So down under in sunny Australia it’s summer is fast approaching, and what better time to read a cute contemporary than summer? So today I will giving my top recommendations for contemporary reads, all YA, no adult, in case you couldn’t tell.
Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
Anna is looking forward to her senior year in Atlanta, where she has a great job, a loyal best friend, and a crush on the verge of becoming more. Which is why she is less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris–until she meets Étienne St. Clair. Smart, charming, beautiful, Étienne has it all…including a serious girlfriend.
But in the City of Light, wishes have a way of coming true. Will a year of romantic near-misses end with their long-awaited French kiss?
This book is the first in a trilogy of contemporary novels and they arethe cutest, funnest, most exciting contemporary novels. Anna is the best in the trilogy but you should read absolutely all of them! The relationships are well-developed and you will have such a fun time reading them.
Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell
Eleanor… Red hair, wrong clothes. Standing behind him until he turns his head. Lying beside him until he wakes up. Making everyone else seem drabber and flatter and never good enough…Eleanor.
Park… He knows she’ll love a song before he plays it for her. He laughs at her jokes before she ever gets to the punch line. There’s a place on his chest, just below his throat, that makes her want to keep promises…Park.
Set over the course of one school year, this is the story of two star-crossed sixteen-year-olds—smart enough to know that first love almost never lasts, but brave and desperate enough to try.
Rainbow Rowell has written three YA contemporary novels and you should read all of them! Eleanor and Park is the first that she wrote and my favourite of her novels. The relationship is adorable and amazing and I love the sub-story about Eleanor’s family. If you’re interested in contemporary novels with more than just romance this is for you.
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel’s story is about to be completely rewritten.
This is a classic and one I’m sure many of you have already read but I had to recommend it anyway. It’s an incredible story that not only is adorable but has characters that are suffering with an illness no person, especially not one so young, should ever have to go through.
The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
Charlie is a freshman.
And while he’s not the biggest geek in the school, he is by no means popular. Shy, introspective, intelligent beyond his years yet socially awkward, he is a wallflower, caught between trying to live his life and trying to run from it.
Charlie is attempting to navigate his way through uncharted territory: the world of first dates and mix tapes, family dramas and new friends; the world of sex, drugs, and The Rocky Horror Picture Show, when all one requires is that perfect song on that perfect drive to feel infinite. But he can’t stay on the sideline forever. Standing on the fringes of life offers a unique perspective. But there comes a time to see what it looks like from the dance floor.
This is a book that I think really captures the high school experience. The ups, the downs, the friendships, the heartbreaks, they’re experiences every adolescent goes through and they’re so perfectly written about. The sub-plot at the conclusion of the novel is a really intense subject matter and is the one thing that moves outside of the “regular high school experience” but it a welcome addition to the plot of the story.
All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
Theodore Finch is fascinated by death, and he constantly thinks of ways he might kill himself. But each time, something good, no matter how small, stops him.
Violet Markey lives for the future, counting the days until graduation, when she can escape her Indiana town and her aching grief in the wake of her sister’s recent death.
When Finch and Violet meet on the ledge of the bell tower at school, it’s unclear who saves whom. And when they pair up on a project to discover the “natural wonders” of their state, both Finch and Violet make more important discoveries: It’s only with Violet that Finch can be himself—a weird, funny, live-out-loud guy who’s not such a freak after all. And it’s only with Finch that Violet can forget to count away the days and start living them. But as Violet’s world grows, Finch’s begins to shrink.
This a book that is deeply, deeply emotional and super adorable at the same time. It’s beautiful and meaningful and not just another typical romance. It’s different, and it’s special and should be read by everyone.
I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson
Jude and her twin brother, Noah, are incredibly close. At thirteen, isolated Noah draws constantly and is falling in love with the charismatic boy next door, while daredevil Jude cliff-dives and wears red-red lipstick and does the talking for both of them. But three years later, Jude and Noah are barely speaking. Something has happened to wreck the twins in different and dramatic ways . . . until Jude meets a cocky, broken, beautiful boy, as well as someone else—an even more unpredictable new force in her life. The early years are Noah’s story to tell. The later years are Jude’s. What the twins don’t realize is that they each have only half the story, and if they could just find their way back to one another, they’d have a chance to remake their world.
This book is seriously emotional and really moved me in a way I didn’t think a contemporary actually could. The central relationship was between a brother and a sister instead of a romantic relationship (which still was present) and it was beautiful and messy and amazing and I loved everything about it.
Alright so they are my contemporary recommendations, let me know down below what your favourite contemporaries are and whether you’ve read these books or not.
Signing off, Verity