> Skip to content

Article  •  6 April 2020

 

Choice YA ebook reads!

Looking for your next YA read? The Penguin team is proud to bring you some of our faves, all available as ebooks. And remember, YA isn’t just for teens!

A Trio of Sophies by Eileen Merriman 

Eileen’s books range from the heartbreakingly moving (Catch Me When You Fall) to the twisty and thrilling (Trio of Sophies). Nobody else captures the Kiwi teen experience quite like her. Once you pick up one, you’ll be a fan for life! You could start anywhere but my personal suggestion would be A Trio of Sophies, a completely unputdownable story about secrets, lies and lust. Start reading!

And if you liked that try: The One Memory of Flora Banks

 

Pretty Funny by Rebecca Elliott

If you feel like something a bit more light-hearted (and we could all do with a laugh right now) you should meet Haylah Swinton: ace best friend, loving daughter and aspiring stand-up comedian. Haylah is pretty sure she’s funny. Like, properly funny. But she’s also convinced that girls like her (big girls, girls who don’t get the boy) don’t belong on stage. Will she ever find the courage to step into the spotlight?

And if you liked that try: Dumplin

 

Hello Strange by Pamela Morrow

From local debut author, Pamela Morrow, comes this black mirror-esque tale of a not-too-distant future in which artificial emotional intelligence is a reality. Since the death of their mother, Hunter, Milly and Coel have unravelled. When their father brings home a prototype humanoid, Josie, it starts to look like she might be able to restore the family’s happiness. But unbeknownst to the family, she took a blast during an epic electrical storm and her system is unstable. . . Start reading!

And if you liked that try: Eve of Man

 

One of Us is Lying by Karen M McManus

The bestselling queen of the teen thriller, Karen M McManus rules at delivering twists, turns and compelling characters. I’d suggest starting with One of Us Is Lying; a delicious high school murder mystery with overtones of The Breakfast Club. It’s an absolute page turner, and lucky for you, you don’t have to wait to read the sequel One of Us is Next, because it’s already out!

And if you liked that try: Two Can Keep a Secret

 

Anna K by Jenny Lee

Pitched as a mash up of Gossip Girl and Crazy Rich Asians, this modern retelling of Anna Karenina reimagines Imperial Russia as the Upper East Side, and the Russian gentlemen and socialites become wealthy, privately educated teenagers. Privilege, partying and scandal are some of the best ingredients for an escapist read and this book has it all!

And if you liked that try: All These Beautiful Strangers

 

Spin the Dawn by Elizabeth Lim

Maybe you missed this rich fantasy novel inspired by the world of ancient china. It gives major Mulan vibes (with the main character disguising herself as a boy to become the Emperor’s personal tailor) and also features goddesses, bandits, demons and forbidden romance. Enchanting, magical and impossible not to get lost in.

And if you liked that try: The Queen's Assassin by Melissa de la Cruz

 

 

More features

See all
Article
The Unsolved Mysteries that Inspired House of Hollow

Author Krystal Sutherland shares her favourite stories.

Article
Michelle Obama: note to self

The First Lady of the United States pens a letter to her younger self.

Article
Locked Down: Real Reader Reviews

We wanted to know what young Kiwi readers thought about Jesse O's book Locked Down (hint: they loved it!). Read on to see their reviews.

Article
Locked Down: A note from the author

When Jesse O wrote Locked Down (then titled Staying Home) back in 2011, she never imagined that almost a decade later, the events of her novel would prove spookily accurate . . .

Article
The road trip that inspired Showtym Adventures 8!

Syd, the Muster Pony tells the story of the Wilson sisters' most epic adventure yet, and it's inspired by a real-life road trip Kelly and her sisters took in 2001! (warning: this article might induce a desperate longing to go adventuring around the country, read on at your own risk)

Article
Suzi McAlpine on the inspiration behind Beyond Burnout

Find out the inspiration behind Beyond Burnout, as well as what you'll learn from reading it!

Article
YA fiction we can't wait to read in 2021!

From contemporary rom-coms, to literary debuts, to the creepiest modern gothic fairytale you could imagine (seriously . . . it is AWESOME!), we've got some stellar YA lined up for you this year. Read on for recommendations for your TBR pile!

Article
This will be hard

In How to Avoid a Climate Disaster, Bill Gates outlines just some of the hurdles between humanity and a net-zero carbon world.

Article
Beyond Hairy Maclary

Hairy Maclary and his friends are known and loved all over the world. But how familiar are you with Dame Lynley Dodd's other creations? There are plenty to discover, and just like Hairy Maclary, they all feature Lynely's uniquely exuberant artwork and gorgeously readable rhymes! Here are some suggestions to get you started.

Article
A sneak peek at our 2021 kids books!

After an exhausting and unusual 2020, we’ve got plenty of reasons to be grateful for a new year, not least because of the stellar line up of children’s books we have coming your way over the next few months!Read on for a sneak peek at some of the best new children’s books we’re bringing to you in 2021.

Article
Beautiful NZ Picture Books from 2020

Sometimes a story is best told alongside a beautiful picture, Here's a small selection of some of our favourite 2020 picture books from local creators. 

Article
Sophie Gray's top tips for a cracker Christmas

If you’re planning to head to the shops for a last-minute Christmas here's what destitute gourmet wants you to think about! 

Looking for more articles?

See all articles