I have a lot of AVatar: THe Last Airbender feels.
If you’re like me, you spent winter break watching ATLA for the first time, crying, laughing, and having feels. Or, you’re a smart person and watched ATLA back when it aired and have never quite gotten over the Fire Nation sized hole it left in your heart.
Here we have a list of books to help with that. But let’s be real, nothing will ever truly help.
The Graphic Novels! I tore through The Lost Adventures and The Search already. It was magical! I felt like I was back with all the old characters. The Lost Adventures wasn’t really anything groundbreaking. It was mostly super short filler stories, but there were three I really loved. The one where Aang tries to find any surviving airbenders broke my heart. Zuko and Mai’s first date/kiss story was also super adorable and a surprise character makes a cameo in it. And then there’s a short story set in the Western Air Temple where Sokka starts his own non-bender exclusive club and Zuko, Katara, and Toph act like they’re above it, but Aang is desperate to get in.
The Search, though, finally answers the question “What happened to Zuko’s mom?” and wow I had feels. I loved how it analyzed Sokka/Katara and Zuko/Azula–the two prominent sibling relationships on the show, which are so different. There’s a lot of familial relationships throughout the story that really sets a good tone. Then there’s gems like Uncle Iroh being in charge of the Fire Nation while Zuko is away and declaring National Tea Day. And Zuko being a sweetheart with a little kid which may have made my Prince Zuko crush extra hard to get rid of.
Truthwitch by Susan Dennard! Susan is a mega ATLA fan, as discovered at the launch event for her book, and she used an elemental magic system to create her world. A Truthwitch happens to sound as rare as an Airbender, doesn’t it? And a Bloodwitch tracking them down? Hmm… is that one Prince Zuko? “Her unlikely friendship with Safi has taken her from life as an outcast into one of reckless adventure” <–“I’m just a boy with a boomerang. I didn’t ask for all this flying and magic.”
Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo! This magical heist-y book was blurbed by one of the ATLA creators! Team Avatar is now Kaz, Inej, Nina, Matthias, Jesper, and Wylan as they attempt to break into the
Fire Nation Ice Court. It’s a must read.
Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton! This doesn’t come out until February or March depending on where you live, but Alwyn is also an epic ATLA fan and this book…. ohmygosh this book. Remember that massive desert from season/book 2? Oh, yes. And it has lots of cool monikers for people like The Blue-Eyed Bandit, The Eastern Snake, The Rebel Prince a la The Blind Bandit, The Blue Spirit, The Banished Prince. Plus this book is full of epic female characters and diversity, just like ATLA was.
The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer! Hello! MOON PRINCESS.
A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab! The fantasy lover in you will eat up this book for the amazing world building. It is ATLA levels of good. I read this book just basically marveling at it. “How do I write something this good? How does anyone?” Also! Evil siblings like our fave Fire Nation duo. *rocks back and forth* *Zuko* *character growth*
There you have it! A list of books to reignite your ATLA feels! Have a wonderful feelsy day.