YA Standalone Books

YA Standalone Books

Sick of so many series? Every book here is its own self-contained story—no sequels in sight.


Compiled by:
Sam O. and Lizzy S.
Amal Unbound

Aisha Saeed
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Saeed)

Twelve-year-old Amal's dream of becoming a teacher one day is dashed in an instant when she accidentally insults a member of her Pakistani village's ruling family. As punishment for her behavior, she is forced to leave her heartbroken family behind and go work at their estate. Amal's becomes aware of the deadly measures the Khan family will go to in order to stay in control. It's clear that their hold over her village will never loosen as long as everyone is too afraid to challenge them--she must find a way to work with the other servants to make it happen.


American Street

Ibi Zoboi
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Zoboi)

When Fabiola's mother is detained upon their arrival to the United States, Fabiola must navigate her loud American cousins, the grittiness of Detroit's west side, a new school, and a surprising romance all on her own.


The Assassination of Brangwain Spurge

M.T. Anderson
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Anderso)

Uptight elfin historian Brangwain Spurge is on a mission: survive being catapulted across the mountains into goblin territory, deliver a priceless peace offering to their mysterious dark lord, and spy on the goblin kingdom -- from which no elf has returned alive in more than a hundred years.


Beyond a Darkened Shore

Jessica Leake
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Leake)

Princess Ciara of Mide, who has the ability to control others' minds and actions, has been using her powers to protect her people from the plundering Northmen, but when she captures Lief, a young Northman leader, she learns she is not the only one to harness this power.


Darius the Great is Not Okay

Abid Khorram
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Khorram)

Clinically-depressed Darius Kellner, a high school sophomore, travels to Iran to meet his grandparents, but it is their next-door neighbor, Sohrab, who changes his life.


Daughter of the Burning City

Amanda Foody
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Foody)

Sixteen-year-old Sorina has spent most of her life within the smoldering borders of the Gomorrah Festival. Yet even among the many unusual members of the traveling circus-city, Sorina stands apart as the only illusion-worker born in hundreds of years. Her creations are her family, and together they make up the cast of the Festival's Freak Show. But no matter how lifelike they may seem, her illusions are still just that—illusions, and not truly real. Or so she always believed…


The Female of the Species

Mindy McGinnis
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Mcginni)

Alex Craft knows how to kill someone. And she doesn't feel bad about it. When her older sister, Anna, was murdered three years ago and the killer walked free, Alex uncaged the language she knows best. The language of violence.


Highly Illogical Behavior

John Corey Whaley
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Whaley)

Agoraphobic sixteen-year-old Solomon has not left his house in three years, but Lisa is determined to change that--and to write a scholarship-winning essay based on the results.


I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter

Erika Sanchez
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Sanchez)

Perfect Mexican daughters do not go away to college. And they do not move out of their parents' house after high school graduation. Perfect Mexican daughters never abandon their family. But Julia is not your perfect Mexican daughter. That was Olga's role, a tragic accident on the busiest street in Chicago leaves Olga dead and Julia left behind to reassemble the shattered pieces of her family. And no one seems to acknowledge that Julia is broken, too. Instead, her mother seems to channel her grief into pointing out every possible way Julia has failed.


I, Claudia

Mary McCoy
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Mccoy)

Claudia McCarthy never expected to be in charge of Imperial Day Academy, but is pulled into the tumultuous and high-profile world of the Senate and Honor Council. Suddenly, Claudia is wielding power over her fellow students that she never expected to have... and isn't sure she wants.


In Other Lands

Sarah Rees Brennan
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Brennan)

Elliot is thirteen years old. He's smart and just a tiny bit obnoxious. When his class goes on a field trip and he can see a wall that no one else can see, he is given the chance to go to school in the Borderlands. It turns out that on the other side of the wall, classes involve a lot more weaponry and fitness training and fewer mermaids than he expected. On the other hand, there's Serene-Heart-in-the-Chaos-of-Battle, an elven warrior who is more beautiful than anyone Elliot has ever seen, and then there's her human friend Luke: sunny, blond, and annoyingly likeable. There are lots of interesting books. There's even the chance Elliot might be able to change the world.


The Loneliest Girl in the Universe

Lauren James
(Young Adult Fiction - Y James)

The daughter of two astronauts, Romy Silvers is no stranger to life in space. But she never knew how isolating the universe could be until her parents' tragic deaths left her alone on The Infinity, a spaceship speeding away from Earth. Romy tries to make the best of her lonely situation, but with only brief messages from her therapist on Earth to keep her company, she can't help but feel like something is missing. 


Longbow Girl

Linda Davies
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Davies)

A stunningly exciting and dramatic story set in the wilds of the Welsh mountains, where the brave Merry Owen, the Longbow Girl, travels back in time to the autocratic kingdom of King Henry VIII to save her ancestors.


Neanderthal Opens the Door to the Universe

Preston Norton
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Norton)

Cliff 'Neanderthal' Hubbard has nobody at school, and life in his trailer-park home has gone from bad to worse ever since his older brother's suicide. Then quarterback Aaron Zimmerman returns to school after a near-death experience with a bizarre claim: while he was unconscious he saw God, who gave him a list of things to do to make Happy Valley High suck less. And God said there's only one person who can help: Neanderthal.


On the Come Up

Angie Thomas
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Thomas)

When sixteen-year-old Bri, an aspiring rapper, pours her anger and frustration into her first song, she finds herself at the center of a controversy.


Rayne and Delilah's Midnite Matinee

Jeff Zentner
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Zentner)

Every Friday night, best friends Delia and Josie become Rayne Ravenscroft and Delilah Darkwood, hosts of the campy creature feature show Midnite Matinee on the local cable station TV Six. But with the end of senior year quickly approaching, the girls face tough decisions about their futures.


Spellbook of the Lost and Found

Moïra Fowley-Doyle
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Fowleyd)

One stormy Irish summer night, Olive and her best friend, Rose, begin to lose things. It starts with simple items like hair clips and jewelry, but soon it's clear that Rose has lost something much bigger, something she won't talk about, and Olive thinks her best friend is slipping away. Then seductive diary pages written by a girl named Laurel begin to appear all over town, and Olive meets three mysterious strangers secretly squatting in an abandoned  estate. The trio are wild and alluring, but they seem lost too--and like Rose, they're holding tight to painful secrets. 


The Stars Beneath Our Feet

David Barclay Moore
(Juvenile Fiction - J Moore)

t’s Christmas Eve in Harlem, but twelve-year-old Lolly Rachpaul and his mom aren’t celebrating. They’re still reeling from his older brother’s death in a gang related shooting just a few months earlier. Then Lolly’s mother’s girlfriend brings him a gift that will change everything: two enormous bags filled with Legos. Lolly’s always loved Legos, and he prides himself on following the kit instructions exactly. Now, faced with a pile of building blocks and no instructions, Lolly must find his own way forward.


To Kill a Kingdom

Alexandra Christo
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Christo)

Princess Lira is siren royalty and the most lethal of them all. Hearts are power, and with the hearts of seventeen princes in her collection, she is revered across the sea. When a twist of fate forces her to kill one of her own, the Sea Queen transforms Lira into a human as punishment. Robbed of her song, Lira has until the winter solstice to deliver Prince Elian's heart to the Sea Queen or remain a human forever.


The Truth as Told by Mason Buttle

Leslie Connor
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Connor)

As he grieves his best friend Benny's death, Mason and his friend Calvin, who are targeted by the neighborhood bullies, create an underground haven for themselves, but when Calvin goes missing Mason finds himself in trouble.


The Upside of Unrequited

Becky Albertalli
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Albertalli)

Avoiding relationships to protect her sensitive heart, plus-sized Molly supports her once-cynical twin, Cassie, when the latter has her own bout of lovesickness, a situation that is complicated by sibling dynamics and an unexpected romantic triangle.


Warrior of the Wild

Tricia Levenseller
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Levense)

How do you kill a god? As her father's chosen heir, Rasmira has trained her whole life to become a warrior and lead her village. But when her coming-of-age trial is sabotaged and she fails the test, her father banishes her to the monster-filled wilderness. To win back her honor, Rasmira must fulfill an impossible quest: kill the oppressive god who claims tribute from the villages each year... or die trying.


Watch Us Rise

Renee Watson
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Watson)

Jasmine and Chelsea are best friends on a mission--they're sick of the way women are treated even at their progressive NYC high school, so they decide to start a Women's Rights Club. They post their work online--poems, essays, videos of Chelsea performing her poetry, and Jasmine's response to the racial microaggressions she experiences--and soon they go viral. When things escalate in real life, the principal shuts the club down. Jasmine and Chelsea will risk everything for their voices--and those of other young women--to be heard.


What Girls are Made of

Elana K. Arnold
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Arnold)

When Nina Faye was fourteen, her mother told her there was no such thing as unconditional love. Nina believed her. Now she'll do anything for the boy she loves, to prove she's worthy of him. But when he breaks up with her, Nina is lost. What is she if not a girlfriend? What is she made of? Broken-hearted, Nina tries to figure out what the conditions of love are.


You Bring the Distant Near

Mitali Perkins
(Young Adult Fiction - Y Perkins)

Ranee worries that her children are losing their Indian culture. Sonia is wrapped up in a forbidden biracial love affair Tara seeks the limelight to hide her true self. Shanti desperately tries to make peace in the family. Anna fights to preserve Bengal tigers and her Bengali identity. As each Das woman decides which Bengali traditions to uphold in America, one hard truth remains: some scars take generations to heal.