Among many other things, a new month means new books! And this March, a truly sensational lineup of fantastic new releases are headed straight for the shelves of YA lovers everywhere. The best part? There are more and more releases by authors of color with amazing stories to tell!Diverse rep in fiction is incredibly important, especially in YA (young adult), as it’s read not just by teenagers, but by people of all ages who enjoy a good story. It’s a powerful thing to see yourself represented in a novel written by someone who shares your background and understands where you’re coming from, and it’s good for people who don’t come from that group to see that white and male is not the default! People of color can and should be the heroes in stories of all types and genres! Here are just five terrific novels written by women of color coming your way this March 2019.
The Everlasting Rose by Dhonielle Clayton
In this spellbinding sequel to Ms. Clayton’s gripping bestseller dystopian The Belles, Camille, her sister Edel and her guard Remy must race against time to find Princess Charlotte- but Imperial forces will stop at nothing to keep the rebels from returning Charlotte to her rightful place as queen. With the help of an underground resistance movement called The Iron Ladies- a society that rejects beauty treatments entirely- and the backing of alternative newspaper The Spider’s Web, Camille will use her powers, her connections and her cunning to outwit her nemesis Sophia and restore peace to all of Orleans. The Everlasting Rose comes out March 5 from Freeform.
The Weight of the Stars by K. Ancrum
In this evocative YA lesbian romance, K. Ancrum weaves a vivid tale of secrets and second chances. Ryann Bird dreams of traveling across the stars, but a career in space isn’t an option for a girl who lives in a trailer park on the “wrong" side of town. When Ryann settles for acting out, she meets Alexandria: a furious loner who spurns her offer of friendship. After a horrific accident, the girls are reluctantly brought together. Ryann learns that Alexandria’s astronaut mother volunteered for a one-way trip to the edge of the solar system and Alexandria waits every night to catch radio signals from her mother. Now it’s up to Ryann to lift her onto the roof day after day until the silence between them grows into friendship, and eventually something more. The Weight of the Stars comes out March 19 from Imprint.
Dealing in Dreams by Lilliam Rivera
Sixteen-year-old Nalah leads the fiercest all-girl crew in Mega City. That role brings with it violent throwdowns and access to the hottest bodega clubs, but Nalah quickly grows weary of her lifestyle. Her dream is to get off the streets and make a home in the exclusive Mega Towers, in which only a chosen few get in. To make it, Nalah must prove her loyalty to the city’s benevolent founder and cross the border in search of a mysterious gang- the Ashe Ryders. Led by a reluctant guide, Nalah battles crews and her own doubts; but the closer she gets to her goal, the more she loses sight of everything- and everyone- she cares about. Nalah must do the unspeakable to get what she wants- a place to call home. But is a home just where you live? Or is it who you choose to protect? Dealing in Dreams comes out March 5 from Simon & Schuster.
Internment by Samira Ahmed
Rebellions are built on hope. Set in a horrifying near-future United States, seventeen-year-old Layla Amin and her parents are forced into an internment camp for Muslim American citizens. With the help of newly made friends also trapped within the internment camp, her boyfriend on the outside, and an unexpected alliance, Layla begins a journey to fight for freedom, leading a revolution against the internment camp’s Director and his guards. Heart-racing and emotional, Internment challenges readers to fight complicit silence that exists in our society today. Internment comes out March 5 from Little, Brown Books for Young Readers.
The Shadow Glass by Rin Chupeco
In this stunning finale to the Bone Witch series, young witch Tea’s dark magic eats away at her, but she must save the one she loves most- even while her life and the Eight Kingdoms are on the brink of destruction. As a bone witch, Tea has used dark magic to breathe life into those she loved and lost...and those who would join her army against the deceitful royals. But Tea’s quest to conjure a shadow glass and achieve immortality for the one person she loves most in the world threatens to consume her. Tea must answer for her choices to a power greater than the elder asha or even her own conscience. Her life- and the fate of the Eight Kingdoms- hangs in the balance. The Shadowglass comes out March 5 from Sourcebooks.
With spring break just around the corner, March is shaping up to be a perfect month to curl up with a good book and be whisked away to a different place, whether it’s one of these fantastic reads or another! And of course, keep reading and talking about the diverse books you love. A great way to see more of these kinds of stories on our shelves is to spread the word and support the authors who write them!