Young adult

Two Sides to Every Murder by Danielle Valentine

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

An abandoned summer camp called Camp Lost Lake is the setting for this spooky murder mystery. The teen camp was abandoned because 15 years prior to when this story begins there were three murders there, supposedly committed by a woman…

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Maria Petranelli is Prepared for Anything (Except This) by Elisa Chenoweth

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

This year’s winner of the Ampersand Prize for unpublished manuscripts is a contemporary coming-of-age novel that focuses on family and discovering your own identity.

Maria is a deadpan misanthrope who has been stifled by her big, outspoken Italian-Australian family. When…

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Return to Sender by Lauren Draper

Reviewed by Alexa Dretzke

I was an admirer of Lauren Draper’s first YA novel, The Museum of Broken Things, and my admiration continues with this, her second novel. At a time when a lot of YA seems to be dominated by fantasy and…

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Lover Birds by Leanne Egan

Reviewed by Lucie Dess

Lou Byrne has always been told she’s insufferable, a little too much. She’s worn it as a badge of honour, but then Isabel Williams moves to Liverpool from London and criticises everything about Lou: her city, her accent, the fact…

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Liar’s Test by Ambelin Kwaymullina

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

The new novel by Ambelin Kwaymullina, the First Nations author of The Tribe trilogy and Catching Teller Crow, is an intricately plotted fantasy that features a gutsy, clever heroine who is an excellent liar.

Bell has been imprisoned in…

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Now, Conjurers by Freddie Kölsch

Reviewed by Lucie Dess

It’s 1999. In North Dana, Massachusetts, the partially eaten body of Nesbit Nuñez’s secret boyfriend, Bastion Attia, is found. Bastion was the heart of the North Coven, a band of witches including Dove, Drea, Brandy and, of course, Nesbit. The…

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What’s Murder Between Friends by Meg Gatland-Veness

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

Set in a town so small it doesn’t even have a police station, this murder mystery is narrated by self-confessed drama nerd Hallie, with the main characters (and suspects) her close-knit Year 12 drama class all five of them…

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One By One They Disappear by Mike Lucas

Reviewed by Alicia Guiney

A haunting novel about the life of a young Jewish girl during the Second World War, One By One They Disappear carefully blends the historical with the supernatural to create a compelling read.

The book follows Hannah, a young Jewish…

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I’ll Be Waiting for You by Mariko Turk

Reviewed by Lucie Dess

Natalie and Imogen are best friends who couldn’t be more different. Natalie is brave and always on the hunt for a new adventure. Imogen is gifted and constantly under pressure from her parents to succeed. Every summer, the girls and…

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Into the Mouth of the Wolf by Erin Gough

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

Amelia Westlake was a stand-out title when it was published in 2018, winning The Readings Young Adult Prize. It’s been a long wait for Erin Gough’s next novel, but the delay has been worth it. Into the Mouth of

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