The Badass Book Trilogy Bible: Part 2

I blogged last week about some of the best trilogies that I’ve finished in the past year or so. If that list hadn’t been longer than I expected, I would’ve kept all of the awesome contained in the original post. 😉 Instead, I’ll be giving you part two of the “bible” separately, so that I have the space to give each series and author the credit they’re due.

In no particular order, here are three more YA trilogies that you should definitely read now that all three books have been released.

1. The Something Strange and Deadly Trilogy: Something Strange and Deadly, A Darkness Strange and Lovely, and Strange and Ever After by Susan Dennard.

Zombies, steampunk, and the Philadelphia world’s fair? All described through a late 19th century lens? Yes, please. Our heroine Eleanor Fitt is a girl who loves Shakespeare and hates dodging her mother’s attempts at marrying her off. In the first book, Eleanor tries to rescue her brother Elijah with the help of The Spirit Hunters–a ragtag team of misfits who believe that the dead rising in Philadelphia and Elijah’s disappearance are tied to the same evil necromancer. In the last book, Eleanor and the Spirit Hunters square off against said necromancer once and for all, risking life and limb to lay the dead and a few personal demons to rest.

Strange and Ever After doesn’t just force Eleanor to confront some of her worst fears. She has to face and overcome the worst parts of herself too, in order to come out on top. I really admire Susan Dennard’s ability to pull no punches with her characters, even though I still haven’t recovered from the latest casualties. 😉

Read for: Lush, period locales, a feisty yet unlikely heroine, a simmering romance troubled by societal norms AND zombies, and lots of kickass team-on-a-mission fight scenes.

2. The NewSoul Trilogy: Incarnate, Asunder, and Infinite by Jodi Meadows.

Another fantasy series with gorgeous covers to cover the gorgeous writing. Ana is born into a society where every soul reincarnates over hundreds of lifetimes–except for hers. In the first book, Ana travels to the city of Heart to try and unravel the mystery surrounding her existence. There, she makes new friends, faces new violence from people who fear that her newsoul brings dark omens, and uncovers dangerous new secrets. In the final book, Ana and her friends must try to solve the puzzle of reincarnation and prevent the ascension of a god-like being who plans to use reincarnation as a way to cement his return to power.

Infinite is just as intelligent as it is entertaining, and the questions it asks about why some lives are prioritized above others resonated so much with me, especially given the US political climate during the time I was reading it. Ana’s desire for acceptance is much more universal, however, and Jodi Meadows does an excellent job of capturing Ana’s shifts in self-worth in a way that’s clear and easy to relate to.

Read for: Sparse but beautiful prose, a fantasy world containing fresh new creatures and mythology, and most importantly, a love story that transcends time and experience. Also, Sam. Oh, Sam.

3. The Defiance Trilogy: Defiance, Deception, and Deliverance by CJ Redwine.

I expected Defiance, a post-apocalpytic YA set in an America that’s been ravaged by mythical beasts and warfare, to be dark. I didn’t expect it to be the kind of start to finish thrill ride that meant neglecting real life responsibilities until I reached the end. Rachel is one POV character, a girl whose father secretly trained her as a warrior in a society where women are forbidden to fight, or even leave the house alone. Logan is her father’s apprentice and an orphan, who is incredibly bright and technically minded, and also incredibly clueless about the depths of Rachel’s feelings for him. In the first book, Rachel and Logan accidentally incite a long-brewing war when they leave their city to search for Rachel’s missing father. In the final book, the two of them must reunite the shattered remains of their country and find their way back to each other–while fighting off various enemies seeking their destruction.

CJ Redwine writes broken, spiteful, tough, loyal characters better than almost anyone, which meant that I was in the awkward position of sympathizing with almost everyone by the end of Deliverance. Villains included. I loved that the remaining characters still felt human, even in the middle of all these big, climactic battles. Plus, the little glimpse at life after war was really appreciated.

Read for: Unexpected friendships/alliances, a forbidden (in more ways than one) love story, two compelling leads with very different strengths and weaknesses, brilliant strategizing, and the many contrasts between family you’re born with versus family you make.

 

Have you read any of these trilogies? What were your thoughts?

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