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YA Shout Outs: Chills and Thrills for the Summer

Summer heat got you down? Stay cool and liven up your TBR with these chilling and thrilling staff picks from our Tor Teen team.


Category Five by Ann Dávila Cardinal

“If you’re looking for a summer read that will give you a double dose of both thrills AND chills, look no further than Category Five—the second novel in Bram Stoker Award finalist Ann Dávila Cardinal’s YA horror series, Five Midnights. In this immersive and suspenseful sequel, our beloved characters from the first book, Lupe, Javier, and Marisol, return to investigate a new supernatural mystery haunting the island of Puerto Rico in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria. Similar to Five Midnights, Category Five sucks you in from the very first chapter and doesn’t let up. Cardinal masterfully draws readers into a compelling mystery surrounding a string of unsettling murders and enriches her narrative with powerful commentary on the real-life horrors the people of Puerto Rico face following one of the deadliest disasters the world has ever known. A word of advice to my fellow book nerds: do not sleep on this eerie and thought-provoking Boricua horror series!”

—Isa Caban, Marketing Manager

 

Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake

“She’s a dangerous spirit still wearing her dress from the night of her brutal murder back in 1958, now stained with ectoplasmic blood. He’s a professional killer of the vengeful dead. This is a thrilling and chilling story. Cas Lowood inherited his profession from his father, who died at the hands (do ghosts have hands? Spectral hands?) of an angry ghost. This is the job that leads him to Anna, a spirit who has killed anyone who has dared enter her deserted home. But Anna doesn’t kill Cas. She spares him. And this is, of course only the beginning. Anna Dressed in Blood is a story of friendship, loss, and revenge that’s eerie to the core.”

—Andrew King, Marketing Assistant

 

 Last Girls by Demetra Brodsky

“The end of the world as we know it. Fear, uncertainty, and doubt. Lies piled on top of lies. In Last Girls by Demetra Brodsky, all of these facets come together in a masterfully crafted story that’ll keep you on the edge of your seat right up to the very end. Honey, Birdie, and Blue Juniper value sisterhood and sticking together above all elsewhich is their mantra for surviving daily life on the secret prepper compound nestled deep in the woods where they live with their mother. For as long as they can remember, the Juniper sisters have been preparing for the day when everything will inevitably end. The idea of the world ending may seem distant and uncertain, but when danger strikes from within the very compound that is supposed to keep them safe, the sisters must be responsible, reactive, and ready in order keep their own world from falling apart. What they don’t know, though, is that sometimes things must come to an end in order for others to begin. With twists at every turn and thrills that’ll keep you on your toes, Last Girls is perfect for anyone looking for a gripping book full of secrets and survival. As this story unfolds, one thing is for sure: DTADon’t. Trust. Anyone.”

—Ariana Carpentieri, Assistant to VP. Marketing & Publicity

 

Wilder Girls by Rory Power

“If sapphic horror about monster girls sounds like your cup of tea (or, glass of lemonade, since we’re talking about summer reads), you’ll want to pick up this heart-stopping YA horror book. Wilder Girls takes place at the isolated Raxter School for Girls eighteen months into a deadly plague called the Tox. The girls are trapped on this island while the CDC searches for a cure (which feels a bit too real at the moment), and as they’ve been infected by the Tox, their bodies morph into strange, monstrous, and foreign things. The story follows Hetty as she searches for her best friend Byatt, who went missing after a flare-up of her symptoms. The more Hetty searches, the more secrets she realizes have been kept from her and her friends. I loved this book’s beautiful prose, which at times felt as untamed and wild as the girls at Raxter. If you loved Annihilation by Jeff Vandermeer, this should undoubtedly be your next read. Tread lightly, however, this book has a lot of body horror and gore!”

—Sarah Pannenberg, Digital Marketing Coordinator

 

Chasing Starlight by Teri Bailey Black

“Take a trip back to the Golden Age of Hollywood to a time of glitz, glamor, musicals, and, of course, murder in Chasing Starlight by Teri Bailey Black. Kate Hildebrand is a society girl and aspiring astronomer. She’s dealt with fame in the past thanks to a childhood tragedy, and she’s jaded on the gossip and paparazzi. When her aunt remarries, Kate moves to Hollywood to live with her grandfather, a former silent film star who has filled his run-down mansion with a motley crew of would-be actors…if their criminal pasts don’t catch up with them. Now Kate has her hands full working on the set of a musical while trying to find a murderer. Can she keep the cast alive, protect her own heart, and stay out of the limelight?”

—Becky Yeager, Ad/Promo Manager

 

 An Education in Ruin by Alexis Bass

“Scandal. Greed. Love. Revenge. These are the ingredients that make this lush and sophisticated thriller the perfect summer read. The Mahoney brothers are the popular, golden boys of Rutherford Institute. But they’re hiding something. Enter Collins Pruitt. Collins earns the boys’ trust, and plans to expose them for who they really are. But as she gets drawn deeper into their orbit, she is threatening to also expose her very own secrets. Just how far will she go to ruin them, without destroying herself?”  

—Anthony Parisi, Associate Director of Marketing

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