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5 of the best YA fantasy books of 2019 so far

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It's hard to believe, but 2019 is more than halfway through now. In the last seven months there have been some incredible new Young Adult fantasy releases, from both debut and established authors.

Narrowing down my choices to the best of the best has been no easy task, but the books below are my favourites so far from 2019.

1. King of Fools - Amanda Foody

King of Fools // Inkyard Press

King of Fools is the sequel to Amanda Foody's 2018 book Ace of Shades, which followed Enne Salta and Levi Glaisyer as they searched for Enne's missing mother. King of Fools throws the two into the twisted political world of New Reynes as Enne finds her feet as a gang leader and Levi enters a dangerous partnership with the son of mafia Donna Vianca Augustine in order to break his deadly oath to her. King of Fools takes everything I loved about the first book and ups the ante by 11, and I am so excited to see where the third and final book in the trilogy takes these characters.

2. Enchantee - Gita Trelease

Enchantee // Flatiron / Macmillan 

Trelease's debut novel is a magical whirlwind journey through a Paris on the brink of the French Revolution. The main character, Camille, is struggling to provide for her sister after a smallpox outbreak has left them orphaned and, in order to make money, she infiltrates the court of Versailles and uses her skill for magic to win big through gambling. Trelease perfectly captures the beauty and the danger of Versailles, and the combination of magic and the historical setting fits beautifully.

3. Bedlam - Derek Landy

Bedlam // HarperCollins Children's Books

I had been unsure of the latest run of Skulduggery Pleasant books; the first two didn't reach anywhere near the height of the original series, but luckily Landy seems to be back on track with this latest release. Bedlam captures the spirit of the original series so much better than the first two books of this new run did, and there are so many brilliant plot developments that could be potentially exciting for the rest of the series, so I'm really looking forward to seeing what happens next.

4. Romanov - Nadine Brandes

Romanov // Thomas Nelson

Nadine Brandes' 2018 novel Fawkes was a brilliant retelling of the Gunpowder Plot, with an added magical twist, and her follow up, Romanov, takes on the story of Anastasia Romanov. Romanov follows the exiled Russian royal family in the days leading up to their execution, with the first half being an account of their time in exile, and the second half being a more magical "what if". What if Anastasia survived the shooting? Brandes certainly has a strong talent for historical fantasy retellings. 

5. Finale - Stephanie Garber

Finale // Flatiron Books

Finale is, fittingly, the final book in Stephanie Garber's Caraval trilogy. It follows sisters Scarlett and Tella as they attempt to take down the Fates, immortal beings who escaped from an enchanted deck of cards at the end of the last book. Finale is a fitting end to the dazzling fantasy story that Garber created with Caraval and Legendary. It's a wonderful escapist fantasy filled with magicians, magic dresses, evil villains and sisterly love. 

Lead image: King of Fools // Inkyard Press




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