Young Adult Fantasy Novelist
Travels from: Chicago, IL

“Joy’s writing is exemplary; a strong plot, even pacing, and character growth (not only Eva’s) all lead up to an ending that should satisfy even the pickiest readers . . . A strong and satisfying conclusion.” —Kirkus Reviews, starred review

Amanda Joy grew up in a family of readers. Her father first gifted her a set of the Chronicles of Narnia and sparked her unending love of fantasy and children’s literature. Years later, her older brother gave her the Wheel of Time series, which went on to inspire Amanda to create her own worlds. She knew from an early age that she wanted to be a writer and spent most of high school staying up all night reading and writing. She studied English and Psychology at the University of Missouri, and went on to earn an MFA in Writing for Children at the New School. While at the New School, she began writing about a princess who felt out of place in her family and was quite literally under siege in her home. That became Amanda’s first novel, A River of Royal Blood, which went on to earn the distinction of Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection.

You can find Amanda touring the city’s coffeeshops, taking pictures of her ever expanding library, and trekking around Chicago with her dog, Luna.

Amanda's Featured Titles

A Queen of Gilded Horns

G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers |
Young Adult/Fantasy

In this sequel to A River of Royal Blood, Eva and Isa must find a way to work together if they want to save their queendom in the thrilling conclusion to this royal fantasy duology.

Now on the run, Eva is desperate for answers about her transformation and her true heritage. Along with Aketo, a small contingent of guards, and the sister she could not kill, Eva flees Ternain in hopes of finding friends and allies to the north–not to mention Baccha–to help her decide what to do next. Princess Isa is a difficult, unremorseful captive, and Eva knows better than to trust her sister, but she wants to. Despite their history, Eva is convinced that to survive the growing unrest in the queendom, she and her sister must make peace. Since the Entwining ceremony, Eva’s and Isa’s lives have been bonded, and each can only die by the other’s hand. This perhaps provides an opening for a truce and a more hopeful future for both the sisters and the queendom, if only Isa would see reason and give up the battle for the throne.

With the two princesses on the run, the Queendom of Myre is on the brink of a revolution. And without Baccha to guide and train her magick, Eva must find a way not only to survive her own metamorphosis, but to unite all the people of Myre, including her sister, by finally taking the Ivory Throne.

A River of Royal Blood

G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers |
Young Adult/Fantasy

An enthralling debut perfect for fans of Children of Blood and Bone set in an ancient North African-inspired fantasy world where two sisters must fight to the death to win the crown.

Sixteen-year-old Eva is a princess, born with the magick of blood and marrow–a dark and terrible magick that hasn’t been seen for generations in the vibrant but fractured country of Myre. Its last known practitioner was Queen Raina, who toppled the native khimaer royalty and massacred thousands, including her own sister, eight generations ago, thus beginning the Rival Heir tradition. Living in Raina’s long and dark shadow, Eva must now face her older sister, Isa, in a battle to the death if she hopes to ascend to the Ivory Throne–because in the Queendom of Myre only the strongest, most ruthless rulers survive.

When Eva is attacked by an assassin just weeks before the battle with her sister, she discovers there is more to the attempt on her life than meets the eye–and it isn’t just her sister who wants to see her dead. As tensions escalate, Eva is forced to turn to a fey instructor of mythic proportions and a mysterious and handsome khimaer prince for help in growing her magick into something to fear. Because despite the love she still has for her sister, Eva will have to choose: Isa’s death or her own.

A River of Royal Blood is an enthralling debut set in a lush, ancient North African inspired fantasy world that subtly but powerfully challenges our notions of power, history, and identity.


Build a World Workshop

Amanda walks students through the world building proces for A River of Royal Blood and collaborates with them to create a brand new world from scratch. Emphasis is placed on finding an aspect of the world students want to change.


Heroes vs. Villains Plot Workshop

Amanda will lead a discussion with students on protagonists and antagonists; following that, the class will be divided into two teams (hero and villain) and Amanda will coach the team through the creation of dueling plot diagrams.


Writer Revolutionaries: Fantasy as a Vehicle for Change

Amanda examines the recurring theme of revolution in young adult fantasy, discussing ways authors use world building to deconstruct current society and support social justice movements, as well as the impact of today’s inclusive offerings on young readers.


Amanda’s Upcoming Events

Honors, Awards & Recognition

Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection

Media Kit

By clicking the link below you will be directed to a Google Docs Folder
where you can download author photos and cover images.

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