Nothing like the bliss of passing a final exam. That indescribable feeling of knowing you don’t have that load on your shoulders. Not anymore.
Although I say I won’t miss anything about college, I know I’ll probably miss that.
There’s also another spark that lights up whenever I’m done with my exams. I’m free to read novels again! And I’m sorry, but I’m not very intellectual when it comes to reading in my spare time. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve read and appreciated your Kerouacs, Bukowskis and Cortázars. They move me and excite me.
But in my spare time, I enjoy reading YA novels.
There’s something about them. Their predictability, the possibility to relate with their characters, their freshness in the way they describe the quotidian.
So I’m celebrating my first day of school freedom (until August, that is) by reviewing and recommending the three YA novels I’ve liked the most this last year. No spoilers in case you haven’t read them!
Lara Jean is a quirky, naive girl. Her world revolves around her two sisters and her amazing dad, her love for baking cookies and the content of her secret box. In that box she hides tokens, souvenirs, and 5 letters. Each one of them, written as a “closing” passage to a boy that she loves but doesn’t want to love anymore. Goodbye letters, that is, that she never sends, because she never externalizes her feelings.
Until someone sends out those letters and everything she felt-and wrote-is finally exposed. The outcome involves a love triangle, a rebellious best friend and lots of baking. I promise you’ll find this story super fresh and entertaining, and you’ll probably be eager to read the second part, out last May, “Ps. I Still Love You.”
The best part: Kitty. Lara Jean’s little sister is one of the best characters I’ve found in YA novels so far. This 10 year-old posess a natural curiosity and asks all the questions we wish we could. Also, awesome comebacks and witty remarks.
Christmas in a book. Minus the family feuds, plus lots of snow.
I read this book in my Holiday break, a time my family and I usually spend in a cabin in the mountains. December in my country is a super hot season, and choosing to read this book was the best alternative possible to a week without AC.
Stories by three different authors, three different point of views of a Christmas season full of adventures and challenges. The stories are authentic, the characters are adorable, and the plot involves a quest for cheerleaders, a broken heart and a Tinfoil Guy.
The best part: Duke. Her ferocity, her means and her courage. My favorite part of the stories.
(If you, like me, started singing that Kelly Clarkson’s song as soon as you read the title, here you go.)
Amazing playlists? Check.
A friendship all teenagers long for? Check.
A great couple to ship? Check.
Endearing stories that make you sob? Check.
An spontaneous road-trip? Check.
The YA novel of the season? CHECK.
This one it’s currently taking the top of my chart. I’ll give it to you, though. The main character, Emily, is super annoying on the first chapters. But keep on reading, I promise it’s worth it.
Since You’ve Been Gone tells the story of a girl abandoned by her best friend. The friend, Sloane, has an amazing personality surrounded by mystery, which could explain why she disappears without a trace. Well, there’s a trace. A list. A list of thirteen tasks that Emily must follow in order, she believes, to find Sloane again.
Shy, insecure Emily cannot fathom to accomplish every single item on the list. But cracking out of her shell will also mean open herself to new people and finding friends where she didn’t know she could.
The best part: PLAYLISTS. I simply ADORE when authors include their own playlists. Rob Sheffield did that in “Love is a Mixtape” and I fell in love with the idea. Here, the authors makes the music an actual part of the story, and that makes it that much better. Plus, the playlists include Taylor Swift, Passion Pit, West Coast, Cut Copy and more. I’ve already created the lists in Spotify!
I had never heard of the author, Morgan Matson, and now I can’t wait to read “Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour”, and see if it lives up to the hype.
What books have you read lately? Do you have any recommendations? Tell us about them!
And stay tuned, tomorrow is cooking day!