The Darkangel, by Meredith Ann Pierce
I'm on a bit of a nostalgic trip at the moment, and bought myself used copies of books I read as a young girl and loved. One of these is The Darkangel, which I discovered by accident because I thought it was by my favorite author, Tamora Pierce. The two series are, in fact, similar, what with the young, female protagonists and fantastical lands of magic. But The Darkangel is altogether more mystical and lyrical. There is poetry in Pierce's words, not just a story, and the imagination is captivated by her unique take on young adult fantasy. The next two books in the trilogy are even more ethereal, while such writing does nothing to dampen the importance and excitement of the plot. This is truly a gorgeous example of how young adult fantasy is just as much literature as "adult" fiction is.