10 New Young Adult Books for Summer 2013
Whether your summer destination is the beach, the mountains or the same old routine, these top new YA titles will help entertain you through the season.
Make your way back to the beach with Joanna Philbin's summery story set in East Hampton. The gilded lifestyle is new to Rory McShane, who is spending her summer as a "gal Friday" for a wealthy family. When she befriends the daughter of her employers, she's off on an adventure in the world of the rich and famous.
The author of "What Happened to Goodbye" and "The Truth About Forever" makes her mark on 2013 with a read fit for warm weather. In her new novel, teen couple Luke and Emaline, who have spent their lives growing up in a quiet beach town, find their relationship put to the test when a smooth New Yorker, Theo, visits for the summer. Expect the typical wave of emotions that comes with Dessen's contemporary style.
Bill Konigsberg's novel "Openly Straight" takes on the subject of adolescent self-identity, particularly that of main character Rafe. Though Rafe has been openly gay since the 8th grade, he longs to be seen as more than the token gay guy. When he transfers to a private all-boys school, he decides to go back in the closet. This new twist on the "outsider trying to fit in" trope has a contemporary twist, as Rafe finds that his experiences can help others.
Long-lost twins! Telepathy! In another time, Imogen Howson's "Linked" could have made for an amazing episode of "The Twilight Zone" but lucky for fans of supernatural lit, this twisted story is here for us to read in the hazy days of summer. Elissa is the girl who has it all… until she starts having creepy visions and discovers that they are real, and that the horrors are happening to her estranged twin, Lin. When the girls reunite and escape the government that has been performing tests on Lin, they must get away for good.
It's a great time to be a fan of dystopian lit, as each season brings a fresh breed of post-apocalyptic books to choose from. This summer, keep an eye out for Joelle Charbonneau's "The Testing." Recent graduate Malencia (Cia) Vale is selected for The Testing, a government-run program that takes the cream of the crop and turns them into leaders. But the process isn't for the light of heart, and Cia must prepare herself for the challenges--some of which are horrible--to come.
If you are the type to judge a book by its cover, then you'll definitely be picking up Amanda Sun's "Ink." Lucky for you, the inside of this novel is just as beautiful as the outside. Sun's story of a teen expat living abroad is cross-section of cultural, supernatural and contemporary topics. Set in Shizouka, Japan, Katie Greene notices strange things starting to happen when she's near cool kid Tomohiro--things like drawings start coming to life. Rooted in the legend of the kami--ancient Japanese rulers--this story is unputdownable.
Not to be confused with Julie Cross's time travel novel of the same name, S. J. Kincaid's follow-up to "Insignia" continues the sci-fi story of Tom Raines and the militaristic Intrasolar Forces. When Tom discovers that the training camp known as the Pentagonal Spire isn’t what it seems, he must decide whether he will stay true to his friends or make a sacrifice that will save his country.
Matthew Quick's "Silver Linings Playbook" helped Jennifer Lawrence score her first Oscar. Here, he's writing for teens in this compelling, important novel about gun violence. In the vein of Jay Asher's "Thirteen Reasons Why," Quick's novel has some epistolary chapters that reveal why Leonard Peacock decided to put a gun in his backpack with an intent to kill his former best friend. In a time when bullying and gun violence is at the top of the national conversation, this novel serves as a literary segue for teens, parents and teachers into an open dialogue on sensitive topics.
Ten years ago, David Levithan left his mark in the YA world with the publication of "Boy Meets Boy." This year, Levithan brings us his based-on-a-true-story book about two teens, Harry and Craig, who are about to embark on a kissing marathon to set a new world record. The story is narrated by a chorus of "the generation of gay men lost to AIDS." Levithan takes contemporary to a whole new space with this novel, finding new ground in storytelling around important issues that directly affect teens today.