Most Anticipated Young Adult SFF/H for March & April 2024

Spring is so close, I can almost taste it. The days are getting longer, the weather is warming up, and a new crop of spring releases are arriving. I’ve got for you 20 of my most anticipated young adult science fiction, fantasy, and horror novels for March and April.

Thrills & Chills

Dead Girls Walking by Sami Ellis

Temple Baker’s father is a notorious serial killer. When he claims to have killed her mother, Temple sets out to find her body. She joins a queer horror summer camp as a way to sneak onto her family’s old property and is shocked to find new corpses. Is there a new killer in town or is something else taking out the campers? (Amulet Books; March 26, 2024)

The Black Girl Survives in This One: Horror Stories edited by Desiree S. Evans, Saraciea J. Fennell

Fifteen spine-tingling stories putting a new twist on classic horror tropes. Haunted cornfields? Check. Space terror? Check. Werewolves? Check. Demon deals? Check. Authors: Erin E. Adams, Monica Brashears, Charlotte Nicole Davis, Desiree S. Evans, Saraciea J. Fennell, Zakiya Dalila Harris, Daka Hermon, Justina Ireland, L.L. McKinney, Brittney Morris, Maika and Maritza Moulite, Eden Royce, and Vincent Tirado. (Flatiron Books; April 2, 2024)

The Future Sucks

Fall of the Iron Gods by Olivia Chadha (The Mechanists #2)

In the long-awaited conclusion to The Mechanists duology, we join Ashiva after successfully destroying the black site run by the South Asian Province. But she can’t take her victory lap yet. The Red Hand, the rebels who she helped take down the prison, are declared enemies of the state by the Planetary Alliance Commission. Now Ashiva, Synch, and Taru are tasked with finding the source of a strange beacon and stopping the Planetary Alliance Commission from getting ahold of a new, rare resource. (Erewhon; April 23, 2024)

Magic with a Twist

The Feast Makers by H. A. Clarke (Scapegracers #3)

Sideways Pike just wants to graduate high school already. Before that, however, they have to get through the trial of Madeline Kline. After everything Madeline put Sideways through, they should want her punished, shouldn’t they? And then there are those wretched witchfinders they have to deal with. They can’t pass up the opportunity of a bunch of powerful witches all gathered in one place, but the witches aren’t about to let them get away with murder. (Erewhon Books; March 26, 2024)

The Poisons We Drink by Bethany Baptiste

Venus lives in an alternate, fantasy version of our world, cooking up moonshine love potions. After her mother’s murder, Venus is pressganged into brewing potions that will compel DC politicians into doing things they don’t want to do. Venus wants revenge on her mother’s killer, but getting it might mean unleashing the dark force, the It, that lurks in the shadows of her mind. (Sourcebooks Fire; March 26, 2024)

Call Forth a Fox by Markelle Grabo

In the isolated village of Sugar Maple lives Ro. She loves spending time in the forest and ignores the warnings to stay clear of the western wood. When she saves a fox from being attacked by a bear, she doesn’t expect that bear to turn into a boy who knows nothing except Ro’s name and that he must kill the fox. Ro and her sister Eirwyn must navigate fairy magic, deadly curses, and dangerous deals. A retelling of “Snow White and Red Rose.” (Page Street YA; April 2, 2024)

Blood Justice by Terry J. Benton-Walker (Blood Debts #2)

Clem and Cris fought hard to get their family justice. Now their family is back in power and the Savants are banished from power forever. Valentina will do anything to take back her family’s power and take the crown for herself. Also hunting the Trudeaus are a crooked cop who hates magic and a hungry god tethered to Clem. Cris and Clem’s fight is not yet over. (Tor Teen; April 23, 2024)

Gods & Monsters

Darker by Four by June C. L. Tan (Darker by Four #1)

“A vengeful girl. A hollow boy. A missing god.” Color me intrigued! Combat expert Rui desires nothing but to punish the creature that killed her mother. After a monster attacks Yiran, Rui’s magic is transferred into him, leaving her normal and him with unstable powers. They’re pulled into a larger conspiracy when Nikai, a Reaper, sets out to find the missing Fourth King of Hell. (Harperteen; April 2, 2024)

Merciless Saviors by H. E. Edgmon (The Ouroboros #2)

Betrayed and forced to kill, Gem has a new power and a growing anger. The pantheon is increasingly fractured and unstable. Gem, the Magician, is supposed to keep things balanced, not make things more chaotic. They, Rory, and Enzo will do anything to restore balance to the pantheon, no matter how much blood it takes. (Wednesday Books; April 16, 2024)

Past Is Present

Sheine Lende by Darcie Little Badger (Elatsoe #2)

It’s the 1970s and Shane and her mother use their ability to summon ghosts to track down missing people. When her mother vanishes while tracking two lost siblings, Shane pulls on her friends and family to get her through and help her out. Themes touching on the loss of culture due to colonization and the importance of community run throughout. Shane will attempt something few have done before in order to save her mom, but she won’t do it alone. Although this story is about Elatsoe’s grandmother, you don’t need to have read Elatsoe in order to understand Sheine Lende. (Levine Querido; April 16, 2024)

Saint-Seducing Gold by Brittany N. Williams (Forge & Fracture Saga #2)

Let’s travel back to Shakespearean London with siblings Joan and James Sands, a fight choreographer and actor, respectively, for the King’s Men acting company. They’re also able to channel the powers of the Orisha. The siblings are facing battles on multiple fronts, from the sinister spymaster Robert Cecil to the duplicitous Fae queen Titanea. To rescue their godfather, Joan and James will have to risk it all. (Amulet Books; April 23, 2024)

Court Intrigue

The Encanto’s Daughter by Melissa de la Cruz (The Encanto’s Daughter #1)

King Vivencio Basilio of the Sirena Court is dead, and now it’s Southern California teen MJ’s problem. MJ is half-human and half-encanto, but despite living her life in the human world, she’s now the heir to the throne. She’ll have to win over snobby members of the council, learn the complicated traditions of the court, and stop the same dangerous magic that killed her father from taking her, too. The realm of Biringan is a parallel fairy world near the Philippines, and Filipino mythology permeates this story. (G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers; March 5, 2024)

The Smoke That Thunders by Erhu Kome

The last thing ​​Naborhi wants is her fate. On the cusp of going through the rites of passage that will mark her a woman—and sentence her to a life of childbearing and tending to a man’s house—a new path opens up. Naborhi encounters a magical animal and the son of an Oracle, and they decide to head out on a great adventure to find the mysterious boy she keeps dreaming of. That boy, a missing prince, heralds a war looming on the horizon. (Norton Young Readers; April 9, 2024)

Love Is in the Air

The Last Bloodcarver by Vanessa Le (The Last Bloodcarver Duology #1)

Called a bloodcarver by those who fear and hate her, Nhika can change the human body with her touch. A criminal gang captures her and sells her off to a wealthy family. There, she must heal the dying person who is the only witness to a terrible death. She also meets Kochin, a boy who claims to be a physician’s aide but is something much more. Corruption runs deep in the city of Theumas. (Roaring Brook Press; March 19, 2024)

Otherworldly by F. T. Lukens

Ellery doesn’t believe in magic. Not when the goddess their family prays to has forsaken their crops and left them in a frozen winter the last five years. Knox, an immortal familiar, is delaying returning to the Other World where he’s doomed to have his memories erased…assuming his queen and homeland even still exist. The two teens decide to help each other—Ellery will contract with Knox to keep him in the human world and Knox will help them break the winter curse. (Margaret K. McElderry Books; April 2, 2024)

Set Sail

Dragonfruit by Makiia Lucier

It’s been a while since we’ve been blessed with a Makiia Lucier fantasy romance. Hanalei’s father commits a terrible sin: stealing a seadragon egg intended for a dying princess. While in exile, she spends her time learning everything she can about seadragons. A chance encounter with Samahtitamahenele, the prince and brother of the princess who caused Hanalei’s exile, leads the two teens on a quest to find a new dragonfruit. (Clarion Books; April 9, 2024)

The Final Curse of Ophelia Cray by Christine Calella

Sisters Ophelia and Betsy couldn’t be more different. After their mother, a notorious pirate, is executed, Ophelia runs away from home to join the navy using her sister’s identity. Betsy learns of Ophelia’s scheme and ventures out to save her before she’s found out and given the same fate as their mother. (Page Street YA; April 9, 2024)

Outcasts, Outlaws, & Rebels

King of Dead Things by Nevin Holness

Eli has no memory of his past while Malcolm would love to forget his deadbeat dad. Eli uses his magic to help and heal while Malcolm uses his to raise the dead. In London’s underground magical scene, these two boys go after a magical totem while trying to steer clear of a duppy king and the daughter of Death. (Atheneum Books for Young Readers; April 16, 2024)

Song of the Six Realms by Judy I. Lin

Xue, an apprentice qin player, loses the only family she has left when her poet uncle is killed by bandits. Now an indentured musician, she has no hope of a future, not until she meets Duke Meng. He whisks her away to his grand, distant estate and reveals he’s really the Duke of Dreams of the Celestial Realm. He offers her a deal she can’t refuse: if she helps him root out what is threatening the Six Realms, he’ll free her from her contract. (Feiwel & Friends; April 23, 2024)

To a Darker Shore by Leanne Schwartz

Alesta, a lowly shepherdess in Soladisa, tries to prove her worth to spare her from being sacrificed to the monster Teras, it backfires so spectacularly that her best friend is sentenced in her place. Alesta descends into Hell—in a clever take on Dante’s Inferno—only to discover Kyrian alive and well, if by “well” you mean turned into a monster. The friends realize there is a dark conspiracy surrounding the tithings. (Page Street YA; April 30, 2024)


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