It may have crept up slowwwwly as a trend, but YA anthologies are all the rage the days, giving readers a chance to get glimpses of their favorites’ short fiction skills alongside new-to-them names and to get some glorious and diverse variety within the realms of cool themes and topics that don’t get nearly enough shelf space on a good day. Here are five to pre-order, hitting shelves in 2017.
Because You Love to Hate Me: 13 Tales of Villainy (July 11)
Who’s editing? Singer-songwriter and booktubing superstar Ameriie
Who’s contributing? A killer lineup combining bestselling YA powerhouses—including Susan Dennard (Truthwitch), Renée Ahdieh (Flame in the Mist), Marissa Meyer (Heartless), Adam Silvera (History is All You Left Me), Nicola Yoon (The Sun is Also a Star), Victoria Schwab (This Savage Song), and Cindy Pon (Want)—paired up with a fabulous collection of some of Booktube’s best and brightest.
How excited are we? I MEAN. Between the concept of reimagined fairytales focusing on the villains and the fact that they’ll be done by author team combos of some of YA’s stars and the readers who know them best, how can you not bump this to the top of your to-read list? Plus, for those who follow YA’s best podcasts, it’ll be your first shot at published work by First Draft host Sarah Enni.
Welcome Home (September 5)
Who’s editing? Eric Smith, author of the Inked duology and blogger at this here site
Who’s contributing? One of the most interesting lineups of authors we’ve seen in a long time, in my opinion. While it’s always cool to get more work from bestsellers and omnipresent names, I’m thrilled at how many underrated midlist and/or less-recently published authors are gracing this volume, including Sangu Mandanna (The Lost Girl) and Helene Dunbar (These Gentle Wounds), plus Lauren Gibaldi and Shannon Gibney, whose Autofocus and See No Color, respectively, are key books in the small canon of YAs centered around adoption.
How excited are we? VERY. Adoption is still highly underdone in kidlit, so to have a whole book of stories on different aspects of the subject, from authors with a variety of different relationships to it, promises to add a plethora of much-needed perspectives to the shelf. Plus, it’s a chance to catch a preview of debut author Nic Stone, whose highly anticipated Dear Martin releases a month later.
Behind the Song (September 5)
Who’s editing? K.M. Walton, author of the intense and emotional Cracked, Empty, and recently released Ultimatum
Who’s contributing? An intriguing variety of authors, including New York Times bestseller David Arnold (Kids of Appetite), We Need Diverse Books founder Ellen Oh (Prophecy), lush-prose mistress of international settings Beth Kephart (One Thing Stolen), author-journalist Anthony Breznican (Brutal Youth), and contemp darling Tiffany Schmidt (Send Me a Sign).
How excited are we? Combining YA and music, aka two of everyone’s favorite things? I’d say “off the charts” would be an appropriate pun here. Plus, you can catch Because You Love to Hate Me editor Ameriie in the author lineup.
Feral Youth (September 5)
Who’s editing? Shaun David Hutchinson, who has already earned his antho-editorial cred with Violent Ends, alongside his own impressive catalog
Who’s contributing? Some of YA’s most interesting, creative, torturous mindscrewers, including psych thriller queen and Morris Award winner Stephanie Kuehn (Charm & Strange, When I Am Through With You), New York Times bestselling author of This is Where it Ends Marieke Nijkamp, genre-jumpers extraordinaire Suzanne Young (The Program, All in Pieces) and Robin Talley (As I Descended, Our Own Private Universe), and SFF-adventure Guys to Know E.C. Myers (The Silence of Six) and Tim Floreen (Tattoo Atlas).
How excited are we? Next level. I’m not sure I’ve ever heard of an idea quite as innovative as a multi-genre Canterbury Tales-inspired YA anthology, and I am dying to see what comes out of it. Plus, whether you’ve been waiting impatiently for more Alaya Dawn Johnson since Love is the Drug or just came off the high of getting a new Brandy Colbert novel (Little & Lion) the month before, there’s almost definitely a fave in here for you.
Three Sides of a Heart: Stories About Love Triangles (December 19)
Who’s editing? Natalie C. Parker, author of criminally underread Southern Gothics Beware the Wild and Behold the Bones
Who’s contributing? A seriously fun cast that combines New York Times-bestselling contemporary romance staples like Katie Cotugno (How to Love, Fireworks) and Julie Murphy (Dumplin’, Ramona Blue) with authors we’re far more used to seeing tackle thrillers (Lamar Giles, Overturned), dystopian blockbusters (Veronica Roth, Divergent), and Norse mythology (Tessa Gratton, The Lost Sun).
How excited are we? You know those readers who absolutely hate love triangles and want nothing to do with them? We are not those readers; bring on the romance, and bring on the complications!