5 Young Adult Books To Read Right Now

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The thing about being a book blogger is that so much of my reading time tends to be based around review copies. Sure, there’s plenty to choose from and I can just follow my moods. Sometimes though, I like reading a good risk free, obligation free book. The Map From Here To There by Emery Lord was an obligation free book. I didn’t have an ARC, an eARC or my money invested into it. It was a library pick up.

After reading this book, I know a few things. One, I want to have all of the books Emery Lord has ever written on my bookshelves (which will absolutely happen once I read through and get rid of a whole pile of books and clear some space out). Two, I just relate to her characters. It’s not so much their situation, but more the character at the core. It is the overthinking. There are also the multifaceted pieces of being young – a job, extracurriculars, worrying about paying for college, being nostalgic for a moment you are in right now. I loved this extra look at Paige Hancock and this what comes next for her. This book is so special – like all of Emery Lord’s books – just get your hands on The Map From Here To There and you’ll see what I mean.


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I really love jumping through genres and different types of books. Dragon Hoops by Gene Luen Yang is another young adult book that I’m glad I picked up on a whim. Yes, it was a review copy but not one where I also had a deadline staring me down. Yang’s Dragon Hoops is a graphic novel that details Bishop O’Dowd High School’s journey to the California State basketball championship intertwining with Yang’s process of creating this book.

Dragon Hoops is non fiction about sports from the point of view from a not so athletically inclined person. It goes into detail on the backstory of some of the players, the history of basketball and the team. Ultimately, this book made me want to play basketball as well as watch it. It’s a quick, engaging read full of people I really came to care about. The art is easy to follow – characters are easy to recognize. Pick this book up while you’re in between watching March Madness games.


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It is interesting to me, the mixed reviews I have seen for Sandhya Menon’s latest, Of Curses And Kisses. On the one hand, I get why – this book is quite different from her Dimple-Rishi etc books. That’s okay. On the other, I liked that the start of her new St. Rosetta series was such a departure. I am interested to see the direction this series goes in and what other fairy tales will be explored (if that is the intent).

Of Curses And Kisses follows main characters Jaya Rao and Grey Emerson. Jaya is a princess from India. Grey Emerson is an English lord. There’s some animosity between the two families – as a long time ago someone from the Emerson family stole rubies from a Mysuru temple during the time of imperialism. So, someone from the Rao family cursed the Emerson family. Both Jaya and Grey are seniors at St. Rosetta’s – a posh boarding school in the Colorado mountains where children of the wealthy go. At first Jaya plans to make Grey fall in love with her and break his heart — but life has other plans for her.

I think that Of Curses And Kisses did get off to a slow start. However, once I really got into it, somewhere around the 150 page mark, I had a hard time setting it down. At that point I was invested in Jaya and Grey as people. There were some parts I was not overly wild about, and well, let me just say protect Grey at all costs. But overall, this is the kind of book I would have loved as an actual teenager – so I’d certainly recommend. Go in expecting it to be different from Dimple et al, and I hope you end up enjoying the experience as much as I did.


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Marie Rutkoski’s books are such a treat – even when the characters are basically getting tortured. The Midnight Lie is set in the same world as The Winner’s Curse and oh my god I was anxious the whole time I was reading it. You see, I was very invested in Nirrim, the main character who really has had the shaft in life.

The Midnight Lie is set on this island where the populace is divided into three classes: Half Kith, Middlings, and High Kith. The half kith are the lowest of the low and can be forced to give tithes and attacked by the militia for random things. The middlings are the middle class and are a bit better off. Then there’s the high kith – who are rich and live pleasant rewarding, worry free lives for the most part. Nirrim is a half kith orphan who ends up adopted by a middling woman named Raven along with two other young ladies. Through circumstances, Nirrim ends up in jail across from a foreigner named Sid who is rakish and doesn’t really understand why things are the way that they are in Nirrim’s world.

What results is a deeply engaging love story as well as a story of waking up to the lies that make up Nirrim’s society and ultimately, her life. I got really into this book after we meet Sid. There’s a lot to unwrap with Nirrim and some revelations get dropped. The ending was such a shock but I loved it. I am so eager for the next book from Marie Rutkoski and just have to know what happens next.


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I want to preface my review of Infinity Son by Adam Silvera by pointing out that I am absolutely not the target audience for this book. This is perfectly reasonable and fine. I picked this book up because the previous two books I read by Silvera were books that really hit when I read them. As it turns out, this wasn’t my favorite of his work but I am so glad it exists.

Infinity Son follows brothers Emil and Brighton who are hoping something special will happen on their 18th birthday – something that will turn them into Celestials which are basically superheroes. Brighton is incredibly smart and social media savvy. Emil has a soft heart and honestly can be a bit naive, but I’d ride or die for him before Brighton. Anyways, the two end up caught in a battle between Celestials and Spectors (who get their powers from ingesting alchemical potions).


This book is perfect for gay teens who wish to seem themselves reflected in the hero role. There is a lot of representation in this book and that’s wonderful. For me though, it wasn’t entirely my thing but that’s okay – not every book is meant to. I won’t hesitate to recommend this book. One thing too that’s cool is that it is written in this way that is very accessible and well how I imagine actual teenagers speak (I spend most of my time with a toddler and adults, so I guess I’ll understand this in like ten years). The phoenix mythology is also really an awesome element but I would have liked more exploration of that.

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April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.
About April (Books&Wine)

April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.

Comments

  1. The Map from Here to There had me sloppy crying. At first, I was disappointed, that it wasn’t the romance I wanted. The first book was so focused on Paige’s recovery, I wanted to see the romance bloom, but I was there for the friendship. I also gave it 5-stars, and Lord is a favorite of mine.

  2. Of Curses and Kisses looks like a good read. I’m thinking since I haven’t read the others I wouldn’t have such a hard time with the change of writing! Great list!
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