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Reading Recs

YA Books to read if you’re already missing summer

Are you a warm weather person who goes straight for the big sweaters as soon as the temperature dips below 70? We understand. If you’re missing summer right now, here are 12 reads to keep the summer spirit alive!

The Counselors by Jessica Goodman

It doesn’t get much more summer than summer camp! From New York Times bestselling author Jessica Goodman comes a twisty new thriller about three best friends, one elite summer camp, and the dark secrets that lead to a body in the lake.

Kings of B’more by R. Eric Thomas

This has Phineas and Ferb’s “Let’s make this the best day ever!” energy. Follow two Black queer best friends as they face their last day together with an epic journey through Baltimore!

Melt With You by Jennifer Dugan

It’s not summer without some ice cream and a fun road trip. Melt With You has both! From the author of Some Girls Do and Hot Dog Girl comes a sweet and salty queer YA rom-com about two girls on a summer road trip in an ice cream truck.

Secrets So Deep by Ginny Myers Sain

Summer camp but add some theatre and make it creepy. For fans of We Were Liars and from the bestselling author of Dark and Shallow Lies comes a  paranormal thriller about a seventeen-year-old girl returning to camp to uncover the truth of what really happened there twelve years ago, the night her mother drowned.

The Woods Are Always Watching by Stephanie Perkins

Get ready to hit the trails for a deadly hike through the Pisgah National Forest. Best friends Neena and Josie spent high school as outsiders, but at least they had each other. Now, with college and a two-thousand-mile separation looming on the horizon, they have one last chance to be together—a three-day hike deep into the woods. Simmering tensions lead to a detour off the trail and straight into a waking nightmare … and then into something far worse. Something that will test them in horrifying ways. 

A Heavy Dose of Allison Tandy by Jeff Bishop

Nothing screams summer like…an imaginary ex-girlfriend ruining your life??! You’ve Reached Sam meets John Hughes in a funny and heartfelt debut about a boy’s delirious summertime quest with his ex-girlfriend.

Who We Were in the Dark by Jessica Taylor

Donner Lake is famous for its dazzling waters, dramatic mountains, and the travelers trapped there long ago who did unspeakable things to survive. But for Nora Sharpe, Donner was where a girl named Grace glided into her life one night and exploded her world.

But Grace is missing. And Nora must find her way through the unspoken hurts and betrayals of the last two years—and find her way back to Wesley and Rand—to figure out what exactly happened to Grace, the girl she thought she knew.

Bonus round: Summery books to look forward to!

The Davenports by Krystal Marquis – Coming Jan 31

This swoony summertime romance is coming just in time for the dead of winter to cheer up your bookshelf! The first in a breathless YA series set in 1910 Chicago, The Davenports offers a glimpse into a period of African American history often overlooked, while delivering a totally escapist, swoon-worthy read.

Never Vacation with Your Ex by Emily Wibberley and Austin Siegemund-Broka – Coming Apr 4

Get ready to go on an amazing summer vacation!…with your ex! The Summer I Turned Pretty meets People We Meet on Vacation in a YA second chance romance from fan-favorite author couple #Wibbroka.

Viva Lola Espinoza! by Ella Cerón – Coming Apr 11

A debut young adult novel that’s Pride & Prejudice with a dash of magic, about a booksmart teen who spends the summer in Mexico City, meets two very cute boys, attempts to learn Spanish, and uncovers a family secret that changes her life forever.

Lying in the Deep by Diana Urban – Coming May 2

Get ready for the perfect summer cruise…but add some murder. Get ready for a juicy mystery of jealousy, love, and betrayal, with a diverse cast of delightfully suspicious characters who’ll leave you guessing with every jaw-dropping twist.

Give Me a Sign by Anna Sortino – Coming July 11

We’ve had our fair share of scary summer camp stories on this list, so here’s a happy one instead! A girl finds a community—and love—over the course of one summer in this joyful, wholesome YA romance that celebrates Deaf pride. Think CODA meets Jenny Han!

Penguin Teen