Jaye Robin Brown: It’s a YA contemporary and it’s about a girl, Joanna, who has been living in Atlanta with her evangelical radio pastor father since she came out, as a pre-teen. He is getting married for the third time and moves them to a smaller town in North Georgia and has conservative inlaws. And he asks her to kinda lower her freak flag a bit to help him settle into his new marriage. They are very close and she wants to do what she can for her dad, she really loves him. But she also gets the carrot, a promise of a radio show, her own program on his radio station – which is her way… in her mind, she kinda wants to infiltrate and spread her own message. So the carrot is big enough for her to agree, but she does not anticipate meeting Mary Carlson… and finding love. So there’s this conundrum of breaking her promise to her father or going for the girl that has her heart.
But before I make the official transition to college—eek—I want to highlight a few of those books I’ve read over the years that I feel get high school right. These books stand out for their authenticity: something in their characters, their themes, and the relationships they explore deeply resonates, in my opinion, with the high school experience. They are perfect reads for anyone who wants to pick up an excellent realistic YA contemporary novel this back to school season. In my experience, not all YA portrayals of high school and of what it means to be a teenager feel fresh, but these books absolutely do. They examine the insecurity, the loneliness, and the slow self-discovery that define the everyday life of many teenagers, all while avoiding lazy clichés.
Thanks for making this list! Summer definitely becomes YA contemporary book season on book blogs and booktube, so it’s nice to have some non-contemporary books to add to my summer tbr. 😀
I’m one of those people who doesn’t really read YA contemporary, I simply much prefer fantasy. Such an amazing list of books, thank you for sharing! ^_^