Modern Magic: 12 Tantalizing Tales for Teens

I know you’ve been waiting anxiously, dear readers, for this third list in my series of teen fantasy and science fiction lists. This was made in collaboration with our teen librarian, Barb Dinan, and the graphic and the blurbs are by our amazing intern Nick Rapson.  That means every book on this list (except for A Song Below Water, which I’m expecting to read very soon) comes recommended by one or both of us.  There is a lot of good reading here!

Modern Magic

Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Córdova “Rose Mortiz has brand new powers that she doesn’t understand, and her family is still trying to figure out how to function after her amnesiac father’s return home. Then, on the night of her Death Day party, Rose discovers her father’s memory loss has been a lie.”

The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness “What if you aren’t the Chosen One? What if you’re like Mikey, who just wants to graduate and go to prom before someone goes and blows up the high school? Because sometimes you just have to find the extraordinary in your ordinary life.”

The Cruel Prince by Holly Black “Jude was seven when she and her two sisters were stolen away to live in the High Court of Faerie. But Prince Cardan, the youngest and wickedest son of the High King, despises humans. To win a place at the Court, she must defy him–and face the consequences.”

Don’t Date Rosa Santos by Nina Moreno “Rosa Santos is cursed by the sea – at least, that’s what they say. Dating her is bad news, especially if you’re a boy with a boat. With her heart, her family, and her future on the line, can Rosa break a curse and find her place beyond the horizon?”

The Epic Crush of Genie Lo by F.C. Yee “The struggle to get into a top-tier college consumes sixteen-year-old Genie’s every waking thought. But when she discovers she’s a celestial spirit who’s powerful enough to bash through the gates of heaven with her fists, her perfectionist existence is shattered.”

Five Midnights by Ann Dávila Cardinal “If Lupe Dávila and Javier Utierre can survive each other’s company, together they can solve a series of grisly murders sweeping through Puerto Rico. But the clues lead them out of the real world and into the realm of myths and legends.”

Race to the Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse “If Nizhoni, Mac, and Davery can reach the House of the Sun, they will be outfitted with what they need to defeat the ancient monsters of Navajo legend Mr. Charles has unleashed. But it will take more than weapons for Nizhoni to become the hero she was destined to be . . .”

Shadowshaper by Daniel José Older “Sierra Santiago was looking forward to a fun summer around Brooklyn. But then a weird zombie guy crashes the first party of the season. And when the graffiti murals in Bed-Stuy start to weep….something stranger than the usual New York mayhem is going on.”

Song Below Water by Bethany C. Morrow “In a society determined to keep her under lock and key, Tavia must hide her siren powers. Meanwhile, Effie is fighting her own family struggles, pitted against literal demons from her past. Together, these best friends must navigate through the perils of high school’s junior year.”

Summer of Salt by Katrina Leno “Georgina Fernweh waits with growing impatience for the tingle of magic in her fingers—magic that has been passed down through every woman in her family. But with her eighteenth birthday looming at the end of this summer, Georgina fears her gift will never come.”

Undead Girl Gang by Lily Anderson “When best friend Riley and two Fairmont Academy mean girls die under suspicious circumstances, Mila refuses to believe everyone’s explanation that her BFF was involved in a suicide pact. Instead, Mila does the unthinkable to uncover the truth: she brings the girls back to life.”

Wicked Fox by Kat Cho “Eighteen-year-old Gu Miyoung has a secret – she’s a gumiho, a nine-tailed fox who must devour the energy of men in order to survive. Because so few believe in the old tales anymore, and with so many evil men no one will miss, the modern city of Seoul is the perfect place to hide and hunt.”

Also consider Slay by Brittney Morris, which is realistic to sci-fi with a fantasy feel and Legendborn by Tracy Deonn, which definitely fits and is coming out in September.  

What books would you add to this list? 


About Katy K.

I'm a librarian and book worm who believes that children and adults deserve great books to read.
This entry was posted in Books, Fantasy, Lists, Teen/Young Adult and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Modern Magic: 12 Tantalizing Tales for Teens

  1. Natalie Aguirre says:

    I’ve only read Holly Black’s book on list, and I’d really enjoy it. I’d add The False Prince series by Jennifer Nielsen and Spin the Dawn and Unravel the Dusk by Elizabeth Lim.

    • Katy K. says:

      Thank you! This list is specifically just contemporary fantasy, but both of those would fit well on the Magical Quests list I did a little bit ago.

  2. Pingback: Teen Love: This is My Brain in Love, Secret of a Heart Note, and Don’t Date Rosa Santos | alibrarymama

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