Stories about performing arts draw readers in with their empowering and exciting depictions of the creative world. If you want a book with a main character with big dreams or big problems, a book in this sub-genre could be the perfect fit. There are so many new and upcoming books about the fields of music, acting, dancing, and more! So sit back, relax, and enjoy the show because we've collected 14 of the brightest stars on the debut author stage!
THE TURNING POINTE by Vanessa L. Torres 2/22/2022, Knopf BYFR
In 1980s Minnesota, Rosa, a teenage Latinx girl, is a straight-laced and stalwart ballerina at her studio. Being a ballerina should make her happy, but what she really wants to dance freely to--or even alongside--Prince. When upcoming auditions for Prince's concert are announced, Rosa won't stop until she can prove herself outside the ballet studio.
TURNING by Joy L Smith 3/1/2022, Simon & Schuster/Denene Millner Books
Genie is a former aspiring ballerina who recently suffered a devastating fall that left her without the use of her legs. Being forced to give up her dream causes her to isolate herself. But when she meets Kyle, a former gymnast, at physical therapy, she begins to come out of her shell, but not before she has to reassess and confront the secrets and struggles of her past.
FORWARD MARCH by Skye Quinlan 3/22/2022, Page Street Kids
Harper's just hoping to push through her last year of marching band and her Republican father's presidential campaign. Life is tricky enough for a bank geek, but gets trickier when someone sets up a fake dating profile impersonating Harper and the intriguing drum-line leader Margot turns out to be the one who swiped right. The profile is a threat to her dad's campaign, Margot must choose between being her true self or fitting the mold set out for her as a potential First Daughter.
THE CIRCUS INFINITE by Khan Wong 3/8/2022, Angry Robot Books
Jes is a mixed-species fugitive freshly arrived at the pleasure moon, a glittering party scene with some dark secrets hiding below its surface. Jes is roped into working for a crime boss at the resort casino's circus. He and his friends must bring down the mobster before they're forced to take the fall for an illegal narcotics operation.
SPEECH AND DEBACLES by Heather DiAngelis 5/31/2022, Totally Entwined Group/Finch
When her drama teacher recruits her for the Speech and Debate team, Taryn can't believe it. She's part of a powerhouse team, and--even better--the group also includes the eye-catching superstar debater Riker, who hopefully got the hint that she likes boys and girls. Soon, though, Taryn starts experiencing painful pelvic cramps that threaten to sabotage her chances at debate and at getting closer to Riker.
THE GRAVITY OF MISSING THINGS by Marisa Urgo 6/7/2022, with Entangled Teen
Violet's mother, a pilot, has disappeared over the ocean along with her entire flight. If this wasn't distressing enough, Violet quickly has to survive the gossip and conspiracies surrounding her mother's death and her inability to trust those close to her while trying to understand and overcome her grief.
THE CIVIL WAR OF AMOS ABERNATHY by Michael Leali 6/7/2022, HarperCollins
Amos Abernathy loves history and volunteering at the Living History Park. When a cute new volunteer arrives, he wonders why he hasn't seen anyone like the two of them in history. He's desperate to learn about LGBTQ+ people in 19th-century Illinois and discovers a Civil War soldier who might have identified as a trans man if he'd lived today. Amos wants his town to recognize this overlooked story, but doing so might be an uphill battle.
HOW TO FAKE IT IN HOLLYWOOD by Ava Wilder 6/14/2022, Bantam Dell/PRH
Grey is a struggling actress desperate enough to agree to a PR relationship with Ethan, a grieving actor with a worsening reputation. Their fake relationship stirs up attention and gossip, but the manufactured chemistry soon becomes real. Can Grey and Ethan let their real feelings shine even when they're stuck faking them?
GOTH GIRL, QUEEN OF THE UNIVERSE by Lindsay S. Zrull 7/19/2022, Flux/North Star
Jessica doesn't plant roots--not after being bounced between foster homes since age seven. The only person at her high school who doesn't think she's a witch is geeky Oscar, who uses her unique fashion skills for his cosplay group. She's fine sharing some looks on social media until a woman claiming to be her biological mother reaches out. While their relationship is far from traditional, blood ties are hard to break. So she schemes to join Oscar's group's trip to NYC in the hopes of reuniting with her biological mother, even if that reunion could sabotage the bonds she's already made with others.
BOYS I KNOW by Anna Gracia 7/26/2022, Peachtree Publishing/Peachtree Teen
June Chu, a high school senior, never seems good enough for her Taiwanese mother's high expectations. June figures she's also not good enough to follow her older sister to Northwestern, so she focuses on getting closer to her not-quite-official boyfriend, Rhys. When her relationship with Rhys implodes, she dives into a new relationship as the lines between sex and love blur and her future looms closer and closer on the horizon.
IN MY HANDS by Sathya Achia 8/8/2022, Ravens & Roses Publishing
After the death of her mother, 16-yo Chandra S. Chengappa leaves small-town Virginia for the jungles of India to find the weapon of a Hindu Goddess to destroy the demon hell-bent on obliterating her ancestral home.
HOW TO SUCCEED IN WITCHCRAFT by Aislinn Brophy 9/27/2022, Putnam/PRH
Shay's close to a perfect witch--academically skilled, magically brilliant, and, unfortunately, totally overcommitted. Still, she's determined to win a scholarship that could be the ticket to the university of her dreams. To do that, she must beat her competition and impress her drama teacher. But as she rehearses for the musical she's been asked to star in, she realizes her competition--Ava--might not be so bad and that her drama teacher is behaving increasingly inappropriately. She wants to speak out, but worries she'll give up her future if she does.
THE SECOND DEATH OF EDIE AND VIOLET BOND by Amanda Glaze 10/4/2022, Union Square Kids
In 1885, Edie and Violet are 17-year-old twins and powerful mediums. They join a travelling Spiritualist show, a tight-knit group of young women who use real talents--music, oration, acting, and more--under the guise of communing with spirits. But when Violet’s act goes wrong, Edie realizes that the dark spirit responsible for their mother’s death has crossed into the land of the living.
OTHER SIDE OF THE TRACKS by Charity Alyse 11/22/2022
Denene Millner Books/S&S
In the racially divided towns of Bayside and Hamilton, people live by a simple rule: don't cross the train tracks dividing them. But when Zach Whitman, a white boy who's new in town, crosses the tracks to meet a jazz musician, he idolizes, he's thrown into the life of Capri Collins, a girl who dreams of being a Broadway dancer and her brother Justin Collins. When Black blood is spilled on the white side of the town, both erupt into an all out war zone with Zach, Capri, and Justin caught in the middle
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