Summer Reading Recommendations

If you are looking for some books to read this summer, whether its a simple beach read, or more complex social situation, try out some of these suggestions. Books are in no particular order. Images are linked to the CW Mars catalog so you can easily place a hold.

The lake never forgets. Kayla and Esme return to Camp Pine Lake and are determined to make it a great summer. But when suspicious incidents begin to happen around camp they become nervous that someone else may not have forgotten what happened all those summers ago.

It has been a LONG time since I’ve read a suspense/thriller and I wanted to jump back in with something light. I really enjoyed this book! It felt a little redundant at points but the end hit me with an unexpected twist that redeemed the book. I definitely recommend this for anyone that wants a light suspense/thriller and it is perfect for a wide range of teen/tween readers. #yasuspense #yathriller #yasummerread #summercamp

If you want to read more about this book, check out my March 2021 Girls with Sharp Sticks Review. In short, I definitely recommend this book for those who like Young’s other series, like a light sci-fi thriller, or want a “down with the patriarchy” uber feminist book. You can also join me at the Gale Free Library this summer, this is our first read for Teen book club! Check out our website for more details. #yascifi #yasummerread #boardingschool #bookreview #yabookclub

Once again, if you want to read more about this book, check out my February 2021 Lore Review. In short, recommended for those that are fans of Greek mythology and The Hunger Games. #yafantasy #yadystopian #greekmythology #yasummerread #bookreview

Some summer vibes and real conversation. Ashley is used to living in her privileged bubble of L.A where she does not face the realities her Black brothers and sisters live daily. But when the Rodney King riots start, Ashley finds she may have less in common with her childhood friends than she thinks and will come into her own as she stands up for what is right.

This book discusses important topics of racism and police brutality, but also deals with abuse, depression, and suicide. I appreciated the book being divided into the before, during, and after that also follow Ashley’s character development as she comes into her own. A great summer read, dive into the L.A heat in more ways than one. #yarealisticfiction #yahistoricalfiction #yasummerread

Dimple thinks she has life figured out. She’s ready to escape her family and her mother’s constant nagging to find the “Ideal Indian Husband.” She’ll go to college, be successful, and find what she’s been looking for, freedom. Or, so she thinks. Enter Rishi Patel, a romantic who can’t wait to woo his future bride. He believes in tradition, stability, and respect for his parents. He is thrilled when his parents inform him he will be attending the same summer program with his future bride. Dimple think she is being sent to the summer program for aspiring web developers to give her a leg up when she enters college. Little does she know her parents have been conspiring with the Patels for some time. When they meet (in a less than graceful manner) Dimple thinks she has Rishi all figured out. But, when it comes to love, you never really can predict the future.

This is the perfect cute summer romance beach read! #yaromance #yasummerread #yabeachread

Justyce McAllister is college bound, top of his class, model citizen. But none of that matters to the officer that pulls him over and puts him in handcuffs. All he sees is the color of his skin. Justyce begins writing letters in his journal to the great Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. As a personal project Justyce seeks to find guidance through Dr. King’s words but he wonders if they even apply anymore. One day he’s riding with his best friend Manny, when they encounter an off duty white cop, words get heated, shots are fired and from there everything spirals for Justyce.

I cannot recommend this book enough, EVERYONE should read this book. (and might I add the audio book read by Dion Graham is phenomenal too!) Incredibly moving, raw, and real. READ this book. And when you finish, read Dear Justyce next. #socialjustice #racism #yasummerread #youhavetoreadthisbook

Zelie remembers the days when Orisha was filled with magic. The burners, tiders, and reapers controlling the elements of the world with elegance and grace. But all of that ended the night they took her mother, when the tyrannical king butchered the Magi and took away their magic. Zelie is given one chance to bring back magic. With the help of her brother, and the runaway princess, she must journey through the dangers of Orisha to gain control of her own powers and restore the magic unrightfully taken from her people.

It’s been awhile since I was blown away by a fantasy series, but WOW! I was completely captivated with this one. The magic rooted in African lore, the romance, the adventure, all of it is truly an epic fantasy. Highly recommend this for fantasy readers! This is another one that I also highly recommend the audio book read by Bahni Turpin, it’s PHENOMENAL! Check out book 2 in the series as well and then join all of us in impatiently waiting for the 3rd! #yafantasy #yasummerread

The United States is no more after a viral plague wiped out half the world and left another small portion with magical abilities. Noam is the son of undocumented refugees and has spent his life fighting for their rights as outbreaks continue. After Noam contract the virus he has the ability to control technology and is offered a position at the Ministry to learn how to use and control his power. He believes he has found a way to make true change but after meeting the minister’s son his path is less clear.

If you want a book that has it all, THIS IS IT! A plague that wiped out half the population, refugees, dystopian government, LGBTQ+ romance, abuse, and that’s just what I can remember at the moment! I received this book as an Advanced Reader copy (ARC) when it was first published and to say I was impressed is an understatement. I think this book is underappreciated as Victoria Lee’s debut novel. I definitely recommend this one for those who enjoy books that break out of the norm and cross many genres. #yascifi #yadystopian #yasummerread #yaLGBTQ+ #pandemicread

I am going to quote good reads on this one because I can’t say it better myself, “Based on the experience of real-life Auschwitz prisoner Dita Kraus, this is the incredible story of a girl who risked her life to keep the magic of books alive during the Holocaust.
Fourteen-year-old Dita is one of the many imprisoned by the Nazis at Auschwitz. Taken, along with her mother and father, from the Terezín ghetto in Prague, Dita is adjusting to the constant terror that is life in the camp. When Jewish leader Freddy Hirsch asks Dita to take charge of the eight precious volumes the prisoners have managed to sneak past the guards, she agrees. And so Dita becomes the librarian of Auschwitz.

I know it’s shocking I would love a book about a girl who is essentially a librarian, who knew! But honestly, this books was heartbreaking and inspiring all wrapped up in a beautiful novel. #yahistoricalfiction #yasummerread #WorldWarII #Holocaust

“Sixteen-year-old Gabi Hernandez chronicles her senior year in high school as she copes with her friend Cindy’s pregnancy, friend Sebastian’s coming out, her father’s meth habit, her own cravings for food and cute boys, and especially, the poetry that helps forge her identity.”-from the publisher.

Gabi has an incredible amount of life to deal with in her senior year. She stumbles her way through frustrations, uncertainties and pain, through her poetry she comes to find the beautiful Latina girl she is. I listened to this on audio book, read by Kyla Garcia and I would actually recommend it over the print book. It’s extremely rare I make that choice BUT, the way this book is written is really meant to be heard. The poetic and conversational diary format speaks louder. #yarealisticfiction #yasummerread #teenpregnancy #familyiscomplicated

“Amanda Hardy is the new girl in school in Lambertville, Tennessee. Like any other girl, all she wants is to make friends and fit in. But Amanda is keeping a secret. There’s a reason why she transferred schools for her senior year, and why she’s determined not to get too close to anyone. And then she meets Grant Everett. Grant is unlike anyone she’s ever met — open, honest, kind — and Amanda can’t help but start to let him into her life. As they spend more time together, she finds herself yearning to share with Grant everything about herself … including her past. But she’s terrified that once she tells Grant the truth, he won’t be able to see past it. Because the secret that Amanda’s been keeping? It’s that she used to be Andrew.”-from the publisher.

Yes, sometimes I prefer to quote the publisher description because #1 I can’t describe it any better myself. #2 it has been a few years since I’ve read the book. That does NOT mean the book is any less amazing! I’ll be real here and say this book was really eyeopening for me as a cisgender, white female, I have no idea the challenges, the fear, and the hatred that transgender teens face. It is part of my lifelong learning personality that makes me seek out understanding, or at least experiences of people who are different from my own because this is how we learn and grow, become more understanding, empathetic, and accepting. I appreciate this book so much for being so raw and real. But, this book really makes an impact on its own, not as an education for cisgender folk, but as a beautiful novel about a girl who gets to be a girl, go to prom, and find her people who love and support her for who she truly is. #yarealisticfiction #yasummerread #transgenderteens #yaromance

Yes, they made a movie. Yes, you probably know the whole story. BUT READ THE BOOK! I love Nicola Yoon’s writing and I think you should read every one of her books! This is the story of just a snippet of life but it is so beautiful. It is the struggles and uncertainty, the pain and beauty of life all wrapped up in a swoon worthy novel. If you haven’t read it yet you should! And if you have then be on the look out for her newest book coming out in June 2021 Instructions for Dancing, I can’t wait to read!!! #yaromance #yasummerread

Five students go to detention on Monday, but only 4 students go home. Simon is the notorious creator of Bayview High Shcool’s number one gossip app. Bronwyn is the braniac, AP student who is soon off to Yale and never breaks the rules. Addy is the perfect picture of a homecoming queen. Cooper is the star baseball athlete. And Nate is the drug dealing bad boy. Before detention ends, Simon is dead and not everything is as it seems. The Bayview 4 are under investigation and have secrets to hide. No one knows who to trust.

THIS is how you write a murder mystery! I loved everything about this book, the structure, the writing, the plot, the characters, ALL OF IT! It definitely lives up to the hype if you haven’t read it yet, it’s a must read. Another one that the audio book was well done and I liked that there were four different narrators, giving each character their unique voice, like listening to an interrogation. This definitely tops my list of favorite YA books. Check out the sequel One of Us is Next. It’s not a repeat, trust me, it’s worth the read! #yamystery #yamurdermystery #yasummerread

“When America won the Revolutionary War, its people offered General George Washington a crown. Two and a half centuries later, the House of Washington still sits on the throne.

As Princess Beatrice gets closer to becoming America’s first queen regnant, the duty she has embraced her entire life suddenly feels stifling.

Nobody cares about the spare except when she’s breaking the rules, so Princess Samantha doesn’t care much about anything, either . . . except the one boy who is distinctly off-limits to her.

And then there’s Samantha’s twin, Prince Jefferson. If he’d been born a generation earlier, he would have stood first in line for the throne, but the new laws of succession make him third. Most of America adores their devastatingly handsome prince . . . but two very different girls are vying to capture his heart.” -from Goodreads.

Phew! Talk about the drama, love triangles, and romance! We always want what we can’t have, human nature right? This book had my emotions all over the place! McGee really focuses on developing the characters and keeps a rather suspenseful plot (especially with Daphne’s unpredictable dark side). This is yet another one that I really enjoyed the audio book as read by Brittany Pressley. If you enjoyed reading Kiera Cass’s Selection Series, you’ll love this one too. #yaromance #yahistoricalfiction #yasummerread

“In a world where disease has been eliminated, the only way to die is to be randomly killed (gleaned) by professional reapers (scythes). Citra and Rowan are teenagers who have been selected to be scythe’s apprentices, and despite wanting nothing to do with the vocation they must learn the art of killing and come to understand the necessity of what they do. Only one of them will be chosen as a scythe’s apprentice. And when it becomes clear that the winning apprentice’s first task will be to glean the loser, Citra and Rowan are pitted against one another in a fight for their lives.”-from the publisher.

THIS IS MY ALL TIME FAVORITE YA SERIES since the Hunger Games!!!!! Why is it last on my list? Because we save the best for last of course! This is everything I want from a dystopian novel, not to mention the dark nature of becoming a professional scythe whose job it is to glean innocent people. It’s a twisted unfair world (with a little love twist thrown in there) and I am obsessed! This was the first series I’ve ever pre-ordered and read the day it came, if that doesn’t convince you to read it, then I don’t know what will. If you are a fan of the Hunger Games and Divergent, then you can’t miss this trilogy! #yadystopian #yasummerread #myfavoriteseries

This wraps up my list for now. There are many more I could add but this list would be WAY too long if I added them all. Stop by the library if you’re looking for more suggestions. Also, check out my other book reviews and lists on the blog!

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