I have one desk where I usually write my YA novels. But as an author, I’m constantly reading YA books. Many books pass over my desk (and then on to Kate) so we thought we’d start sharing quick blurbs about the titles we’ve been enjoying. We will keep doing full reviews for new books and debuts. But many times readers might stop by and want to know – what should I pick up next? We will never feature titles we don’t recommend. These are tried and true and some have been around for a good while. As part of our series I will include the publishers blurb, some quick thoughts, and then three words I feel sum up the feel of the story. Then, you can decide if you want to investigate these titles for yourself.
Blurb: For Kai, nothing will ever be normal again.
Sixteen-year-old Kai’s life is shattered forever by a letter from her sister, Jen, which begins, “If you are reading this, I am already gone.” Jen has committed suicide. Heartbroken and furious, Kai gets caught in a downward spiral, self-medicating and lashing out. When her parents decide to send her to a summer camp for grieving teens, she resists. But eventually, sharing her feelings with kids who understand helps her move forward … and even fall in love
This stunning novel offers a roadmap for anyone touched by loss or looking for hope in a broken world.
Read this book if you: are looking for a story about one girl navigating a horrible tragedy with honesty and heart. If you love books where a character really learns about life and herself but doesn’t necessarily get all the answers in the end, this one is for you.
Three Words: Raw. Honest. Hopeful.
Blurb: Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed.
Soon afterward, his death is a national headline. Some are calling him a thug, maybe even a drug dealer and a gangbanger. Protesters are taking to the streets in Khalil’s name. Some cops and the local drug lord try to intimidate Starr and her family. What everyone wants to know is: what really went down that night? And the only person alive who can answer that is Starr.
But what Starr does—or does not—say could upend her community. It could also endanger her life.
Read this book if you: are ready for a story ripped from the headlines, featuring a fabulous and rich main character. Get ready to laugh, cry, cheer, and become outraged at many of the themes and happenings in this book.
Three Words: Stunning. Powerful. Sweeping.
Blurb: Anna can’t wait for her senior year in Atlanta, where she has a good job, a loyal best friend, and a crush on the verge of becoming more. So she’s not too thrilled when her father unexpectedly ships her off to boarding school in Paris – until she meets Etienne St. Clair, the perfect boy. The only problem? He’s taken, and Anna might be, too, if anything comes of her crush back home. Will a year of romantic near-misses end in the French kiss Anna awaits?
Read this book if you: want a fun, lighthearted, romantic story with a swoon-worthy love interest. If you enjoy all things Paris, or dream of visiting one day, this one will make you want to book a flight.
Three Words: Romantic. Funny. Paris.
Disclaimer: Some of the books we feature in this series contain mature themes and language. Only you can judge what is acceptable for you, or––parents––for your children to read. We advise you to research before you purchase. If you have any specific content questions, you can comment below or send us an email. Happy reading!