It’s no secret that Aussie and Kiwi YA authors are absolutely amazing. They are the pioneers of Young Adult Fiction in Australia, New Zealand and the world beyond. They’ve paved the way for the new generation of AUNZYA authors, as every bit relevant in today’s society as they were twenty years ago, when they were changing the face of literature. Which is why I decided to be part of the Aussie YA Blog Hop, hosted by the girls from Happy Indulgence Books, Joy from Thoughts by J, Emily from Loony Literate, Genie from Genie in an Book and Aimee from My Life in Books, to tell you why I love Aussie YA Lit and to hopefully give you some new books to read! Because let’s face it, we all love new books and high TBRs.
There’s a rawness about Aussie YA that you don’t find in other young adult. Maybe it’s because the contemporaries speak straight to our hearts, or that the language our fantasy writers resonates so much with our own, there’s something inexplicably wonderful about opening a book that’s written by someone who knows you, who identifies with your cultural values and morals and even pushes you to test your own boundaries – all of which Aussie YA does. Being able to relate to a text is the most wonderful feeling a reader can have – and that’s what makes Aussie YA so iconic.
Yes, I am sitting next to the amazing John Marsden! Excuse me while I freak out (and pardon the squinty eyes from the cold morning sun, Straya, right?)
Other great authors I love include Melina Marchetta, Jaclyn Moriarty and Paula Weston amongst others.
Tomorrow, When The War Began by John Marsden. The whole series (minus the Ellie Chronicles, because that’s the shadowy land we don’t talk about) defined my teenage years. They were the books I turned to in high school when I needed some quiet time, when I needed to feel like I had a place to belong. I learnt so many life lessons from the Tomorrow series. And what’s great about it is that it’s inter-generational, and I can’t wait for others to explore it as well.
The Special Ones by Em Bailey
I feel in love with Em Bailey’s new book, The Special Ones, about a girl who lives with three others in a farmhouse controlled by an outsider. It’s a cultish and spine tingling look about the depths of social media and the dangers lurking behind the growth of technology. Em captivated me with her debut, Shift, so it’s not surprise I loved this one just as much.
The Road to Winter by Mark Smith
The Road to Winter by Mark Smith. I first heard about this title from Text Publishing at the TeenCon event in Sydney earlier on in the year. Shades of Tomorrow, When The War Began was how it was pitched and I was sold just from that alone!
The Rephaim Series by Paula Weston
Paula Weston’s Rephaim series is one of my all-time favourites. I devoured the first two books and then had to survive the long, arduous wait for books three and four, but I loved the way Paula mixed mythology with realism, all in a (mostly) Aussie setting. See, Australia has hot angels too!
The Skin of a Monster by Kathryn Barker
I’m not good with books that are heavy with magical realism, but In The Skin of a Monster is one of those books that will, well, leave a mark on you. Dark, compelling and poignant, I challenge anyone to read this novel and not be changed by it.
The Summer Series CJ Duggan
Not strictly YA (more on the matura YA to New Adult end of the scale), I can’t really talk about how much I love Aussie YA and not talk about CJ Duggan, who has introduced me to one of my favourite series of all time. As mentioned, they are a bit more New Adult, but the series has such a rush of 90s Aussie nostalgia that it’s hard not to love these boys – I mean, books!
Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
The Boundless Sublime by Lili Wilkinson
I seriously can’t sit here and just list a few people, because we have so many amazing Aussie Bloggers out there. However, the fabulous Kelly from Diva Booknerd has complied an amazing list on Twitter of Aussie and Kiwi Book Bloggers, and I think you should check out the list because it’s full of sweet Aussie goodness! Go crazy here and say hi to some wonderful people.
And to check out the rest of the blogs on the hop, just click here to discover more awesome #LoveOzYA and fantastic bloggers!