If you've read Moxie by Jennifer Mathieu, if you believe that girls are just as smart as boys, if you like fierce female main characters who never say die, or (spoiler alert) if you're a fan of the enemies to lovers trope, then you'll enjoy Not Here to Be Liked. Girls rule! Eliza Quan for President!
All My Rage by Sabaa Tahir
This quote from Noor kind of sums it up: “I think about the s$%t we've read in school. Those books all about one problem. A kid who's bullied. A kid who's beaten. A kid who's poor. And I think of us and how we've won the s$%t-luck lottery. We have all the problems.” Noor and Salahudin do have all the problems (and then some), which makes this a brutal read – but it’s also such an incredibly good book that you just keep rooting for them no matter how bleak and bad things get. Amazing!
Truly Devious by Maureen Johnson
Book 1 of the Truly Devious Series
I just finished reading the third and final book in this trilogy, The Hand on the Wall, and the whole series is so much fun! I love Stevie as well as all her new friends and classmates at Ellingham (especially all of Stevie’s housemates: reclusive writer Nate; quirky builder Janelle; mysterious, moody David). Johnson’s use of the flashbacks from the 1930s add so much to the story, and I enjoyed how the mysteries of the past and present come together in the final book.
Book 1 of The Folk of the Air series
Love this series so much I'm rereading it. Jude is a prickly heroine who has decided to stop playing nice and go after what she wants, and it's so fun to tag along on her journey. The whole series is full of suspense and plot twists. If you like Game of Thrones-style twisted politics and betrayal, swordplay, romance, spying, and family drama, then I bet you won't be able to put this one down.
Book 1 of the Shades of London trilogy
I'm on a bit of a mystery/thriller kick right now, and this one was quite fun and enjoyable. It's made me want to book a flight to London and soak up the ambiance.
Puddin' by Julie Murphy
Ebook in Overdrive
Although this is a companion to Dumplin' and some of the characters make an appearance (such as Willowdean), it's not necessary to have read Dumplin' to enjoy Puddin' (although it will make a little more sense). I liked how this book dealt with body-acceptance, stereotypes, and how girls can be supportive rather than competitive (but it never takes on a preachy or lecturing tone). Also, Texas -- everything just seems more interesting in Texas.
Ebook in Overdrive
The chapters alternate between the points of view of Sam, Ramona, and Tom -- and they are all interesting characters with unique voices and issues. This book also has an asexual character, which is rare in YA books (although that's changing with books such as The Lady's Guide to Petticoats and Piracy by Mackenzi Lee, Summer Bird Blue by Akemi Dawn Bowman, Before I Let Go by Marieke Nijkamp, and That's Not What Happened by Kody Keplinger) -- and this book gave me a little more insight than some of the other books I've read.
Sex & Violence by Carrie Mesrobian
Ebook in Overdrive
Wow, did this book suck me in, and wow, did I hate Evan at the beginning of the book. Unfortunately, I don't think Evan is all that unusual in his callous treatment of girls (although I wish he were) -- and it's a topic we should be talking about more. Evan's story is a tough, honest, and thought-provoking one that's totally worth reading.
Little & Lion by Brandy Colbert
I liked the diversity of characters in this story, the blended family, and the LA setting. I especially appreciated the way in which this books deals honestly and realistically with the topics of mental health, sexuality, and family.
Satellite by Nick Lake
If you liked The Martian by Andy Weir or you've ever dreamed about being an astronaut, then check out Satellite by Nick Lake.
One of Us Is Lying by Karen McMaus
This book was so much fun to read that I could not put it down! I enjoyed the alternating chapters from the four main characters' points of view, and each character was relatable and went beyond the high school stereotypes. If you like mysteries, this one is for you.
This is a fun, adventurous book about women who want more than the world wants to give them -- and what they are willing to do to achieve their goals. Although it's a sequel, you won't really miss anything if you haven't read the first book (and I liked this one a little better than its predecessor).
Book 2 of the Montague Siblings Series
I really liked Darius (he loves tea; he makes a lot of references to Lord of the Rings and Star Trek; and he's a great big brother to his little sister Laleh). His problems are real, but he faces them with a lot of humor. I also really enjoyed the peak into Persian culture (the food, traditions, and history).
Dear Rachel Maddow by Adrienne Kisner
I loved the epistolary format (the story is all told in emails), and Brynn's voice is so funny and sharp. Brynn struggles in school and at home, but her friends, her comrades in the Blue room, and even her brother's friend all provide a support system that help Brynn to keep fighting the good fight.
This magical realism-tinged novel that bursts with art and color sheds light on depression and captures the dark corners of grief and the feeling of being pulled between two worlds -- culturally, linguistically, generationally, and romantically.
Sadie by Courtney Summers
I was biting my nails all the way through this excellent mystery/thriller, hoping against hope that Sadie and Mattie would get justice and that Sadie wouldn't end up just "another dead girl."
The 57 Bus by Dashka Slater
This true story really grabbed me (and I'm not usually the biggest nonfiction fan), The author does an amazing job of describing the very different worlds these two teens come from, and she presents both of them in a completely unbiased way.
Release by Patrick Ness
I really loved this book. The author says the book was inspired by the novels Mrs. Dalloway and Forever -- I got the reference to Mrs. Dalloway right from the first page (and in retrospect, I can totally see how Forever relates) -- but you don't need to have read either of them to enjoy Release .
Romance + mystery + slasher plot = a fun, gory read.
Red Rising by Pierce Brown
This book has it all -- nonstop action; a great plot; brutal, bloody fights; a cooler than cool main character; and lots of twists and turns. Kind of like The Hunger Games (spectator sports! battles! revolution!) but about a million times better -- and it's in outer space!
Book 1 of the Red Rising Saga
Moxie by Jennifer Mathieu
This book really speaks to what's going on in our society today about how men treat woman (and boys treat girls) and what is and isn't acceptable. It's an uplifting read that will have you cheering on the girls of East Rockport High School.
This story is more than just a sweet romance: it has diverse and interesting characters, deals with the changing relationship of two sisters, and has a very relateable and hilarious main character. Loved it!
Not only is The Hate U Give an excellent book, but it's also an important and timely one. A must read!
Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
Amazing characters and a plot full of action that does not stop, this one is a must read. If you like adventure stories with a dash of fantasy/supernatural (but completely grounded in a very realistic world) and a plot with more twists and turns than a mountain road, give this one a look.
Book 1 of the Six of Crows duology
Bang by Barry Lyga
This is a gripping quick read that looks unflinchingly at how a family deals with loss and grief and pain -- and also, surprisingly, at race in America. Raw and real.