Booklist: The B E S T Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror 2009
With teen fascination for vampires, werewolves, and all things fantastical still going strong, VOYA is pleased to present our annual compilation of the best science fiction, fantasy, and horror books that have been reviewed in VOYA between June 2009 and April 2010. These titles have earned 5Q or 5P ratings for literary excellence and popular appeal among teen readers and form an excellent source for updating your collection.
Barron, T. A. Merlin’s Dragon: Doomraga’s Revenge. Merlin’s Dragon, Book Two. Philomel, 2009. 238p. $19.99. 978-0-399-25212-9. VOYA December 2009. 5Q 4P M J
The violence erupting throughout Avalon foretells that something big will soon happen. Merlin’s dragon, Basil, is determined to help keep the peace, but there is someone behind the chaos just beginning to plan his revenge.
Barry, Dave, and Ridley Peterson. Peter and the Sword of Mercy. Starcatchers, Volume 4. Hyperion/DBG, 2009. 528p. $18.99. 978-1-4231-2134-3. VOYA February 2010. 4Q 5P M J
Twenty-three years after his last adventure with the Starcatchers, Peter now teams up with Wendy, the daughter of his now-grown friend Molly, to stop the evil Ombra from taking over the world.
Berry, Julie. The Amaranth Enchantment. Bloomsbury, 2009. 306p. $16.99. 978-1-59990-334-7. VOYA June 2009. 5Q 4P M J S
Berry delivers a stunning debut fairy-tale novel with strong characters, a twisting and moving plot, and captivating action that will draw in readers, who will find themselves surprisingly enchanted by the tale.
Chima, Cinda Williams. The Demon King. Hyperion/DBG, 2009. 512p. $17.99. 978-1-4231-1823-7. VOYA October 2009. 5Q 5P M J S
Han, reformed thief, and Raisa, princess heir to the Fells queendom, follow parallel journeys of danger as they seek to discover themselves and handle the power they have been given.
Cockcroft, Jason. Counter Clockwise. Katherine Tegen Books/HarperCollins, 2009. 202p. $15.99. 978-0-06-125554-0. PLB $16.89. 978-0-06-125555-7. VOYA June 2009. 5Q 4P M J
Nathan lost his mother a year ago when she was struck by a bus. His father desperately wants to go back in time to save her, but if he succeeds, will Nathan lose them both?
Collins, Suzanne. Catching Fire. Scholastic, 2009. 391p. $17.99. 978-0-439-02349-8. VOYA December 2009. 5Q 4P S
In spite of the control that the Capitol asserts over the districts, rebellion is spreading through the land and Katniss is the unwilling catalyst and symbol for all who fight for freedom in Panem. All she wants, though, is her old life back.
Dashner, James. The Maze Runner. Delacorte, 2009. 384p. $16.99. 978-0-385-73794-4. PLB $24.99. 978-0-385-90702-6. VOYA December 2009. 5Q 4P J S
Thomas and the gladers must fight for their survival against the terrors of the maze, unaware of the motives and intentions of the Creators.
De Lint, Charles. Muse and Reverie. Tor, 2009. 352p. $25.99. 978-0-7653-2340-8. VOYA April 2010. 5Q 4P S A/YA
Experiencing de Lint’s fictional realm of Newford is like going on vacation to a remote, exotic destination and never wanting to come back again.
Doyle, Marissa. Betraying Season. Henry Holt, 2009. 352p. $16.95. 978-0-8050-8252-4. VOYA October 2009. 5Q 4P J S
Teenage twins Penelope and Persephone Leland secretly practice witchcraft in Victorian England in Doyle’s compelling series, which deftly blends historical fiction with magic and romance. This installment finds Penelope in Ireland, where she encounters both treachery and love.
Fantaskey, Beth. Jessica’s Guide to Dating on the Dark Side. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2009. 368p. $17.99. 978-0-15-206384-9. $8.99 Trade pb. 978-0-547-25940-6. VOYA June 2009. 5Q 5P J S
An American teen is revealed to be the long-lost Romanian vampire princess Anastasia Dragomir, who was betrothed at birth to a dangerous, brooding vampire prince named Lucius Vladescu, and who must save her family from ruin.
Garcia, Kami, and Margaret Stohl. Beautiful Creatures. Little, Brown, 2009. 576p. $17.99. 978-0-316-04267-3. VOYA December 2009. 4Q 5P J S
When frightening dreams suggest that high school s tudent s Ethan Wate and Lena Duchannes have lived and loved before, they uncover a secret that binds them and a deadly curse that promises to separate them forever.
Glass, Bryan J. L. The Prophecy. Michael Avon Oeming, artist. Image Comics, 2009. 256p. $29.99. 978-1-58240-871-2. VOYA June 2009. 5Q 4P M J G
Karic sets out to revive the Mice Templar across the Dark Lands and find his captive friends and save them, but Pilot and the mysterious mouse stalking them have plans of their own.
Golding, Julia. Dragonfly. Marshall Cavendish, 2009. 390p. $17.99. 978-0-7614-5582-0. VOYA December 2009. 5Q 4P J S
The betrothal of Princess Taoshira and Prince Ramil endures a rocky start after they are kidnapped and must learn to trust each other to survive in this fantastical, romantic masterpiece filled with adventure, betrayal, combat, and loyalty.
Grant, Michael. Hunger. A Gone Novel. HarperTeen, 2009. 608p. $17.99. 978-0-06-144906-2. PLB $18.89. 978-0-06-144907-9. VOYA June 2009. 5Q 5P M J S
Continuing the clever story line begun in Gone, this sequel follows the same engaging teen characters facing challenges that would make grown men cry.
Gray, Amy. How to Be a Vampire: A Fangs-On Guide for the Newly Undead. Candlewick, 2009. 141p. $14.99. 978-0-7636-4915-9. VOYA April 2010. 5Q 4P J S
Both serious and lighthearted and with everything from quizzes and beauty tips to extensive lists of various media, this novel combines loads of information with lush fullcolor layouts to provide a “must-have” guide for vampire fans.
Jacques, Brian. Sable Quean: A Tale of Redwall. Philomel, 2010. 416p. $23.99. 978-0-399-25164-1. VOYA December 2009. 5Q 5P M J
Jacques’s latest title snares any beast meandering about its first several pages as heroic and rebellious Buckler, Blademaster hare of the Long Patrol, thwarts the insidious plan to take over the Redwall Abbey by evil Villaya, the Sable Quean, and her underling, the fiendish Zwilt the Shade.
Johnston, Antony, and Ben Templesmith. Dead Space. $24.95. Image Comics, 2008. 978-1-60706-033-8. Illus. VOYA June 2009. 5Q 4P S A/YA G
In this graphic novel prequel to the survival horror videogame of the same name, miners on Aegis VII unearth an artifact that resurrects and mutates their dead into monsters that stalk the living. While the survivors fight to stay alive, the Church of Unitology back on Earth plots to extract the artifact.
Landy, Derek. The Faceless Ones. Skulduggery Pleasant, Book Three. HarperTeen, 2009. 422p. $16.99. 978-0-06-124091-1. PLB $18.89. 978-0-06-124092-8. VOYA December 2009. 4Q 5P M J S
In this fast-paced series installment, fourteenyear-old Valkyrie Cain (aka Stephanie Edgley) fights alongside the animated skeleton detective Skulduggery Pleasant in an effort to keep the evil Faceless Ones from returning to their world.
Manning, Matthew. Wolverine: Inside the World of the Living Weapon. DK, 2009. 200p. $24.99. 978-0-7566-4547-2. VOYA October 2009. 5Q 4P M J S
On the heels of the latest movie about one of Marvel’s signature mutant superheroes comes everything anyone ever needs to know about the popular comic book mainstay.
Michaelis, Antonia. Dragons of Darkness. Trans. by Anthea Bell. Harry N. Abrams, 2010. 568p. $18.95. 978-0-8109-4074-1. VOYA February 2010. 5Q 4P S
Magic realism set in Nepal has two fourteenyear-old boys, one of them invisible, joining to combat Maoist guerrillas, a planned military coup, and dragons that are devastating the land.
O’Hearn, Kate. Shadow of the Dragon: Kira. Kane Miller/EDC, 2009. 320p. $16.99. 978-1-935279-05-1. VOYA October 2009. 5Q 4P J S
When Lord Dorcon arrives to imprison Kira and her sister for being unmarried females, they run to dangerous Rogue’s Mountain, where Kira discovers the fate of the kingdom’s girls hinges on her willingness to fulfill her own destiny.
Osterlund, Anne. Academy 7. Speak/Penguin, 2009. 272p. $8.99 Trade pb. 978-0-14-241437-8. VOYA August 2009. 4Q 5P S A/YA
Aerin Renning and Dane Madousin, students at exclusive Academy 7, discover that the family secrets threatening to tear them apart also bind them in ways they could never have imagined.
Pierce, Tamora. Bloodhound: Beka Cooper, Book Two: A Tortall Legend. Random House, 2009. 551p. $18.99. 978-0-375-81469-3. PLB $21.99. 978-0-375-91469-0. VOYA August 2009. 4Q 5P M J S
Beka Cooper is back in this police procedural fantasy. A former police trainee, she is now a junior police officer involved in the investigation of a counterfeiting ring that leads to both danger and romance.
Pon, Cindy. Silver Phoenix. Greenwillow, 2009. 352p. $17.99. 978-0-06-173021-4. PLB $18.89. 978-0-06-178033-2. VOYA Augus t 2009. 4Q 5P S A/YA
After battling a series of gruesome demon spirits, Ai Ling learns that she is the reincarnation of Silver Phoenix, an ancient soul who must defeat evil.
Reeve, Philip. Fever Crumb. Scholastic, 2010. 336p. $17.99. 978-0-545-20719-5. VOYA April 2010. 5Q 4P M J
Fever Crumb’s remarkable tale occurs in postapocalyptic London where Dickens-worthy characters struggle in a paradoxical society. A prequel to the Hungry City Chronicles, this marvelously well-written book stands alone.
Riordan, Rick. The Last Olympian. Percy Jackson and the Olympians, Book 5. Hyperion/DBG, 2009. 314p. $17.99. 978-1-4231-0147-5. VOYA June 2009. 4Q 5P M J
The fifth and final series installment unfolds a long-awaited prophecy as Percy is thrust into an epic showdown for the survival of Western civilization.
Sage, Angie. Syren. Septimus Heap, Volume 5. Illus. by Mark Zug. Katherine Tegen Books/HarperCollins, 2009. 640p. $17.99. 978-0-06-088210-5. VOYA February 2010. 4Q 5P M J
A jinnee with an attitude; a fuming, murderous wizard; an injured dragon; and a mysterious luring voice all challenge Senior-Apprentice Septimus Heap and his intrepid friend while on another rousing adventure.
Sanderson, Brandon. Alcatraz Versus the Knights of Crystallia. Scholastic, 2009. 336p. $16.99. 978-0-439-92555-6. VOYA October 2009. 5Q 4P M
A sect of Librarians has approached the Council of Kings to sign a peace treaty, but there must be something evil lurking behind the offer. Can Alcatraz figure out what the Librarians are up to and save the day or will his growing fame forever distract him from doing anything useful?
Scalora, Suza, with Francesca Lia Block. Evidence of Angels. HarperCollins, 2009. 60p. $19.99. 978-0-06-124343-1. Photos. VOYA December 2009. 5Q 4P M J S
This book’s unique format lends itself to a look at an uncommon subject, with photographs that tell the story well beyond the text itself.
Shusterman, Neal. Everwild. Simon & Schuster, 2009. 424p. $16.99. 978-1-4169-5863-5. VOYA February 2010. 5Q 4P J
Nick and Allie seek their destinies in Everlost as Nick battles the Sky Witch for the souls of dead children and Allie flirts with a connection to the living world.
Stiefvater, Maggie. Shiver. The Wolves of Mercy Falls, Volume 1. Scholastic, 2009. 400p. $18.99. 978-0-545-12326-6. VOYA April 2009. 5Q 5P J S
Sam loves Grace and wants to stay with her forever, and she feels the same way, but there is a problem: he is a werewolf, and she is a teenage girl—or is there more to her than meets the eye?
Stringer, Helen. Spellbinder. Feiwel and Friends/Macmillan, 2009. 384p. $17.99. 978-0-312-38763-1. VOYA February 2010. 5Q 4P M
Belladonna Johnson has a strange gift: she sees ghosts—everywhere. Suddenly the ghosts disappear and Belladonna can no longer see a single one, but she knows that something is terribly wrong . . . and she must act now.
Tan, Shaun. Tales from Outer Suburbia. Arthur A. Levine/Scholastic, 2009. 96p. $19.99. 978-0-545-05587-1. VOYA June 2009. 5Q 4P J S G
Wildly imaginative and delightfully unusual, Tan’s stories, told through an inventive combination of prose and artwork, encourage readers to blend their imaginations with reality to impart meaning to these fanciful, slightly disturbing glimpses of “outer suburbia.”
Taylor, Laini. Lips Touch: Three Times. Illus. by Jim Di Bartolo. Scholastic, 2009. 272p. $17.99. 978-0-545-05585-7. VOYA December 2009. 5Q 4P S
Three sensuous, supernatural stories about girls, goblins, demons, and soulless shape-shifters are inspired by English, Indian, and Zoroastrian mythologies.
Tennapel, Doug. Ghostopolis. Scholastic, 2010. 288p. $24.99. 978-0-545-21027-0. $14.99 Trade pb. 978-0-545-21028-7. VOYA February 2010. 5Q 4P M J G
The evil Vaughner has taken over the Seven Kingdoms of the afterlife with only a dying teen, a ghost, and an agent of the Supernatural Immigration Task Force standing in his way. Tennapel delivers the full package: laughs, romance, and breakneck adventure.
Troll’s Eye View: A Book of Villainous Tales. Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling, Eds. Viking/Penguin, 2009. 199p. $16.99. 978-0-670-06141-9. $7.99 Trade pb. 978-0-14-241673-0. Further Reading. VOYA October 2009. 5Q 4P M J S
Witches, giants, goblins, and other fairy-tale “bad guys” tell their side of the story in this well-penned collection of short stories and poems by some of fantasy’s most talented writers.
Vaught, S. R., and J. B. Redmond. Oathbreaker, Volume One : As s a s s in’s Apprent i c e . Bloomsbury, 2009. 321p. $10.99. 978-1-59990-162-6. VOYA August 2009. 4Q 4P J
In Eyrie, magically gifted children are taken by the Stone Guild and trained as assassins, but fifteen-year-old Aron does not want to be a murderer. When he is taken, he begins to question everything he knows about his world.
Williamson, Jill. By Darkness Hid. Blood of Kings, Book One. Marcher Lord Press, 2009. 410p. $13.99 Trade pb. 978-0-9821049-5-8. VOYA August 2009. 5Q 4P M J S
Achan and Sparrow are living as strays, but each possesses powers limited only to royalty. In this incredible medieval journey, two fates intertwine to reveal the ultimate struggle for power.
Zink, Michelle. Prophecy of the Sisters. Little, Brown, 2009. 352p. $17.99. 978-0-316-02742-7. VOYA October 2009. 5Q 4P J S
After the sudden and strange death of their father,Lia and her twin sister Alice find themselves pitted against each other as part of an ancient prophecy.
VOYA booklists are reproducible without permission for library, classroom, and workshop use. Reprinting in any medium for sale by a commercial or nonprofit entity or posting on the Internet requires written permission from the publisher.