A-Z to ya contemporaries!

book-recs.1

Hello, friends!

Today’s post is quite a lengthy one, so I apologize. But, I feel like it’s a pretty well-known fact by now that my favorite genre is YA contemporaries. It’s all I read most of the time, and in honor of that, I decided it would be cute to come up with a compilation but in A-Z style.

The letter will be in the title or name of the author. For the ones that I couldn’t find any books, I’ll be recommending something else instead.

A IS FOR A BOY WORTH KNOWING BY JENNIFER COSGROVE

34337289. sy475 This is an incredibly sweet YA contemporary, following seventeen-year-old Nate, who’s falling in love for the new boy in town – adorable and overly nice, James. It’s all about bonding while watching TV, overprotective aunts and a tiiiiiny bit of ghost-watching. Literally just fluff, no plot.

☔️ rep: gay MC, bisexual love interest, m/m relationship
🌈 own-voices: no
🌪 trigger warnings: death of a sibling, bullying

again

B IS FOR BRIGID KEMMERER’S LETTERS TO THE LOST

33857632. sy475 I am, indeed, a Brigid Kemmerer stan first, human second. This is her contemporary debut and follows Declan and Juliet, who start writing letters for each other without knowing who the other person is. It’s angsty and a bit *too* coincidental, but absolutely beautiful nonetheless.

☔️ rep: N/A
🌈 own-voices: no
🌪 trigger warnings: death of a loved one, suicidal ideation and suicide attempt, car accident

i

C IS FOR CHARMING AS A VERB BY BEN PHILIPPE

49867239Set in New York City, Charming as a Verb really is as charming as the name suggests. Halti’s dog walking business is about to be exposed by his ~intense~ upstairs neighbor and he’s also dealing with college rejections and academic pressure. This one is fluffy, hilarious and very important.

☔️ rep: Haitian MC, black love interest, latinx side character
🌈 own-voices: yes
🌪 trigger warnings: N/A

D IS FOR DON’T DATE ROSA SANTOS BY NINA MORENO

41717246. sy475 This one has a *hiiiint* of magical realism, as it follows Rosa Santos, a Cuban-American teenager, whose family has been cursed to fall for a man and lose him to the ocean. It’s a great coming of age story about identity, romance and a lot of dulce de leche.

☔️ rep: latinx MC and love interest
🌈 own-voices: yes
🌪 trigger warnings: death of a loved one, drowning

s

E IS FOR EMMA MILLS’ THIS ADVENTURE ENDS

27779275Is it a post about contemporaries if it doesn’t include Emma Mills? I don’t think so. This one is a must-read if you’re a fan of the found family trope. It follows Sloane, who’s new in town and is adopted by this amazing friend group. It’s also about her dad writing fan fiction and going after missing paintings and a whole lot of other fun stuff.

☔️ rep: half-dominican side characters, lesbian side character
🌈 own-voices: no
🌪 trigger warnings: death of a loved one

F IS FOR FIFTEEN HUNDRED MILES FROM THE SUN, BY JONNY GARZA VILLA

53284187. sy475 This one doesn’t come out until June, but put it on your TBR already! It’s also about found families and a long distance relationship, but mostly it’s about how much delicious food can you fit in a 300 page book.

☔️ rep: gay latinx MC, vietnamese love interest, m/m relationship
🌈 own-voices: yes
🌪 trigger warnings: homophobia, use of homophobic slurs, death of a parent, child abuse, disownment

s

G IS FOR GIRLS ON THE VERGE, BY SHARON BIGGS WALLER

31822503Speak of books that deserve better. This one is short, but packs a punch, as it follows Camille, who’s in a road trip with her two best friends to get an abortion. It’s an infuriating read, as you realize the lengths women have to go through to have control over their bodies, but iconic because of that.

☔️ rep: N/A
🌈 own-voices: no
🌪 trigger warnings: abortion, misogyny, slut shaming

H IS FOR THE HENNA WARS BY ADIBA JAIGIRDAR

44286258. sy475 Not that I think you need *more* reasons to pick up this book, but just in case: remember this is an own-voices Bangladeshi queer story, with a phenomenal sister relationship, a discussion on cultural appropriation and the most adorable F/F relationship you’ll ever read about.

☔️ rep: bangladeshi lesbian MC, afro-latinx love interest, F/F relationship
🌈 own-voices: yes
🌪 trigger warnings: racism, homophobia, bullying and outing of a character

I IS FOR THE INEXPLICABLE LOGIC OF MY LIFE BY BENJAMIN ALIRE SÁENZ

23447923From the same author of Ari & Dante, this one is a heartfelt contemporary that follows three best friends and their journey of figuring out who they really are. As can be expected, the writing is phenomenal and the family element is *chef’s kiss* perfection.

☔️ rep: latinx protagonists, gay side character
🌈 own-voices: yes
🌪 trigger warnings: violence, death of a loved one, neglect, homophobia

aa

J IS FOR JACKPOT, BY NIC STONE

43744298Ha. You really thought I was *not* going to recommend Nic Stone? You wish. Jackpot follows Zan and Rico, as they try to find a missing lotto ticket. It also has great discussions of poverty and privilege, an adorable younger brother and an A+ romance.

☔️ rep: black MC, half-latinx love interest
🌈 own-voices: yes
🌪 trigger warnings: financial problems, poverty, mention of panic attacks

aa

K IS FOR KRISTINA FOREST’S NOW THAT I’VE FOUND YOU

46223352This one is also about a cute mystery! Our protagonist, Evie, is trying to find her eccentric grandma who used to be a huge movie star back in the 50s, around the streets of New York, accompanied by the musician Milo and some internal struggles about the price of fame.

☔️ rep: black MC, black love interest
🌈 own-voices: yes
🌪 trigger warnings: N/A


L IS FOR LOVELESS, BY ALICE OSEMAN

42115981. sy475 Alice Oseman is another household name when it comes to YA contemporaries. This is her latest release and centers around Georgia in her journey of acceptance as an aromantic-asexual fanfic-obsessed college freshman. The platonic relationships in here are just!!!!!!!#$(!#!)!!

☔️ rep: aro-ace MC, colombian lesbian side character, pansexual side character, asian gender-non-conforming ace side character
🌈 own-voices: yes for the aro-ace rep
🌪 trigger warnings: internalized aphobia, verbal aphobia, mentions of toxic relationships

M IS FOR MAURENE GOO’S THE WAY YOU MAKE ME FEEL

35704397. sy475 This book is simply *iconic*. It’s the perfect summer read, with food truck shenanigans, a labrador-boy named Hamlet and enemies to friends excellence. It’s also full of Korean food and some great Brazilian references.

☔️ rep: korean-brazilian MC, black side character
🌈 own-voices: yes for the korean rep
🌪 trigger warnings: neglect

no

N IS FOR NOT SO PURE AND SIMPLE BY LAMAR GILES

43520622It’s me again. Telling y’all to read this book. If not you, then a younger brother/cousin/nephew. This phenomenal book explores the topics of “friend zone”, being “the nice guy” and the misogyny behind all these ideas SO very well. It’s also hilarious and full of great sex ed moments.

☔️ rep: black MC, black love interest, queer side character
🌈 own-voices: yes
🌪 trigger warnings: misogyny, toxic masculinity, slut shaming, mentions of teen pregnancy

O IS FOR THE ODDS OF LOVING GROVER CLEVELAND BY REBEKAH CRANE

30057557This book is set in a camp for “at-risk teens” – mostly teens who face different mental health issues, including anorexia, schizophrenia and depression. It’s mostly about unlikely friendships and watching The Breakfast Club, if any of those interest you.

☔️ rep: depression, schizophrenia, eating disorder, bipolar disorder, black side character
🌈 own-voices: N/A
🌪 trigger warnings: ableist language, violence, discussions of past suicide attempts and self-harm practices

P IS FOR PATRON SAINTS OF NOTHING BY RANDY RIBAY

41941681. sy475 Set almost entirely in the Philippines, this one follows Jay, who decides to find the truth behind the mysterious death of his cousin. It brings great perspectives on the current war on drugs in the country and overall some fantastic character work.

☔️ rep: filipino MC
🌈 own-voices: yes
🌪 trigger warnings: brief descriptions of sexual trafficking and rape, police brutality, death of a loved one

Q IS FOR A QUIET KIND OF THUNDER BY SARA BARNARD

30197201. sy475 This book is possibly the most ADORABLE thing to exist. It centers around Stephi, who struggles with selective mutism, and ends up being paired with a deaf boy in one of her classes. Romance ensues and also amazing conversations and adorable friendships.

☔️ rep: deaf love interest, selective mutism, anxiety
🌈 own-voices: N/A
🌪 trigger warnings: panic attacks and anxiety, death of a loved one, cheating

ol

R IS FOR RENT A BOYFRIEND BY GLORIA CHAO

45419339. sy475 This is just me promoting Gloria Chao because I love her. Rent a Boyfriend is a wild ride that starts off with Chloe renting a boyfriend during Thanksgiving to please her parents and, hopefully, stop them from trying to marry her off to the local playboy. It’s hilarious and cheesy and, like stated before, WILD, but I love him for it.

☔️ rep: taiwanese-american MC and love interest
🌈 own-voices: yes
🌪 trigger warnings: disownment, arranged marriage, cancer, racism, slut shaming

S IS FOR SICK KIDS IN LOVE BY HANNA MOSKOWITZ

39897323. sy475 I really do adore this one. Set in New York City, it follows Sasha and Isabel, two chronically ill teens and their friendship that then evolves into romance. It’s diverse, it’s important, it’s also Jewish, but most importantly: it’s unapologetic.

☔️ rep: rheumatoid arthritis and gaucher disease, jewish MC and love interest
🌈 own-voices: yes
🌪 trigger warnings: graphic descriptions of chronic pain and treatments, ableism

T IS FOR TEN THINGS I HATE ABOUT PINKY BY SANDHYA MENON

46216773. sy475 I do recommend reading the whole trilogy, because it is perfection. But, if you only have time for one, I’d say start with this one. It’s a tale of fake-dating and social activism and it totally *reads like summer*.

☔️ rep: indian-american MC and love interest
🌈 own-voices: yes
🌪 trigger warnings: overprotective parents, cancer

ja

U IS FOR THE UPSIDE OF UNREQUITED BY BECKY ALBERTALLI

30653853I know that y’all are probably more than familiar with Becky Albertalli, but you know how hard it is to find titles that start with “u”? This one is diverse and adorable and follows a fat girl trying to, finally, put herself out there in the “dating scene” after 27 (yes, 27!) unrequited crushes.

☔️ rep: fat MC, pansexual chinese-american side character, lesbian side characters, jewish MC
🌈 own-voices: yes for the MC
🌪 trigger warnings: fatphobia and bullying

V IS FOR A VERY LARGE EXPANSE OF SEA BY TAHEREH MAFI

38720939. sy475 OK, this one is technically set in the early 2000s, but it absolutely counts. It’s about a Muslim, hijabi girl named Shirin, falling in love with a boy named Ocean James and their definitely-not-perfect relationship, but that is 100% worth fighting for (and reading about).

☔️ rep: muslim hijabi MC
🌈 own-voices: yes
🌪 trigger warnings: islamophobia, racism

a

W IS WHERE WE GO FROM HERE BY LUCAS ROCHA

50160953This book is set in Brazil (!), where I live, and presents a contemporary Brazilian perspective on the topic of AIDS by the perspectives of these three different boys – Victor, Ian and Henrique. It’s so accurate it hurts and I love it so much for this reason.

☔️ rep: latinx and gay characters
🌈 own-voices: yes
🌪 trigger warnings: homophobia and homophobic slurs, online harassment, anti-HIV sentiments

X IS FOR –
INSTEAD, TAKE THIS REC FOR PLEASE DON’T HUG ME, BY KAY KERR

37577721. sy475 This is an own-voices book for the autistic rep! It’s also a book written entirely in letters, between our protagonist Erin, and her brother who’s not around and we don’t know why. It’s an incredibly important novel that deserves more hype!

☔️ rep: autistic MC
🌈 own-voices: yes
🌪 trigger warnings: internalized ableism, panic attacks, death of a loved one

le

Y IS FOR YOU’D BE MINE BY ERIN HAHN

36146624I absolutely love books talking about music stars and this is, surprisingly, the only one in the list. Here, we follow Clay, who has to invite the America sweetheart, Annie Mathers, to tour with him in order to salvage his reputation. It’s pretty angsty, as it discusses alcoholism and suicide, but absolutely beautiful.

☔️ rep: addiction and PTSD
🌈 own-voices: N/A
🌪 trigger warnings: death of a parent, discussions of suicide, overdose, alcoholism, panic attacks

Z IS FOR –
INSTEAD, TAKE THIS REC FOR LET’S CALL IT A DOOMSDAY, BY KATIE HENRY

40942619. sy475 As a self-proclaimed number one fan for Katie Henry, I had to shoutout this one, about a bi-questoning-Mormon girl who experiences a lot of intrusive thoughts regarding the apocalypse and the girl who tells her she knows when it will happen. It’s mostly about friendships and discussing Jane Austen, which I think is beautiful.

☔️ rep: bisexual mormon MC, lesbian side character, bi side character, anxiety and schizophrenia
🌈 own-voices: N/A
🌪 trigger warnings: anxiety, panic attacks, death of a loved one

Have you read any of these books? If you have recs for YA contemporaries, let me know in the comments!

9 comentários sobre “A-Z to ya contemporaries!

  1. My first thought: wow that’s a lot of books!
    Second: thanks for sharing this, even though my TBR has probably increased significantly!! I’ve been wanting to read both Loveless and the Henna Wars for a long time!

    Curtido por 1 pessoa

  2. Oh this is such a wonderful idea for a recommendation post! ❤ I definitely need to read Letters to the Lost! I love books with a letter format and need to read more of Brigid Kemmerer’s books! I also want to try Emma Mils’ books and read A Quiet Kind of Thunder & Sick Kids in Love 🥰

    Curtido por 1 pessoa

  3. Oh this is so fun, and I love how you put this together! :D I can’t believe how few of these I’ve read…though you know I love me some Alice Oseman, Becky Albertalli, and Emma Mills. And so many more that I definitely need to read, like Charming as a Verb, Patron Saints of Nothing, and Let’s Call It a Doomsday. Thanks for all these wonderful recs, Lais!

    Curtido por 1 pessoa

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