How was your reading year? My reading year was a mixed bag. I DNF’d a little bit more but also picked up some stellar reads as well. In the next couple days I’ll highlight my favorite reads (YA, Fiction, Memoirs, Romance), TV Shows and Movies. Today I’m kicking off with my fave YA reads of the year.
My YA reading percentage dropped this year as I find myself reading more Fiction and Contemporary Romance. About 45% of my reading was still in the YA category though. And I’m sure YA will be a big chunk of my reading in 2016.
2015 Favorites: Young Adult (2015 releases)
All American Boys by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely – This timely, powerful read is about two teens, one white and one black. Rashad is brutally attacked by a cop who mistakes him for a shoplifter, and Quinn is the witness who struggles to come forward with the truth. I recommend the audiobook for this one- outstanding narration.
What We Saw by Aaron Hartzler – Like All American Boys, this story is about witnessing a violent act and speaking up. Inspired by a true story, What We Saw is about the aftermath of a sexual assault involving popular basketball players. An addictive, thought provoking read.
The Last Time We Say Goodbye by Cynthia Hand – From my review, “The Last Time We Say Goodbye is a beautiful, heart-wrenching book about a girl who lost her brother to suicide, and is now haunted by guilt and her brother’s spirit. This emotionally devastating book tore me apart but I couldn’t put it down.”
Damage Done by Amanda Panitch – This thriller is unputdownable. From my review, “Damage Done is the book I’d hoped We Were Liars would be- if you want a book that will keep you up all night reading this is it.”
My Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga – From my review, “This debut is about two strangers who find each other through a website called Suicide Partners. Their suicide pact brings them closer, but is it enough to get them to change their minds? This book features a Turkish-American protagonist named Aysel (rhymes with Gazelle) and her culture is just one of the many interesting things about this poignant book.”
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli – This debut is about Simon, a boy who is coming to terms with his sexuality with the help of an online anonymous friend. From my audiobook review, “Michael Crouch brought Simon to life. He sounds like the teenage boy that Simon is and brings a lot of personality to the story. Simon’s personality is kind of witty, snarky, and self-conscious and that comes through in Crouch’s performance.”
Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy – From my review, “Julie Murphy’s Dumplin’ is a really fun and empowering read. Willowdean is a body positive role model who doesn’t need to change for anyone. This thought-provoking, girl power book was a joy to read and I rooted for Willowdean all the way.”
Carry On by Rainbow Rowell – From my review: “This story exceeded my expectations, and I quickly fell for Simon & Baz. There is a great combo of magic, friendship, mystery and romance that kept me captivated.” I recommend the audiobook!
Emmy & Oliver by Robin Benway – From my review, “Emmy & Oliver is a sweet coming-of-age book about friendship and family dynamics. The intriguing set up makes for a great story, as Emmy & Oliver have to find themselves as individuals after the traumatic event that kept them apart for so long.”
Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon – Everything, Everything is a book about a girl named Maddy who can’t leave her house because she is allergic to everything. A boy named Olly moves in next door and they find creative ways to communicate. This one has stuck with me and I might need to re-experience it via audio.
P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han – This follow up to To all the Boys I’ve Loved Before is charming and fun and keeps you guessing till the end.
The Start of Me and You by Emery Lord – This touching read deals with love and loss, as Paige starts to live again after losing her boyfriend in an accident.
Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen – From my review, “Sarah Dessen’s twelfth book is a little more mature than her other books but still trademark Sarah Dessen. You can expect to find a great friendship and family story, light romance, and a standout setting.”
Truly, Madly, Famously by Rebecca Serle – From my review, “This book was even more of a blast to read than Famous in Love. The Hollywood setting provides lots of opportunity for drama, and the Paige/Jordan/Rainer love triangle is as addictive as any YA love triangle I’ve seen. (Obviously you have to be cool with love triangles to get along with this series)”
For the Record by Charlotte Huang – A reality TV star gets the chance to front a popular rock band and go out on the road. She tries to prove herself to her band members and the fan, and meanwhile gets involved in a celebrity romance. Really fun music YA book!
I didn’t get the chance to review a few of these for the blog so I’m happy I got to highlight them here today. I hope 2016 is another great year for YA! What were your favorite YA reads of the year?