The BEST Books

These are my favorite books and a short summary of each. Most of them are young-adult (YA) as that is my absolute favorite genre and a very underrated one 🙂 (Also great if you are looking for classroom library books for middle and high school!)

Five Feet Apart by Rachael Lippincott

2 kids with CF (cystic fibrosis) fall in love but always have to stay 5 feet apart from each other— a favorite

All The Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

Popular girl falls for the unlikely boy, but unlikely boy is suicidal— my favorite book

The Selection Series by Kiera Cass

Basically the bachelor for princes and princesses super fun and easy, pretty predictable

The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon

Girl is about to be deported and meets guy on the streets in NYC, super cutie

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

Kinda heavier but really really good, abt police racism and brutality from the perspective of a teenage girl that lives in the hood but goes to a preppy white school — a favorite

On the Come Up by Angie Thomas

16 yr old high school rapper is assaulted by two security guards at her school and that helps spark herself as a rapper and her journey through her teenage years living in poverty in the ghetto

Holding Up the Universe by Jennifer Niven

A new fat girl meets the popular guy in high school during community service but his secret is that he can’t recognize faces at all

What to Say Next by Julie Buxbaum 

A popular girls father dies and it’s like a year later so her life is awkward for her bc she’s known as the girl with the dead dad, David is a quirky fella and can’t really socialize well but they start a unique friendship, makes your heart really warm

One of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus

Like the breakfast club but one of the students dies during detention and they don’t know who did it

The Paper Cowboy by Kristin Levin

Kinda different than the others, follows this boy through his boyhood with an abusive family and his tragic mistake that costs him a lot, doesn’t sound very appealing but it is one of my favorite books

Letters to the Lost by Brigid Kemmerer

Girl’s mom dies and she writes letters to her and leaves them on her grave, bad boy with family issues is doing community service in the graveyard and responds to one of her letters. They start this anonymous relationship that has many twists and turns

Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan

Short and cute, Lilly leaves a book of dares in a bookstore for someone to find and they have this anonymous relationship through the activities they have to do in the book

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

Dystopian society, people with red blood are the “slaves” of the world serving the silver blooded people who also have special powers but a red girl is found with powers that are more powerful than the silvers….

Okay for Now by Gary D. Schmidt

Hard to explain just read it’s really good I promise

Unlikely Hero of Room 13b by Teresa Toten

A boy with OCD that goes to a support group and meets a girl there but has to deal with family problems and his OCD, a different perspective on the whole “sick stories”

Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

Popular boy avoids new weird girl at first but as they ride the bus together they start to bond and get to know each other. Eleanor has some major family issues that she doesn’t want to drag Park into but Park soon learns that Eleanor is worth every risk. Super cutie and takes place in the 80’s so it’s a little different than what we’re currently used to in YA novels

Lies You Never Told Me by Jennifer Donaldson 

Dual narrator style, boy in high school is dealing with his PSYCHO gf and girl in hs is the lead in a play and falls for her drama teacher. WILD END!!

Educated by Tara Westover

This one was an insane read! About a girl who has wicked fucked up parents that don’t believe in public education or really any sort of education and also don’t believe in doctors. She goes through family abuse and a whole lot of other shit and gets her Ph.D. Just an unreal true story

Dry by Neal and Jarrod Shusterman

Southern California runs out of water in the “Tap-out.” Different narrators of this group of kids as they try to survive this apocalyptic world with no water. Feels very very real and is kinda scary in terms of human nature and what lengths people will go through to survive

Neanderthal Opens the Door to the Universe by Preston Norton

Makes you laugh makes you cry, just overall SUCH a good book. I don’t wanna explain it too much bc I’ll make it sound stupid— High school boy with no friends makes friends bc of this “list” that will make their high school better. The main plot line is abt friendship and not a relationship which is a nice change

More Than We Can Tell by Brigid Kemmerer

Super super fast read with some really heavy topics, boy dealing with insane childhood trauma meets video game designing girl who’s world is coming crashing down on her. Emphasizing importance on opening up to people and adolescence problems

Genesis Begins Again by Alicia D. Williams

Teenage African American girl has a really hard time by constantly getting evicted and moving from school to school. Dad is an alcoholic. Hard time accepting herself for who she is, thinks she is too “Black” goes to great lengths to lighten her skin and try and be pretty.  At her new school she makes real friends and connects with teachers who help her. Super cute and makes your heart hurt a lil

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Steig Larsson

Adult crime fiction, very intense and complicated, pretty frickan twisted but couldn’t put it down at parts. It’s pretty long and took me a while to get into it bc it’s not my typical kinda book but 6/10 enjoyed it

Ghost Boys by Jewell Parker Rhodes

Young adult about BLM, fictional 12 yr old black boy is shot from behind while playing with a toy gun in a park, he becomes a ghost and learns about other black boys who have died at the hand of white people such as Emmett Till. 8/10!! Amazing character development and a great way to broaden your horizon and take a different perspective

The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd

A MUST read bucket list book, white adolescent girl and her black nanny have a rough go with the girls father and run away to a South Carolina town in 1964, 3 black sisters take them in and the girl learns how to bee keep, learns about her late mother, and learns what it’s like to be loved, 10/10 should be a classic

Refugee by Alan Gratz

Historical fiction, Triple narrator: boy escaping Nazi Germany, girl escaping Cuba in 1994, and a Syrian boy escaping their civil war in 2015. Crazy, crazy, crazy stories of these children leaving their home behind to try and stay alive, very well written and made me sob, 9/10

In Her Skin by Kim Savage

Homeless girl, Jo, who loses her mom meets a rich girl in a library and finds out that this rich girl, Temple Lovecraft, had a best friend that was abducted when they were 9. Jo decides to become this missing friend in hopes of living a better life and finds all these dirty dark secrets about the rich Lovecraft family, 7/10

Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

A girl’s family abandons her when she’s only 5, left her with her alcoholic father, and learns to live on her own in the marsh of a small North Carolina town. A brilliant coming of age story with a murder investigation intertwined. I teared up many times, 9/10

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Roarin 20’s novel, a CLASSIC, parties and money, messy sides of what look like stable relationships, and a critique of greed and “fake” people, 10/10 one of my top ten favs & the new movie is brilliant

A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer

Basically a beauty and the beast kind of story, girl from our world ends up in a fairytale world called Emberfall and has to fall in love with the prince Rhen to break the curse. Lots of girl power, becoming a leader, and being comfortable in your own skin. Part of a trilogy, 9/10

Wrecked by Maria Padian

Very realistic almost scary how real it is written, girl gets raped freshman year of college and her roommate is interested in the friend of the rapist, no one has a clear memory of the night and it’s just very messy, all girls should read this before they go to college, 8/10