The 2020 *Book Shimmy* Awards are coming! Epic Reads’ annual celebration to honor the best Young Adult books of the year is always a good time, and that’s because all the winners are voted for by the readers. The semifinals have just been launched today and B&N is once again sponsoring the Group Chat Award — the award that goes to the book you could not stop texting your group chat about. This year gave us a wealth of exceptional stories in YA. And whether you discovered a new series or got pulled into an old favorite, there was no shortage of adventures to pick from and obsess over this year. Check out the amazing 2020 finalists for the Group Chat Awards here and head over to the Epic Reads site to cast your vote today!
The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes
It’s been ten years since readers first tore through the final installment of the Hunger Games trilogy so to say that fans were excited to return to Panem may be a bit of an understatement. The Hunger Games series ushered in a new era of dystopian fiction, one that’s character motivated in an extraordinary world filled with action, suspense, romance and social commentary — it’s basically got it all, and nothing is off-limits. The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes is the shocking — and thrilling — prequel centered on President Snow, and one book we still can’t stop buzzing about.
Whether you call it a guilty pleasure (or not), the Twilight series is seriously addictive, and it’s clear that its legions of fans were so ready to return to the enchanting and sparkly world of Edward and Bella. Readers old and new rushed to devour this highly anticipated companion to Twilight and indulge in the iconic love story once again, now told from Edward’s perspective. Midnight Sun wasn’t just a hot book, it was the major publishing event of the year! “People do not want to just read Meyer’s books; they want to climb inside them and live there.” — Time
Tiffany D. Jackson
Legendary R&B artist makes promises of taking young girls under his wing and boosting their careers, but, in actuality, manipulates them physically and emotionally. Sound familiar? Sexual abuse allegations against R. Kelly have made headlines for years and undoubtedly come to mind when reading Tiffany D. Jackson’s second book. Grown is an all-too-familiar story about the blind eye turned to the wrongdoings of the idols in the Black community and the disregard for the word of Black women. “Groundbreaking, heart-wrenching, and essential reading for all in the #MeToo era.” — Dhonielle Clayton, author of The Belles
Blood & Honey
This hotly anticipated sequel to Serpent & Dove packs in all the magic and heart-stopping action we loved in the first book, and more. Full of witchcraft and forbidden love, the Serpent & Dove series should not be missed. In this second installment, Lou, Reid and their crew are on the run from enemies and in desperate need of protection. Relationships are put to the test as the group travels through dangerous situations to find the strong allies they need that just might force them to turn to a darker side of magic. Mahurin’s epic world-building and well-developed cast of characters make this hands-down one of our favorite new YA fantasy series.
Hardcover $15.99 | $19.99
One of Us Is Next
Karen M. McManus
This addictive whodunit is a perfect ensemble thriller that will keep you guessing until the very end and the highly anticipated sequel to the provocative thrill ride that was, One of Us Is Lying. One of Us Is Next starts a new mystery with a whole new set of rules — this time around, a deadly game of truth or dare. This one delivers all the twists you might expect from Karen M. McManus while racing full speed toward a shocking conclusion you’ll never see coming.
The author of the bestselling The Selection series is back with another heart-stopping historical romance set in a faraway kingdom. When Hollis finally gets the attention of King Jameson, she finally can see her (and her family’s) dreams come true — she will be the future Queen of Coroa. However, when newcomer Silas catches her eye, she begins to question if that is what her heart truly wants. Readers will be begging for the next installment in this fun and fantastical duology.
Southern Black Girl Magic meets Arthurian Legend in this unputdownable contemporary fantasy from newcomer Tracy Deonn. Rife with edge-of-your-seat suspense, lush world-building and intricate plot details, Legendborn also adeptly weaves in an important commentary on the history of racism in the American South and the effects of that trauma and grief today. Simply put: this book is not to be missed.
Hardcover $15.99 | $17.99
The Inheritance Games
Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Avery Grambs is a relative nobody when she learns that an eccentric billionaire she never knew has died and named her the largest beneficiary to his massive estate. The only catch? She must move into his sprawling home with the extended family that he just disinherited, including his four charming, mysterious and good-looking grandsons. Filled with riddles, puzzles and high-stakes twists all leading to a thrilling conclusion, this one will leave you reeling long after you’ve finished.