Last Saturday, I was invited to Andersen Press’ Blogger Brunch to hear about their upcoming YA releases for 2018. Over the summer, I did a week of work experience at Andersen Press, and so it was so lovely to be invited back as a blogger, and I had a really great morning! We started the morning with some delicious brunch and a chat, and I met Louise, blogger at Book Murmation – we have been chatting on Twitter for a few months now, so it was really lovely to finally meet her! Harriet, Charlie, and Chloe from Andersen Press then gave us a presentation, going through each of the novels being released over the course of the year!
The first book is Rebound by Kwame Alexander, out in April this year. This is a prequel to the book The Crossover, also by Kwame Alexander, and what I find so interesting about this book is that it is told in the form of poetry. The story is about jazz and basketball, with each and every part told as a poem, which I think is really cool! We also watched a video from Kwame Alexander, who couldn’t be at the event with us, which was really interesting, and it was lovely to see all the work he does in schools in the UK. After that, we heard about Mud by Emily Thomas, out in July 2018. Told in the form of a diary, Mud is about a girl, living on a barge with her family, who has to cope with the many strains and grievances she and her family come under. Emily herself gave us some in depth insight into this book, and I was utterly transfixed by her storytelling. I was particularly excited to the cover of this book the screen, as in the summer, during my work experience, I sat in on a meeting where they were discussing the cover design for Mud, so it was really interesting to see the final result! Shadows by Meaghan McIsaac is the sequel to Movers, and has actually been out since the start of this month! The first book is set in a world where refugees are flooding in from the future, and in this novel, the protagonist has been thrown into the future – I will not go into too much detail (to avoid spoilers), but it sounds like a really action-packed, exciting read!
What Girls Are Made Of by Elena K. Arnold is out in August this year, and as soon I heard about this book, I knew it was going to be something else. It was described as a feminist book discussing abortion, identity and sex, in a way that isn’t overly-dramatised or glamourised, and I think this is exactly the sort of book YA needs. Out in October is No Fixed Address by Susin Neilsen, an author known for discussing important topics in a sensitive way, whilst adding an element of humour to make them accessible to a wide audience. Her latest novel is about the hidden homeless, and having read her two previous YA books, I am sure that No Fixed Address will be just as stunning. We also watched a lovely video Susin Neilsen made for us, where she spoke to us about No Fixed Address and showed us her cat!
Little Liar by Julia Gray is out in June 2018, and is about toxic friendships and misplaced loyalties – I personally love this kind of book, that focuses on friendships, so I cannot wait to read this. Chloe also did a Q&A with Julia Gray, where she revealed that despite being a lovely person herself, she finds it easier, in a way, to write characters who are NOT nice! Another upcoming Andersen Press release is The Lost Witch by Melvin Burgess which, as the title suggests, is about a lost witch who doesn’t know that she is a witch and is being hunted for what she is. I have actually never read anything by Melvin Burgess, but I think this will be a great place to start. On Saturday, Charlie told us all about The Lost Witch, and then we watched a short video message from Melvin, where he mostly talked about his trip to Australia! Finally, Monsters by Sharon Dogar is coming out in 2019, but we heard all about it on Saturday. This book is based on the life of Mary Shelley, author of Frankenstein, and Charlie told us her story which, as she points out, is so eventful it’s hard to believe it was her real life!
Andersen Press very generously gave everyone proof copies of five of the upcoming releases we heard about on Saturday – when I had a look at these, I was beyond excited, especially after hearing such great things about them! I also picked up a copy of Things a Bright Girl Can Do by Sally Nicholls, which is one of Andersen Press’ 2017 releases. Thank you so much to Andersen Press for hosting myself and all of the other bloggers – I had a great morning, and it was an excellent start to the weekend!