YA Novels: Your “Must Read” Summer List

Today’s post by our YA book reviewer, Melissa Carpenter | @MelissaCarp

As an English teacher, I get to assign summer reading every year… so why not here, on She Reads, too? Summer is the perfect time to kick back with a book and do some reading you might not get to do throughout the rest of the year. If you happen to have teenage daughters, these would be great read and discuss titles, too.  Because I absolutely could not pick just one summer reading title, here are three YA titles perfect for warm weather. Hope you enjoy!

We Were LiarsWE WERE LIARS by E. Lockhart

1. I have not been as surprised by a book – ever, probably – as I was by E. Lockhart’s newest release, We Were Liars. It was so shocking, actually, that I can’t tell you much about it other than to say the writing is great, the setting makes it perfect for summer, and you’re in for a real treat. Do yourself a favor and avoid reading reviews for it until after you’ve finished the book. Liars will be all over bestseller lists, guaranteed!





GoldenGOLDEN by Jessi Kirby

2. I’m a sucker for a good YA novel with a pretty cover, but a book with a pretty cover (even gold foil on the paperback! too gorgeous) AND Robert Frost poetry woven in? I’m so there. Golden by Jessi Kirby is a really beautifully written story full of romance, mystery, and adventure. The story is compelling and the characters are realistically flawed with plenty of redeeming value. Parker, the main character, is a protagonist that I rooted for all the way through, and I couldn’t have been more pleased with the way her story turned out. You’ll love this one!




Anna And the French KissANNA AND THE FRENCH KISS by Stephanie Perkins

3. If there was one book I could live inside – and maybe even BE one of the characters – it’s totally Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins. In it, Anna’s dad sends her off to boarding school in Paris just when everything seems to be looking up for her. Anna doesn’t want to go and doesn’t know any French… but then Anna meets Etienne St. Clair and suddenly Paris doesn’t seem so bad. Perkins’ writing is fantastic, and this story is every bit as magical as you might think a Parisian romance might be. You’ll fall in love with Paris and Etienne and maybe even wish you could go back to high school at a French boarding school! Another great thing about this is that the characters in this book reappear in Perkins’ second book, Lola and the Boy Next Door, and in her third (due out in August), Isla and the Happily Ever After.

About Ariel Lawhon

Ariel Lawhon is the author of THE WIFE THE MAID AND THE MISTRESS (2014), FLIGHT OF DREAMS (2016), and I WAS ANASTASIA (2018). Her books have been translated into numerous languages and have been Library Reads, One Book One County, and Book of the Month Club selections. She is the co-founder of SheReads.org and lives in the rolling hills outside Nashville, Tennessee, with her family.

3 Responses to YA Novels: Your “Must Read” Summer List

  1. Katherine Jones August 4, 2014 at 10:17 am #

    Though I’m not normally a reader of YA, these reviews are so compelling, I’m going to have to take a look. Appreciate the chance to stretch my boundaries a bit.

  2. KristyWoodson Harvey August 5, 2014 at 10:17 pm #

    I’m really enjoying YA reads these days! Thanks for these recommendations!

  3. Davida Chazan August 9, 2014 at 10:17 am #

    I have three more for you. Ostrich by Matt Greene (http://www.curiousbookfans.co.uk/2013/fiction-books/12023/ostrich-matt-greene), The Universe verses Alex Woods by Gavin Extence (http://drchazan.blogspot.co.il/2014/07/a-21st-century-holden-caulfield.html) and My So-Called Ruined Life by Melanie Bishop (http://blogs.timesofisrael.com/finding-buoyancy-in-troubled-waters/).

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