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How We Became Wicked

(for younger readers, and older ones) 


A viral disease called the Wickedness plagues the world, and sixteen-year-olds Astrid and Natalie are two of the only people immune. The girls live in separate, isolated communities, but recent encounters with wicked people link their stories in unexpected ways.


"[S]tunning, gut-punching... " -- BCCB, starred review

"A first-class sci-fi/horror story." -- School Library Journal

"A creative and philosophical take on a zombie-esque apocalypse with a perfectly executed final act twist. Promptly hand this one to lovers of smart, tense science fiction." -- Booklist, starred review

"Alexander Yates is such a talented, smart, and compelling writer.  He is a true storyteller, who builds an entirely new world, and makes you care deeply about its characters and recognize yourself in them.  The effect is magical – a deep transport – and causes you to return to our world with renewed interest and clarity."  -- George Saunders, winner of the Man Booker Prize for Lincoln in the Bardo


The Winter Place

(for younger readers) 

(also for older readers who won't be dissuaded by ghost-bears)


There is a middle world between life and death, and Tess must navigate it to save her brother in this heart-wrenching story infused with the fractured and fantastical realms of Finnish mysticism.

             Read the full description from the publisher


"A thoroughly original tale with plenty of appeal for older middle-graders through teens." -- Kirkus Reviews


A February 2016 selection from the Junior Library Guild




(for adults) 

(no ghost-bears in this one. but an evil rooster, and some wizards)


A singularly effervescent novel pivoting around the disappearance of an American businessman in the Philippines and the long-suffering son, jilted lover, slick police commissioner, misguided villain, and supernatural saviors who all want a piece of him. 

             Read the full description (and an excerpt!) from the publisher


"[D]azzling... readers will be gratified by the ambition and raw energy on display in this particular promising debut." -- The Wall Street Journal


Listed among the best books of 2011 by Kirkus Reviews


Other Fiction

(mostly short, mostly for adults) 


I have also published short fiction in a number of journals and anthologies, including The Kenyon Review, Gigantic Worlds, and American Fiction. Some of these stories can be read online at the links below:


Valentine, which appeared in Recommended Reading, and is also available as a Kindle Single.


I Know Them For Their Wounds, which appeared in Salon.


Your Ascendancy, which appeared in


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