Monday, January 30, 2012

If You Like... Contemporary YA Stand-Alones

Phase two of my If You Like posts focuses on stand-alone contemporary YA titles.

If You Like
If I Stay, by Gayle Forman
Emotional, beautiful, and tragic, this story of a girl in a coma is one book that took the YA blogging community (and hopefully all other YA readers also, right???) by storm. 
before i fall, by lauren oliver - This book has everything. It really does. Like If I Stay, it's emotional, beautiful, and tragic. And although in this case the ending appears predetermined, it leaves readers with many of the same questions that If I Stay brings up. 
looking for alaska, by john green - Like the above book this also deals with life and death and choices in a very huge way. For the characters it's life-altering; for readers it's amazing.
sea, by heidi r. kling - Though both this book and If I Stay deal with death there's more than that connecting them, and it's difficult to say quite what it is but the feelings that both books evoke are strangely similar. They're both hopeful and, in many ways, comfortable, despite the tragedy of their storylines.

If You Like
Anna and the French Kiss, by Stephanie Perkins
Ah, the single best YA love story I've read so far, the story of an American girl and British-American boy who meet in France is all kinds of amazing and wonderful and refreshing.
i now pronounce you someone else, by erin mccahan - It's darker in tone than Anna, but the love story at the center is remarkably well done and the emotions, though different and sometimes more confusing, are just as raw. In addition to the romance aspect, this book also handles a difficult family relationship in a very, very good way.
scrambled eggs at midnight, by brad barkley & heather hepler - A love story told from both POVs, this is another one with a captivating, compelling romance. This time with additional helpings of quirkiness.
this lullaby, by sarah dessen - Completely different in tone, this is your basic Sarah Dessen novel, which is to say that it has great characters, great writing, and at the center of this one, a maybe-maybe-not couple that manages to be both jaded and entirely optimistic.

1 comment:

  1. I would also recommend "13 Reasons Why" for those who liked "If I Stay" and the books in that category. I've read all of those books and I think that it falls into a similar vein. Even though it is more focused on reasons for dying then for living, it highlights the different human behaviors that lead us to the choice to live (or die). It also has a similar feel in regards to the writing, although the format is a little different.