Ah, it’s the end of the year and what a great year it’s been! I hope that 2022 brought you some amazing reading, and that you found some of your favorite books of all time this year. And if not…don’t worry, because the year isn’t over yet! While December usually sees publishing pumping the brakes on new release season (think of it as a nice little hibernation until 2023), we still have some really great books to look forward to this month, including new releases by some of your favorites like Maureen Johnson, Adiba Jaigirdar, and Z.R. Ellor, and highly anticipated sequels alongside amazing new standalones!
Whether you enjoy a twisty murder mystery, a high fantasy, or a queer romance, December’s new YA releases have got you covered. Make sure you add these last-minute releases to your holiday wishlists…or plan on using up all those bookstore gift cards on these new books! Because of the end of the year slow down, this list isn’t quite as diverse as we’d normally like to see, so I definitely recommend checking out some of the best diverse YA books of 2022.
Note: These release dates were accurate at the time of publication, but sometimes delays in the supply chain cause dates to shift. Double check release dates if you want to be absolutely certain of when a book will come out!
Acting the Part by Z.R. Ellor (December 6)
Lily is an actor on a hugely popular TV show, playing a girl whose on-screen romance with another girl has earned her a cult-like following. Lily understands that queer girl representation in TV isn’t always the best, so when rumors leak that Lily’s character’s love interest is about to be killed off, Lily decides take matters in their own hands. But as their fake-dating schemes and publicity stunts gain traction among fans, Lily is also questioning their own gender identity and what it means for them, and their career.
Yesterworld by Rebecca Phelps (December 6)
In this sequel to Down World, Marina is living a happy enough life after her discovery of the doors leading to other worlds, and she’s trying to focus on the mundane aspects of life: grades, college, and high school life. But when her new history teacher confronts her with the truth about her secret ability, Marina finds herself drawn back to the doors…
This Cursed Crown by Alexandra Overy (December 6)
Following the ending of These Feathered Flames, Izaveta has awoken in a tower, trapped and unable to get a message to her sister. Asya, meanwhile, is desperate to find out where Izaveta disappeared to even as her political opponents are closing in. These sisters will have to race against the clock in order to find a way to reunite and save their kingdom.
Lumara by Melissa Landers (December 6)
Talia is shocked to discover that her boyfriend Nathanial isn’t a mortal like she, but in fact part of a very powerful mystic family that most outsiders would kill to be a part of. And with a very important magical wedding coming up, Talia is granted rare access to their community as Nathaniel’s date…but she doesn’t want anything to do with it. Unfortunately for her, she agrees to go, for Nathaniel’s sake, and soon finds herself the scapegoat of a magical attack that puts dozens in a magical coma. Now Talia has to find a way to clear her name before she’s trapped forever.
No Accident by Laura Bates (December 6)
When seven teens board a plane, they have no idea that they won’t be making their destination. Instead, the plane crashes and the teens wash up on a deserted island, scared and desperate. As they struggle to meet their immediate needs, survival is first and foremost on their minds…until a series of accidents indicate that the plane crash was just the beginning. Someone among the survivors orchestrated this crash, and will do anything to keep a terrible secret. Can they survive the elements — and each other — before rescue?
The Shattered City by Lisa Maxwell (December 6)
In this newest book in The Last Magician series, Esta and Harte are on the hunt for the last artifact they need in order to bind the all-powerful Book…and now their search brings them back to New York. But with their friends scattered far and wide and time running out, they aren’t sure if they’ll be able to find the final artifact in time to stop what they’ve started.
A Million to One by Adiba Jaigirdar (December 13)
Set aboard the Titanic, this audacious heist story stars Josefa, who is looking to pull off the biggest con of all: Stealing the Rubiyat from its locked vault aboard the ship. She assembles a crack team to help her, but it’s not long before all four girls discover that they’ll be lucky to escape the Titanic with their lives, let alone with their score.
Nine Liars by Maureen Johnson (December 27)
It’s senior year for Stevie Bell and it’s not exactly going great. Her friends are obsessed with college apps, her boyfriend is studying abroad in London, and worst of all? She doesn’t have a case. But when she’s invited to London, she gets hooked on a nearly 30-year-old cold case of nine friends from Cambridge University whose fun weekend ended in murder…and she suspects that the survivors are lying about what really happened.
Want more great YA releases? Check out our round up of November YA releases.