13 must-read June YA book releases to start your summer off right

Forest of Souls by Lori M. Lee. Image Courtesy Page Street Publishing
Forest of Souls by Lori M. Lee. Image Courtesy Page Street Publishing /
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The Empire of Gold – S.A. Chakraborty

The highly anticipated conclusion to author S.A. Chakraborty’s Daevabad trilogy arrives at the end of the month and, basically, none of us are ready. The Empire of Gold will wrap up the stories of Nadhi, Dara and Ali, while figuring out exactly what the future will look like for the magical Djinn city of Daevabad, currently torn apart by a deadly war between ruling factions.

At this point in the story, if you’re not caught up, read no further. The Empire of Gold will pick up immediately after the ending of the previous book The Kingdom of Copper. Banu Manizheh is alive, Nahri and Ali have fled the city of Daevabad and are on the run, and Dara is torn between his loyalty to the mission he has always believed in and the woman he betrayed to support it.

The world-building of Chakraborty’s trilogy remains impressively rich, depicting complex religious systems, competing religious alliances, and the history of magical creatures with equal ease. In this final installment, Ali will discover more about his connections to the strange sea-people known as marids, and we’ll learn more about Dara’s dark past.

The official synopsis describes the story in sweeping and dramatic terms.

"Daevabad has fallen. After a brutal conquest stripped the city of its magic, Nahid leader Banu Manizheh and her resurrected commander, Dara, must try to repair their fraying alliance and stabilize a fractious, warring people. But the bloodletting and loss of his beloved Nahri have unleashed the worst demons of Dara’s dark past. To vanquish them, he must face some ugly truths about his history and put himself at the mercy of those he once considered enemies. Having narrowly escaped their murderous families and Daevabad’s deadly politics, Nahri and Ali, now safe in Cairo, face difficult choices of their own. While Nahri finds peace in the old rhythms and familiar comforts of her human home, she is haunted by the knowledge that the loved ones she left behind and the people who considered her a savior are at the mercy of a new tyrant. Ali, too, cannot help but look back, and is determined to return to rescue his city and the family that remains. Seeking support in his mother’s homeland, he discovers that his connection to the marid goes far deeper than expected and threatens not only his relationship with Nahri, but his very faith. As peace grows more elusive and old players return, Nahri, Ali, and Dara come to understand that in order to remake the world, they may need to fight those they once loved . . . and take a stand for those they once hurt."

The Empire of Gold is available on June 30.

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What are you planning on adding to your TBR pile this June? Let us know in the comments!