Do I ever stop reading contemporaries?
The answer to this question is a resounding no. Lately I’ve been reading contemporaries more than ever, and loving them more than ever, too. Today I’ll be sharing five contemporaries I read recently and loved so much that I had to share them with you, too!
All of these books were featured in my June library haul, and this is the long-promised follow-up to that post in which I share my thoughts and ratings. I’ve been looking forward to this for ages now. 😉
If you’re looking for summer book recommendations, you’re in the right place! I’m here to help you find the perfect contemporary (or five) to add to your TBR. Let’s get started!
Everything Leads to You, by Nina LaCour
Page Count: 312
Before reading this book, I heard so much about it. There was a lot of hype surrounding it, so I was nervous to read it, but it was absolutely perfect.
I kind of want to keep rereading this book over and over again (and knowing me, I probably will). The writing was amazing, the ships were the best, and I felt fully submerged into Emi’s world.
The story follows Emi and takes place in the summer after her senior year of high school. She’s preparing for college in the fall, dealing with a break-up, and working as a set designer intern. Everything changes for her when she finds a letter that opens up a whole world of mysteries and new adventures.
As the adventures unfolded, I fell in love with Emi, all the friendship dynamics between her and her best friend, Charlotte, and of course the adorable romance between Emi and a girl whose name I shall not mention because spoilers. 😉 It was also SO interesting to read about all the set design and learn more about that.
This is a five star read if I’ve ever seen one! It’s perfect for any time of year, but if you’re looking for a summer contemporary that will melt your heart, look no further.
Girl Against the Universe, by Paula Stokes
Page Count: 400
I first fell in love with Paula Stoke’s writing when I read This is How it Happened. I instantly wanted to read all her other books, and Girl Against the Universe didn’t disappoint at all.
My favorite part about this book is definitely the characters. I quickly became a fan of the main character, Maguire. Maguire sees herself as a bad luck charm- no matter where she goes, horrible things happen to other people but never to her.
One thing I loved about this book was that Maguire constantly pushed herself and took risks instead of staying in her bedroom forever. She really grew as a character throughout the book, and that’s so important! I also loved the love interest…it’s an adorable romance that doesn’t take over the whole story, but is still so cute.
My only major complaint is that this book is a little long, but it’s so worth it to spend more time in Maguire’s world. 🙂 It’s perfect for a summer’s day!
Under Rose-Tainted Skies, by Louise Gornall
Page Count: 330
This book. *clutches heart*
Under Rose-Tainted Skies deals with anxiety, OCD, and agoraphobia. It’s not a light book, yet it still manages to tie in an adorable romance that had me squealing with happiness!
I can’t speak for extreme anxiety, OCD, or agoraphobia as I haven’t experienced them, but I do feel as if I understand them a lot better after reading this book. It was so interesting to be inside of Norah’s head as she battled with them, and I think the author did really well at the representation. But! Like I said, I really can’t say for sure, since I don’t have extreme anxiety, OCD, or agoraphobia.
I LOVED Norah’s relationship with her mom (who else loves parent-child relationships? because I’m all for them) and also the romance. It was fairly slow-burning (for a YA contemporary) and awkward yet adorable and heart melting and heart breaking and I can’t stop squealing because I loved it that much. XD
This book isn’t light and fluffy, it deals with important issues, and that’s what makes it amazing. Now, off you go to read it. 🙂
Saints and Misfits, by S.K. Ali
Page Count: 352
I didn’t have any prior knowledge or expectations going into this book, and I’m glad I didn’t. So I’ll try to be as subtle as possible in this review. 😉
The thing that really got me about this book- the thing that made it so amazing to me- were all the relationships. The main character, Janna, has many different kinds of relationships with tons of different people.
You have her granddaughter-grandfather like relationship with the man she helps take care of, her sibling relationship with her brother, her complicated friendships, her sometimes-rocky-but-loving relationship with her mother, and…some other ones that I shall not say because this is a spoiler-free review.
I loved seeing her interactions with other characters, and that’s really what I loved about this novel! I also really enjoyed the Muslim representation, but as I am not a Muslim teen I can’t say if it was accurate or not.
I want to revisit this book again someday, and it was a great contemporary to read over the summer! There is a trigger warning, so please highlight here if you want to see it: sexual assault.
Popular: Vintage Wisdom for a Modern Geek, by Maya Van Wagenen
Page Count: 272
This book was not what I expected at all.
Did I expect to enjoy it? Yes. Did I expect to read it in one sitting and love it? No.
Spoiler, that’s exactly what happened.
This book had me captivated from page one! I was so eager to figure out how Maya’s quest to become popular would unfold. Her hilarious writing style, knack for storytelling, and adventures throughout the book had me hooked.
I wouldn’t call this book heavy in the least, but it wasn’t fluffy either? It was light and airy and the perfect summer read. Short, sweet, and incredibly entertaining.
And there you have it! I’m sorry this is a little late (I’ve been promising it since mid-June), but better late than never, right?
This was quite a few less books than my original library haul post, but I already reviewed A List of Cages separately, and then I didn’t finish the other two books I got. Besides, last time I did this type of post, the amount of reviews I did was a bit…ambitious. 😉
I hope you enjoyed this post, and I hope even more that you came away with at least one new book added to your TBR!
The monster grows larger. All of these books are great summer (well, and year round) reads.
Have you read any of these books? What did you think of them? Which ones do you still want to read? I’d love to chat with you in the comments.