I have been loving doing these two part series in which I recommend some books based on a topic! My last series was all about Graphic Novels You Need to Read! This month I wanted t talk about and recommend some must-read YA contemporaries! Contemporary is my favourite YA genre to read and talk about so this will definitely be a two-part series as I have a lot of them to recommend! Here is part one of must-read YA contemporaries!
Heartstream by Tom Pollock
“I just wanted to see you. Before the end. A taut psychological thriller about obsession, fame and betrayal, for fans of Black Mirror. Cat is in love. Always the sensible one, she can’t believe that she’s actually dating, not to mention dating a star. But the fandom can’t know. They would eat her alive. And first at the buffet would definitely be her best friend, Evie. Amy uses Heartstream, a social media app that allows others to feel your emotions. She broadcasted every moment of her mother’s degenerative illness, and her grief following her death. It’s the realest, rawest reality TV imaginable. But on the day of Amy’s mother’s funeral, Amy finds a strange woman in her kitchen. She’s rigged herself and the house with explosives – and she’s been waiting to talk to Amy for a long time. Who is she? A crazed fan? What does she want?”
I only finished this book very recently but knew I had to include it on this list. This is a contemporary thriller that I just couldn’t put down. It is packed full of twists and turns and moments that will shock you. I loved this book a lot and cannot recommend it enough if you are a fan of contemporary and thriller books!
I Hold Your Heart by Karen Gregory
“When Gemma meets Aaron, she feels truly seen for the first time. Their love story is the intense kind. The written-in-the-stars, excluding-all-others kind. The kind you write songs about.
But little by little their relationship takes over Gemma’s life. What happens when being seen becomes being watched, and care becomes control?”
This is another book that I finished very recently but one that is going to stick with me for a lifetime. This book and the topics discussed throughout it hit me very hard because I have been through very similar things. This is a hard-hitting book that came to be when I needed it. Had it been a couple of years earlier I wouldn’t have been able to pick this book up. Be sure to look for trigger warnings before reading this one but if you are in a good place to read this one it is incredible!
Fierce Fragile Hearts by Sara Barnard
“Two years after a downward spiral took her as low as you can possibly go, Suzanne is starting again. Again. She’s back in Brighton, the only place she felt she belonged, back with her best friends Caddy and Rosie. But they’re about to leave for university. When your friends have been your light in the darkness, what happens when you’re the one left behind?”
I read this book at the end of 2018 and I am still thinking about it now. This is another hard-hitting contemporary novel that left me bawling my eyes out. It is easily one of my favourite contemporary novels of the past 2 years and I loved it a lot. I thoroughly recommend it!
I Was Born For This by Alice Oseman
“For Angel Rahimi, life is only about one thing: The Ark – a pop-rock trio of teenage boys who are currently taking the world by storm. Being part of The Ark’s fandom has given her everything – her friendships, her dreams, her place in the world.
Jimmy Kaga-Ricci owes everything to The Ark too. He’s their frontman – and playing in a band is all he’s ever dreamed of doing. It’s just a shame that recently everything in his life seems to have turned into a bit of a nightmare.
Because that’s the problem with dreaming – eventually, inevitably, real life arrives with a wake-up call.”
I read this book a couple of weeks before it was fully released into the world and it has still stuck with me to this day. Alice Oseman writes beautiful stories and this one came to me exactly when I needed it. If you are a fan of bands and being a part of a fandom then you will love this one and I cannot recommend it enough!
All The Things I Never Said by Yasmin Rahman
“16-year-old Mehreen Miah’s anxiety and depression, or ‘Chaos’, as she calls it, has taken over her life, to the point where she can’t bear it any more. So she joins MementoMori, a website that matches people with partners and allocates them a date and method of death, ‘the pact’. Mehreen is paired with Cara Saunders and Olivia Castleton, two strangers dealing with their own serious issues.”
This is a book that I read whilst on holiday in Lanzarote in June and I am still talking about it. This is Yasmin Rahman’s debut novel and it is absolutely stunning! It does come with trigger warnings off the bat and you can find them in my review of this book! This book isn’t for everyone but I am positive that if you read it you will love it! I cannot wait to see what else Yasmin releases in the future!What YA contemporary books would you recommend? Which YA contemporary books do you think everyone should read? Let me know in the comments below. Be sure to look out for part two of this series coming soon!