Summer Reading Recommendations: The YA Edition

Instead of doing one mega summer reading recommendations post, I wanted to spread the summer reading love around and do recommendations in stages. While last week I shared summer reading recs based on what I read in 2019, today I’ll be talking about all the YA books that are perfect summertime reads. 

When I think of YA summer reads, my mind instantly goes to Huntley Fitzpatrick’s My Life Next Door. My Life Next Door was THE hot book of 2014/2015, especially on BookTube. In honor of this post, I actually reread My Life Next Door during my beach and pool days this week! It wasn’t as amazing as I remembered it to be – it definitely moved down from a 5 star to a 4 star read because it really didn’t provide solutions to the book’s conflicts – it still is a really great atmospheric summer read, as it takes place in a Connecticut beach town. I never read the companion novel, The Boy Most Likely To, so I actually might give it a read this summer! 

Today Tonight Tomorrow by Rachel Lynn Solomon – Althought it doesn’t come out until July 28th, you better adjust your summer reading plans now to include Rachel Lynn Solomon’s upcoming novel, Today Tonight Tomorrow. Taking place on the last day of senior year, enemies Rowan and Neil must pair together to win their senior class game. This book’s swoony romance and adventure provides for a fun way to fulfill some wanderlust this summer. 

Starry Eyes by Jenn Bennett – I am a firm believer that all of Jenn Bennett’s YA contemporaries make for perfect summer reads, but Starry Eyes especially does so! The book follows best friends turned enemies Zorie and Lennon’s group camping trip gone wrong. 

Unclaimed Baggage by Jen Doll – One book that I always wish got more love is Jen Doll’s Unclaimed Baggage – how can its adorable cover NOT grab your attention! I actually read Unclaimed Baggage on vacation two summers ago. It is such a unique summer contemporary, following three teens and unlikely friends working at a lost luggage store for the summer.

ALL of Morgan Matson’s books: 

Second Chance Summer, Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour, Save the Date, Since You’ve Been Gone, and The Unexpected Everything

Morgan Matson’s YA contemporaries are the quintessential summer reads (hence why I had to include all of them!). I’m forever highly anticipating Morgan Matson to announce her next book. 

If you’re looking for a lakeside read with plenty of emotion (tw: parent with a terminal illness), look no further than Second Chance Summer. If you wish you were going on a road trip this summer, live through Amy & Roger in Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour.

If you’re looking for a book with plenty of friendship, Since You’ve Been Gone is perfect. If you’re looking for a contemporary comedy with a focus on family, Save the Date is the one for you. And lastly, if you love small town vibes and DOGS, I highly The Unexpected Everything.

The Summer I Turned Pretty trilogy (The Summer I Turned, It’s Not Summer Without You, & We’ll Always Have Summer) by Jenny Han 

I’ve been in a big rereading mood over the past few months, so it wouldn’t surprise me if I reread Jenny Han’s first trilogy, The Summer I Turned Pretty, soon. This trilogy is pretty much everything you can expect in YA summer contemporary, beach houses and a love triangle included. 

Love & Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch – Love & Gelato is such a go-to summer contemporary … and it deserves all the hype it gets. I definitely recommend checking out the first two books in this companion series, Love & Gelato and Love & Luck, before the third book, Love & Olives, comes out this November. 

The Way You Make Me Feel by Maurene Goo – Maurene Goo’s The Way You Make Me Feel is one of my favorite YA contemporaries that have come out over the past five years. The book follows Clare’s summer working for her dad’s food truck, so there is plenty of family focus and food truck love (and plain ol’ romance) to go around. 

Mammoth by Jill Baguchinsky-  Mammoth is another wonderful read that is so under the radar. This is another unique read with a few elements that I wish we saw more of in YA. The book follows a plus-size teen fashion blogger & budding paleontologist working on a summer dig. 

Stay Sweet by Siobhan Vivian – I think I’ll almost always find a way to get Stay Sweet on to a contemporary recommendations list. A book about an all-female ice cream shop just screams summer. 

Alex, Approximately by Jenn Bennett – Okay, so of course I had to include another Jenn Bennett book! Alex, Approximately is California summer meets You’ve Got Mail in the best way. I actually recommend not reading its official blurb because it’s slightly spoilery. 

Words in Deep Blue by Cath Crowley – Words in Deep Blue received a ton of love when it first came out in 2017, me included!! The combination of a bookshop, summer, and a whole ton of feels makes this such a great read. 

Burn for Burn by Jenny Han & Siobhan Vivian – There always has to be at least one book that you read in the summer & have to dispend your belief a little, which leads me to Burn for Burn. I suggest trying out book #1 before deciding if you want to continue on with books #2 and #3, Fire With Fire and Ashes to Ashes. This trilogy is such a throwback to early 2010 YA books, making for cheesily delicious binge-reads this summer. 

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What are some of your summer reading recs? Have you read any of the books I mentioned? Share in the comments!

5 thoughts on “Summer Reading Recommendations: The YA Edition

  1. AHHHHHHHH – I AM SO JEALOUS OF THAT FACT THAT THE NORTHERN HEMISPHERE IS ENJOYING SUMMER RIGHT NOW. I FEEL LIKE I NEED A SUMMER DO-OVER!

    But, while I suffer through another chilly Melbourne winter, I’ll have to be content with this amazing list of books because honestly – THIS LIST IS EVERYTHING! 🙌🙌🙌

    You’ve got some amazing summery books here! Some old favorites [The Summer I Turned Pretty, Love and Gelato and Morgan Matson] but I’ve realized that there are so many books here that I haven’t read yet… Basically I’m going to have to use this ENTIRE post as a TBR. 💙

    Liked by 1 person

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