Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by the Broke and the Bookish. Each week, they post a book-related prompt for book bloggers to answer. This week’s prompt is Top Ten Books to Read When You are in the Mood for Contemporary YA
This week is only a top five, because as I was writing this list I came to the realisation that a) I don’t read as much contemporary YA as I thought I did, and
b) I have a tendency to follow authors, not books, especially authors who cross genres.
1. Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda: I’m pretty sure that this book managed to top everyone’s Best of 2015 list, and that I don’t really need to be talking about why you should read it… but just in case you managed to miss it, Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda manages to find that perfect balance between being light & fluffy and tackling serious issues head-on, possibly because Becky Albertalli is (was?) a high school counsellor. It’s a fun read, from beginning to end. It can also be read in one sitting – and now that winter is approaching, I look forward to (re)reading it whilst curled up in my reading armchair on rainy weekends.
2. Saving Francesca: When it comes to Marchetta’s contemporary YA fiction, everyone will talk about Josie but Frankie is really where it’s at. This book deals with another serious issue – depression – but there are moments of lightness and sweetness that make it feel like a lighter read than it actually is. Given the alternative rock bands that keep popping up courtesy of Tom Finch-Mackee’s Discman (you read that right, folks: Discman), it’s the perfect book to read while listening to Jimmy Eat World, Incubus, and any other 90s – 00s alternative band you happen to be fond of.
3. Feeling Sorry for Celia: Okay, so the slang in this is dated – really dated – but it still manages to be a timeless story about the awkwardness of being a teenager, told entirely in epistolary form. I first read this book in 2001 when I was ten, and it was definitely a book I kept pulling out in high school because Elizabeth and Christina felt so real and relatable to me.
4. The Virgin Suicides: I avoided this book for years, assuming that it would be pretentious and hipster-y, so you can imagine my surprise when I finally sat down and read it and realised that it was kind of a modern-day take on tragedy. Also, the film? One of the best film adaptations ever made.
5. The Perks of Being a Wallflower: Honestly, this book just breaks my heart. While Chbosky does deal with big issues like suicide, drugs and abuse, there’s something that makes Charlie so relatable – when he’s writing those letters, you really do feel like they’re meant for you. It’s insightful and poignant and just… a beautiful book.