A buzzworthy YA debut that combines queer romance with a slow-burn, small-town mystery is on the way to library shelves.
We Deserve Monuments by Jas Hammonds
Seventeen-year-old Avery Anderson is convinced her senior year is ruined when she's uprooted from her life in DC and forced into the hostile home of her terminally ill grandmother, Mama Letty. The tension between Avery’s mom and Mama Letty makes for a frosty arrival and unearths past drama they refuse to talk about. Every time Avery tries to look deeper, she’s turned away, leaving her desperate to learn the secrets that split her family in two.
While tempers flare in her avoidant family, Avery finds friendship in unexpected places: in Simone Cole, her captivating next-door neighbor, and Jade Oliver, daughter of the town’s most prominent family—whose mother’s murder remains unsolved.
As the three girls grow closer—Avery and Simone’s friendship blossoming into romance—the sharp-edged opinions of their small southern town begin to hint at something insidious underneath. The racist history of Bardell, Georgia is rooted in Avery’s family in ways she can’t even imagine. With Mama Letty's health dwindling every day, Avery must decide if digging for the truth is worth toppling the delicate relationships she's built in Bardell—or if some things are better left buried.
What’s New This Month
A whole selection of other intriguing YA debuts are also on the way, along with a collection of reimagined fairy tales, a buzzworthy new manga series, and new books from authors like Holly Jackson, Abbi Glines, Kiera Cass, Shea Earnshaw, Adrienne Young, and more.
What We’re Reading
Here are some quotes from library staff about the books in the newest list of recommended picks:
by Rainbow Rowell & Faith Erin Hicks: “This book is a sweet story about wholesome friendships that are made while working at a pumpkin patch. But college is right around the corner and the teens are going to make the most of their time together. There's adventure, and encouragement and a little bit of romance.”
America: The Life and Times of America Chavez
by Gabby Rivera: “Gabby Rivera wrote my favorite story arc in the Marvel universe. Full of action, adventure, romance, and comedy. America goes off to university and punches Nazis.”
Very, Very, Very Dreadful: The Influenza Pandemic of 1918
by Albert Marrin: “Published one century after the 1918 influenza pandemic and merely one year prior to COVID-19, this title captures the chilling horror of the time while (accidentally) causing readers to draw connections with our present.”
For more lists of recommended reads from the book world and beyond: