As a college student, the novels that most of the English classes cover are novels and poems of the highest caliber in the genre. While these novels, such as the classic Jane Austen, are rightfully revered, reading them can be exhausting. So, I’ve been reading young adult literature that is definitely worth the read!
Blood and Chocolate by Annette Curtis Klause
Blood and Chocolate centers around a character named Vivian who is a female werewolf. Vivian, who struggles with her wolf’s carnal instincts, falls in love with Aiden who is human. Blood and Chocolate utilizes many young adult cliches. However, the cultural aspects that Vivian struggles with in order to fit in are unique to young adult novels. Despite the culture being within the monster genre, her struggles of two worlds are relatable to many who also comes from different backgrounds whose culture makes it difficult to fit in.
To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han
Lara Jean Covey is the protagonist of this adorable YA fiction novel. Like Vivian, she’s different. Lara Jean is also trying to find herself during high school, a vital time for self-discovery. She is socially awkward and idealizes romance and love from books that she’s read. Her socially introverted self, as well as other complications, prevents her from confessing her feelings to all the boys that she’s liked from childhood to her teenage years. Instead, she writes letters to her crushes that she will never send. But, when those letters are sent out, she is forced to face all of the consequences, good and bad. As a socially introverted person who reads horror and romance, Lara is a really relatable character who, like me, is fully immersed in her own imaginations that are fueled by those very same novels.
If I Stay by Gayle Forman
Mia, the protagonist, essentially has an out of body experience after a car accident which she does not remember. Little by little, she regains how she got there and discovers what she lost and what she has left after the accident. The novel is one of the most heart wrenching young adult literature books I have recently read. The family dynamics, all the love, and how they are transformed after the accident are the most heartbreaking parts of the novel. The book makes you realize how anyone can be put in a position of life or death as well as experience loss and heartbreak in an instant without warning.