s still not enough.
As rumors spread that the cure no longer works and sparks of rebellion begin to flare, a particularly cruel act from the King’s Justice makes Tessa desperate enough to try the impossible: sneaking into the palace. But what she finds upon her arrival makes her wonder if it’s even possible to fix Kandala without destroying it first.

Set in a richly imaginative world with striking similarities to our own, Brigid Kemmerer’s captivating new series is about those with power and those without . . . and what happens when someone is brave enough to imagine a new future.

And for a bonus book – because why the hell not!

Give me a book inspired by Greek Mythology and I’m going to eat it up – hands down, no questions asked and this one sounds utterly fantastic. I’m practically hardwired to automatically love this. 

Title: Daughter of Sparta (Daughter of Sparta #1)

Author: Claire M. Andrews

Pub. Date: June 8, 2021

Pages: 400

Pub: Jimmy Patterson Books

Genre: YA Historical Fantasy Retelling


Sparta forged her into a deadly weapon. Now the Gods need her to save the world!

Seventeen-year-old Daphne has spent her entire life honing her body and mind into that of a warrior, hoping to be accepted by the unyielding people of ancient Sparta. But an unexpected encounter with the goddess Artemis—who holds Daphne’s brother’s fate in her hands—upends the life she’s worked so hard to build. Nine mysterious items have been stolen from Mount Olympus and if Daphne cannot find them, the gods’ waning powers will fade away, the mortal world will descend into chaos, and her brother’s life will be forfeit.

Guided by Artemis’s twin-the handsome and entirely-too-self-assured god Apollo-Daphne’s journey will take her from the labyrinth of the Minotaur to the riddle-spinning Sphinx of Thebes, team her up with mythological legends such as Theseus and Hippolyta of the Amazons, and pit her against the gods themselves.

A reinterpretation of the classic Greek myth of Daphne and Apollo, Daughter of Sparta by debut author Claire Andrews turns the traditionally male-dominated mythology we know into a heart-pounding and empowering female-led adventure.

9 thoughts on “5 2021 YA Fantasy Books I’m Excited For!

  1. I’m especially intrigued by “Darling” – hmm! And also the bonus book selection. They all seem very interesting though. Have you read the “Court of Thorns and Roses” collection by the way? Rumor has it that there will be a series coming out about it!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I hope you check both books out!
      and yep! Big fan, love the series. I’m curious to see how the show is going to pan out. I’m a little nervous, but unless it’s absolutely terrible, I’ll probably end up loving it lol 🙈

      Liked by 1 person

      1. right? I honestly can’t think of any known celeb – tho Tom Hiddleston could probs pull off the personality, but visually he doesn’t cut it (no matter how much i love him lol).

        Liked by 1 person

      2. For sure! Honestly, I lowkey wish it were an animated series over live action, because then the characters could look exactly how they’re meant to. But whatever, I’m going to watch it and love it regardless. It could be downright terrible, and I will still binge it LOL

        Liked by 1 person

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