Revenant – A new, old ghost story by Sonia Gensler woven with history, romance

Okay, here’s a shout out to a fellow OKC YA novelist. Sonia Gensler’s Revenant is definitely worth a read! I’d say adolescent and teen girls (or any history buff) will get the most out of this book. The story has a nice mix of supernatural elements, American history, and romance. It’s not the scariest ghost story I’ve ever read, but it will definitely have the reader on edge. The romance is woven throughout the story, and it’s not as racy or vulgar as some of the stuff you’ll read in YA novels these days. I wasn’t quite sure what “Revenant” meant without looking it up, and I’m a little concerned some teens won’t be sucked in by the title or the cover (which doesn’t quite do the book justice), but this novel is certainly worth recommending. My husband is Cherokee Indian (which means my kids are too), so this book also held some interest for me in that department.

I think the book’s promotional trailer is catchy too. You can check the video, the book, and the author out on and let me know what you think!


Industry news – The YA genre flourishes!

Check out this article on Publisher’s Weekly and tell me why you think teen fiction is doing so well these days! My theory? It appeals to more than just the adolescent crowd! There’s something about coming of age and being young and reckless that appeals to us all…

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Unusual Children invites you on a journey that stretches the imagination – and oh the pictures!

I was a little worried at the beginning of this book–scary images is one of the reasons I enjoy reading scary books over watching scary movies. Pictures stick with me. But some disturbing (or maybe not so disturbing if you’re not as easily frightened as I am) images aside, this story does fascinate, even as it asks you to expand your scope of the fantastical several times throughout the narrative. One of my pet peeves are novels that have to explain too much to make their plots work out, but I think this book manages this aspect just fine. The details are woven in incrementally. I know this doesn’t really explain to you what the story is about, so here’s a few words to wet your appetite–paranormal children, time travel, WWII, murder, romance, and spectacular imagery. To learn more, check out, and once you’ve given this book a read, let me know your thoughts!

My Worst Best Friend – Dyan Sheldon’s story is in the dialogue

You may have heard of the book Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen, on which a Hollywood film is based. But author Dyan Sheldon’s repetoire goes far beyond that successful YA novel (check her out at Recently, I just finished My Worst Best Friend. I have to say, the story is in the dialogue , which may be Sheldon’s specialty. She definitely “gets” what drives teenage girls and the fact that not all of them are only boy-crazy (most, but not all).

This is fun. It’s nothing too deep (and it’s not supposed to be, I think), but the dialogue is snappy. Also, the heroine’s love interest is unique compared with most of the hearthrobs that pervade teen fiction. I found myself getting a little aggravated with the heroine at times, but I think maybe this is because I saw a little of myself in her. And that made the ending all the more satisfying.

What say you, Sheldon fans?

Welcome to the Best YA Novels Blog!

Welcome to the Best YA Novels Blog, where readers, writers, and critics of the teen fiction genre can kabitz about their favorite book or series, the latest YA trends, author news, and films based on YA novels. Yes, I’ve passed my thirtieth birthday, but I love this genre, mostly because I write it  (check out for news about my trilogy, The Teen Mobster Series). There’s nothing like reliving the teen years in new and different ways. So here’s to stories of  first love, first heartbreaks, and figuring out that the world isn’t as simple as we believed. I invite you to post your favorite books or share your thoughts on YA fiction.

Note: I am not a critic, and these are not book reviews. I am simply listing novels that I have enjoyed for various reasons.