For the next two months, I’m going to try to only read books that have to do with summer or take place in the summertime. I did this last year as well and really enjoyed it. I thought that I would make a few different posts throughout this summer, highlighting some of my favorite summer books.
The three queens of the summertime romance: Morgan Matson, Emery Lord, and the great Sarah Dessen. They also happen to be three of my favorite authors. I’m currently reading Matson’s newest, Save The Date, and it’s giving me all the summertime feels that I look for at this time of year. These three writers take the summer season trope and make it their own. While you can definitely find similarities between their books, each author brings something different.
Matson’s books are the perfect rom-com—heart, humor, and total sweetness. While her books are a little on the longer side for a beach read, her incredible talent in pacing makes the pages flyby. One thing that she really excels at is her take on friendships. In her 2016 book, The Unexpected Everything, Matson shows such care for the importance of female friendships, something that I feel doesn’t get explored enough in YA. While yes, her love interests are always swoony and well-developed, it’s her platonic relationships that really soar.
Favorite book: About ¾’s done with Save the Date and I think it might be my new favorite (review to come soon!)
Now, Emery Lord differs from Matson in that her books are a little darker in subject, but still fill that summer read role. Lord knows how to hit you right into your emotional core, right in the feels. She gave us an extremely complex character in When We Collided with Vivi, a total spitfire who suffers from bipolar disorder, all through the eyes of the boy who falls for her. Following up with a different kind of summer camp story, exploring family, faith, and love with The Names They Gave Us
Favorite Book: The Names They Gave Us made me weep like a baby.
My queen! The pioneer of YA contemporary! I started reading her books after I saw the 2003 movie How to Deal (still one of my all-time favorite movies), which was based on her two novels Someone Like You and That Summer. From then on I was hooked for good. Although not all of her 13(!) books are summer stories, she has created a world within all her books that all have such a summery feeling. Whether it’s a story about a girl spending her summer with a catering company, trying to make it through their final summer before college, or most recently, working for her mother’s wedding planning business, Dessen treats her characters with so much care. She has managed to have such a long-lasting career due to the relatable stories that she tells.
Favorite Book: This Lullaby (also one of my favorite books ever). I’m still waiting for my very own Dexter *sigh*.