Hey everyone and happy Tuesday! I’m super excited to finally bring you my 2021 winter YA (mostly, though I might sneak a few adult books in there) anticipated releases! I was first thinking about doing a master-post for the entire year, but then thought I’d be missing out on too many releases in order to make it not 234832 pages long. I was also thinking about doing one for each month, but then I just settled on doing it for the winter season! So, with this post, I’ll be covering my most anticipated releases for January, February, and March. I’ll be including a little bit on why I’m so excited for them, along with their release dates for reference! I’ve also liked the corresponding Goodreads pages to all of the titles.
Soooo, let’s get started!
Be Dazzled by Ryan La Sala | Released Jan. 5th
Hey Allison? Why would you pick a book already released for an anticipated releases post? Because this post was supposed to come out a week ago, and I still want to talk about how excited I am to read this one! Be Dazzled is advertised as a queer romance where Project Runway goes to Comic Con, and that’s all I need to know to know that this book is perfect for me. There’s crafting in it, cosplay, and a second chance romance all tied up in what sounds like the cutest witty read.
You Have a Match by Emma Lord | Releasing Jan. 12th (today)!
I LOVED Emma Lord’s Tweet Cute, and the second I heard she was coming up with another novel, I knew I needed it in my hands. I was actually lucky enough to score a copy of this one on Netgalley, and it ended up being a unique, heartwarming read. While this one has a much more toned down romance, it places a much larger emphasis on meaningful, familial relationships. In You Have a Match, the MC discovers a newfound long-lost sister through a DNA test, and the entire book focuses heavily on their developing sisterly bond, as well as how their family ties into this hidden relationship, all in an enjoyable summer camp setting.
Cast in Firelight by Dana Swift | Releasing Jan. 19th
With all these contemporaries, of course I’m going to have to balance it out with a little fantasy! This one has SUCH an interesting magic-system concept, with witches and wizards who cast magic in nine different colors. It also features a little arranged marriage, BUT when they unknowingly meet up in their secret identities, they realize that they must work together in order to save their world. The romance isn’t the hate-to-love I was expecting, but according to the author, it is a “rivalry-to-lovers with banter and sexual tension” which is quite honestly all I ever need.
A Vow so Bold and Deadly by Brigid Kemmerer | Releasing Jan. 26th
Of course, January isn’t complete until we include A Vow so Bold and Deadly! This is actually the final book in the Cursebreakers series, and I’m not exaggerating when I say that I’ve been waiting for this release for FOREVER. I need to know what happens to all of these characters (especially Grey and Rhen) and I just need to make sure that they’re all happy and safe. I’m going to riot if there isn’t a happy ending. Plus, I’m really excited that it’s four POVs so we get a little bit of everyone!
Wings of Ebony by J. Elle | Releasing Jan. 26th
The gorgeous cover drew me in immediately, and the intriguing synopsis fits it perfectly. This is a debut urban fantasy filled with POC representation and magic. In this, Rue is a half-god, half-human, who must return to her hometown of Houston in order to “save her neighborhood before the gods burn it to the ground.” From what I’ve read from ARC reviewers, it covers a lot of important topics, such as both racism and colonization, making it an seem like an incredibly thoughtful, powerful novel.
Muse by Brittany Cavallaro | Releasing Feb. 2nd
I usually don’t read historical fiction, but the 19th century, World’s Fair setting really intrigued me. This story takes place in an alternate history, where America is a monarchy and the MC’s touch has the power to grant wishes. It’s advertised as American Royals meets The Winner’s Curse, which I think is a combination that has great potential! Plus, the cover is absolutely gorgeous with it’s pretty design and blue/orange color combination.
The Gilded Ones by Namina Forna | Releasing Feb. 9th
I swear, I’ve already seen this one everywhere, even though we still have a month to go! It’s probably one of my most anticipated debut novels–for a reason. In this feminist YA fantasy, the MC discovers that she is alaki, a group of near-immortals with rare gifts after her blood runs gold in a blood ceremony. It sounds like an incredibly empowering read, covering important topics of racism, xenophobia, and misogyny in a west-African inspired world.
A Pho Love Story by Loan Le | Releasing Feb. 9th
This sounds like the most ADORABLE rom-com contemporary, and I am incredibly excited about it. There’s Vietnamese representation, along with a Romeo + Juliet twist that I cannot wait for. In this, both MCs try to navigate their relationship with their family’s age-old restaurant feud. This one reminds me a little of Tweet Cute, which had a grilled-cheese restaurant feud, which I absolutely loved last year, so I have high hopes for this one!
As Far As You’ll Take Me by Phil Stamper | Releasing Feb. 9th
This one sounds like a truly amazing LGBT coming-of-age contemporary. In this, oboe-player Marty escapes his conservative Kentucky hometown in order to find a new life in London as an orchestra member. Through his journey in this foreign place, he begins to explore his own identity within his emotional struggles. I really liked how there is representation with anxiety in this one, and I think that this one has potential to be a meaningful, compelling story.
A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J. Maas | Releasing Feb. 16th
Even though the cover is as ugly as it is, it won’t stop me from reading another one of SJM’s releases! I actually really enjoyed the ACOTAR series, and thought it ended quite well, so I’m excited (and a little nervous) to see where she takes this one! I am personally not a Nesta fan, but I’m still excited to read about the dynamic and relationship between her and Cassian in this book. I’m really hoping that we get to see more of Nesta’s inner complexities (
and more redeeming qualities) that haven’t been explored yet in the prior novels, with her being the focus of this one!
Of Silver and Shadow by Jennifer Gruenke | Releasing Feb. 16th
This book sounds a little darker than the more typical YA fantasies but I think that it could be an interesting touch if done well. In this, Ren is a silver wielder, who struggles to survive in a world where magic is outlawed. However, her secret is soon discovered, where she must then join a revolution to help overthrow the king. There’s slow burn enemies to lovers in this one (the best trope ever), plus apparently some really good witty banter, which is my absolute weakness.
Chain of Iron by Cassandra Clare | Releasing Mar. 2nd
If I could only have one release from the entirety of 2021, this one would (stereotypically) be the one! I can’t wait to see what happens to the cast of the characters, especially with that fake-engagement in Chain of Gold! I need to know if Matthew is happy and safe, since he deserves a lot better than being alone all the time. I ALSO need to know what’s going to happen with Grace’s bracelet! I’ve been reading excerpts on her Tumblr and there are just so many things I need to know.
The Bright and the Pale by Jessica Rubinkowski | Releasing Mar. 2nd
This one is another debut, marketed as The Bear and the Nightingale meets Shadow and Bone! In this one, Valeria must lead a group of cutthroats and thieves to a magical mountain who trapped her family in an unbreakable sheet of ice. The winter atmosphere is perfect for the concluding winter season, and it sounds like such a great book to cozy up to. It is also inspired by Slavic mythology, which I feel like could be a unique, intriguing aspect.
Sweet & Bitter Magic by Adrienne Tooley | Releasing Mar. 9th
The concept of this one is just *perfect* and I totally agree with another reviewer that it sounds like a sapphic Beauty and the Beast Retelling! It’s about a witch, Tamsin, cursed to never love again, unless she steals it from others. She strikes a bargain with Wren, who agrees to give up her love for her father in return for helping stop the plague that hit him. I can’t wait to see how the romance develops in this one, and I really like that it’s a standalone (since I’m horrible at catching up on sequels)!
Sing Me Forgotten by Jessica S. Olson | Releasing Mar. 9th
This is a gender-swapped Phantom of the Opera inspired novel, and I am totally here for it! Isda is one of the few magical people who can manipulate memories when she sings, and must hide this from the world, who wants people like her dead. I think that her role as a morally-gray protagonist, could make for a really interesting story. She also falls in love with a sweet, charming guy named Emeric, and I feel like the entire contrast in their personalities could make for a fun, swoony romance as well.
Perfect on Paper by Sophie Gonzales | Releasing Mar. 9th
I had actually gotten an ARC of this one a few weeks back, but only recently discovered that she had also written Only Mostly Devastated, which was a super cute, relatable read I finished a week or two ago. I am horrible at getting to books on time, so I haven’t started it, but it sounds like a super fun rom-com featuring a bisexual lead! In this, Darcy is hired by a guy she cannot stand to be a personal dating coach to help him get his ex back! I can already sense how the romance is going to pan out, and it is making me even more excited to get to it.
Namesake by Adrienne Young | Releasing Mar. 16th
I read Fable in the summer of 2020, and I found it to be such a compelling pirate-themed read! I feel like there really aren’t that many books that have a setting at sea, so it was refreshing to see its central presence in this series. I didn’t think that there was enough development in the romance with the first book, so I’m especially interested in seeing if it progresses further in the sequel! Anyways, I’m excited to return back to this world, and I’m looking forward to see what happens next.
The Secret Recipe for Moving On by Karen Bischer | Releasing Mar. 23rd
This honestly sounds like the cutest feel-good contemporary read! After being dumped by her boyfriend on the first day of school, Ellie finds herself sharing a life skills class with him, his girlfriend, and a family of “misfits,” whom she must work with. However, with a in-class competition, she learns to bond with her classmates in what looks like a bit of a “found family”! I love the idea of all of these different perspectives coming together, and I think that it could make for a light, fun read.
Prom Theory by Ann LaBar | Releasing Mar. 30th
This totally gives me some “The Kiss Quotient” vibes, and with the most adorable cover, I had to put it on this list! The MC, Iris, has a learning disorder and attempts to navigate it socially with science and chemistry. In order to prove to her best friend that there’s not much to love, she tests her theory by trying to get a popular guy, Theo, to ask her to prom. This just sounds like such a cute read, and the synopsis & cover just make this sound like something I’d really enjoy.
That concludes all 19 of my anticipated releases! I hope you enjoyed reading through this post and I hope that you found something interesting to add to your TBR! I haven’t done much research on anticipated releases prior to making this post, and I’ve found so many more amazing books that I can’t wait for.
Let me know if you’re interested in reading any of these, or if they already caught your eye before! Or please do let me know if you have anything else you’re interested in…I love receiving recommendations! I hope you all have an amazing Tuesday!