Book Recs: Sapphic YA Fantasy

The other day Charlotte made for you guys a rec list of adult fantasy books, and so here I am, trying to maintain my brand, reccing YA books.

Specifically, sapphic YA books. I don’t have a particular reasoning here, I’ve just read a bunch of them this year, so it seemed quite obvious. I want to say right away, though, that I didn’t include Crier’s War here, despite it being one of my favourite books. I just figured y’all know about it anyway, so there’s no point! But this is your reminder that it exists, and that Iron Heart comes out next month.

Okay, let’s go!

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The Midnight Lie

Marie Rutkoski
Goodreads
Rep: poc lesbian mc, lesbian li, wlw & mlm side characters
TW: physical and emotional abuse

Why Should I Read It?

If you guys know anything about it, it should be that I’m obsessed with this book. Yeah, it’s also already pretty popular, but I just physically couldn’t not include it! The way this book deals with compulsory heteronormativity, with having first sapphic crushes, with trauma & abuse! The way it allows its characters to be vibrant & feel things with no limits! Truly a gem when it comes to sapphic YA books.

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The Dark Tide

Alicia Jasińska
Goodreads
Rep: bi mc, poc sapphic mc, sapphic parents, side poc characters

Why Should I Read It?

If, like me, you find it ridiculous that sapphic girls are basically never allowed to be anything other than soft & gentle in books, you should read The Dark Tide. Here you will find a chaotic villain x hero pairing, you will find girls wanting to jump into fire for the other, to keep the other close enough to bruise while kissing. It’s a sapphic dream come true, not gonna lie.

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Shatter the Sky

Rebecca Kim Wells
Goodreads
Rep: poc cast, bi mc, sapphic li, side sapphic character, side wlw parents

Why Should I Read It?

Okay, first of all: dragons! A mother of dragons, in fact, and way better than the image that just popped into your head. Apart from that, this book feels a little bit like a gift. It literally opens with the bi girl talking about how much she loves her girlfriend. And pretty much nothing would happen at all here, if it wasn’t for that fierce love. It’s the driving force behind the plot and it’s absolutely beautiful. Also, LGBT relationships are basically normalised here.

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The Winter Duke

Claire Eliza Bartlett
Goodreads
Rep: lesbian mc, sapphic li, nonbinary side characters

Why Should I Read It?

Oh, so you like the arranged marriage trope? How about a duke marrying a girl her brother was (possibly) going to marry? How about that. And I’m not saying she decided to do it because she was overwhelmed with how butch said girl was but… Also, there are mermaid-like folks here and a pretty cool plot twists. But mostly, just read it for Ekaterina “I’d never sought to be a politician, a performer, or even nice” Avenko.

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Girl, Serpent, Thorn

Melissa Bashardoust
Goodreads
Rep: Persian cast & settings, bi mc, sapphic li

Why Should I Read It?

Was this one of the most beautifully written books I’ve read this year? Probably, yes. It’s lowkey a fairy tale, but not the way you might expect. The princess isn’t a damsel in distress, she’s a monster and it is she, who does most of the saving. “The evil witch” learns new tricks and gets a backstory. The prince? There’s no prince in this fairy tale; who needs him, when you have a group of women who love each other and would sacrifice everything for one another?

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The Never Tilting World

Rin Chupeco
Goodreads
Rep: poc cast, lesbian mc, sapphic mc with PTSD, amputee mc

Why Should I Read It?

The very short review of this I posted on gr literally just says: “MAKE LOVE NOT WAR, also climate change is real”. And I stand by that! The love between two girls (but also other kinds of love) saves the world. Teenagers save the broken world their parents brought them up in. And the girls get to be so unapologetically sapphic, you can barely believe you’re reading it!

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Beyond the Ruby Veil

Mara Fitzgerald
Goodreads
Rep: lesbian mc, sapphic relationship

Why Should I Read It?

Okay, this is a little bit of a cheat, since the book isn’t out yet, but. The author described the mc once as “a tiny chaos lesbian”, and I was immediately sold. And if you’ve read Forest of a Thousand Lanterns, you will appreciate that Julie C. Dao said that compared to the mc here, Xifeng (the vicious evil queen of my heart) seems like a “gently smiling kindergarten teacher who cries at dog commercials”. This is the kind of sapphic content we deserve!

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Ice Massacre

Tiana Warner
Goodreads
Rep: sapphic mc & li

Why Should I Read It?

Let’s do this AO3 tags style! Childhood friends to enemies? Check. Enemies back to friends? Check. Friends to lovers? Check! Pining? Check. Angst? Check. And on top of all that, this is a story about a mermaid and a mermaid hunter! Literally what more could you possibly need from a book!

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Otherbound

Corinne Duyvis
Goodreads
Rep: poc disabled bi mc, Spanish-Mexican disabled mc, poc sapphic side character

Why Should I Read It?

I was gonna do only high fantasy for this list (or as high as YA fantasy gets…), and this is only 50% that but hey. It’s my list. Basically the fantasy world coexists here with our regular world and the idea behind it is kind of like in Sense8. And the sapphic romance? Oh boy. A lady and her handmaiden? I know we’re all into that shit.

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A Curse of Roses

Diana Pinguicha
Goodreads
Rep: Portuguese sapphic mc & li

Why Should I Read It?

Yes, I’m ending the list with another upcoming 2020 release, what of it. The myth of of King Midas wishes it could be this cool and this gay. But the story is actually not based on that, but on a Portuguese legend, so it’s even better. And if, like me, you’re obsessed with the concept of a princess setting free a supernatural being with a kiss… You better preorder this book right this second.

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Is your favourite here? If not, what is it?

30 Replies to “Book Recs: Sapphic YA Fantasy”

  1. These cover are all gooooooorgeous. that was the first thing I noticed. but after looking through the goodreads of all of these books, they also look so good???!!! I haven’t read enough wlw stories so I’ve added like… all of these to my TBR. Out of these books, I’m the most excited to read A Curse of Roses, Beyond the Ruby Veil, Shatter the Sky (dragons LOL), and The Dark Tide! Which one is your favorite?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. my absolute favourites are the midnight lie, the dark tide & shatter the sky! but they were all really good! hope u will enjoy them! and hey, we have quite a few rec lists specifically for wlw stories :>>
      – anna

      Like

  2. Oh my gosh I have a copy of The Dark Tide and now after seeing your blurb I’m more excited!! Didn’t realize it was not going to be super soft (although… I should’ve known). Thanks for the list, this is GREAT!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I really appreciate this list! I can never get enough sapphic ya fantasy books! If I had to read just one genre that would be it ❤❤ This post has sold me on The Midnight Lie – I’m definitely going to have to read it now

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Look at that covers 😍 also The Dark Tide sounds like my cup of tea! Chaotic villain x hero pairing?? Sign me up!! My sapphic heart is so happy you made this list. Thank youuuu 💕💕

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m currently reading The Dark Tide and I’m halfway into it. I’m more and more annoyed by Lina (I hope this will improve soon), but Eva? I love her sass, I love her attitude, and I can’t wait to see how their romance evolve!
    Also, I have sooo many of these books on my TBR shelf and I can’t wait to dive into them!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. lina gets truly INTERESTING once she figures out what she wants from eva (i mean tbf i liked her from the start but i think she might grow on u thanks to that).
      they’re all amazing, im very excited for u to read them!!
      – anna

      Liked by 1 person

  6. omg I’m so overwhelmed with pure love for Dark Tide. omg „girls wanting to jump into fire for the other, to keep the other close enough to bruise while kissing”???? I need a moment to collect myself, it’s everything I’ve ever asked for

    amazing post (and gorgeous blog!) ❤

    Liked by 1 person

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