Summer is the perfect opportunity to catch up on your to-be-read (TBR) pile or throw yourself into a couple of feel-good and some not-so-feel-good books.
Whether you decide to curl up on your bed with your cat or dog by your feet, relax in a lounge chair by the pool or soak up some sun on a towel at the beach, the hottest season of the year only comes for one real reason: so you can get some pleasure reading in.
So, sit back, relax and get lost in these five young adult releases set to hit the shelves in June.
1. “If It Makes You Happy” by Claire Kann – June 4
“If It Makes You Happy” is reminiscent, in some ways, of the film “Waitress,” which is now a smash-hit Broadway musical. However, unlike the luckless protagonist of “Waitress,” in “If It Makes You Happy” Winnie has just graduated high school and is excited to start college in September. Before she can matriculate, though, she has to work in her grandmother’s diner all summer. And when she’s not at work, Winnie spends her evenings with Dallas, a boy with whom she develops a love-hate relationship.
The town of Misty Haven is small, but it’s Winnie’s home, and she hopes to inherit her grandmother’s diner someday. If it doesn’t make money though, Winnie can kiss her dream goodbye. However, she discovers a solution in the form of a televised cooking competition that awards its winner a prize purse. There’s just one problem: Winnie’s grandmother doesn’t want her to compete.
2. “This Might Hurt a Bit” by Doogie Horner – June 4
Kirby Burns has already had the worst day of his life, and he’s about to have the “second worst day of his life.” Kirby has spent the past 364 days running … from his family, his past, and everything he has ever known. But Kirby can’t run forever, and he’s going to find this out.
When Kirby and his pals, PJ and Jake, decide to pull a prank in the middle of the night, the consequences find them at school the day after. Utter pandemonium ensues. This is a heartfelt read that provides a genuine account of the heartache that follows when you lose someone or something closest to you. You’ll laugh, too.
3. “The Paper & Hearts Society” by Lucy Powrie – June 13
Lucy Powrie can usually be found on YouTube as a BookTuber. Now she’s coming out with a series that shows you what could happen when you stop trying to fit in and start standing out.
Tabby Brown, of “The Paper & Hearts Society,” is sick of trying to be like everybody else. No, she doesn’t want to go to another party, thank you very much. Why? She doesn’t like them! Tabby would much rather tuck herself into a blanket with one of her favorite reads.
She spends nights wondering if there there’s anyone else like her … That is, until she finds a club that will talk about the wonderful, amazing-ness of books. Olivia, Henry, Ed and Cassie make Tabby a little nervous, but someone draws her back.
Will Tabby be able to let go of pre-conceived notions of what it means to be normal and “live the best bookish life possible”?
4. “Call It What You Want” by Brigid Kemmerer – June 25
When you live in a small town, news travels fast. So, when Rob’s father is caught stealing money from half of the population, Rob falls from the top of the social food chain. The situation becomes further complicated when Rob and his mother are forced to care for his father after his failed suicide attempt.
Maegan is a perfectionist and an overachiever, but when her sister returns home from college with a baby bump, she finds her life upended.
When Rob and Maegan are partnered up for a calculus project, neither is willing to break down the wall they worked so hard to build. However, Maegan soon discovers something about Rob that could jeopardize their vulnerable friendship. The novel asks the question, is it okay to break the rules if your intentions are good?
5. “Better Than the Best Plan” by Lauren Morrill – June 25
Seventeen-year-old Ritzy (short for Maritza) thinks she’s got her last summer before the end of high school figured out. She’s got a job and friends to hang out with. And she’ll continue fending for herself ever since her mom left her to “find herself.”
But then someone reports Ritzy’s situation to CPS, and she’s thrown back in the system. A social worker puts her in the capable hands of Kristin, the woman who took care of Ritzy before her mom came back for her. Maybe foster care doesn’t suck after all, because soon she finds herself living in Kristin’s enormous mansion with the boy next door for company. If Ritzy’s mom had never “gotten her back,” this could have been her life. So, it begs the question: Which life was she meant to lead?
I hope one or more of these will join your never-ending TBR or you bring one to the beach, maybe even your grandmother’s house. Summer is a bibliophile’s time to let loose and crack a few spines. Don’t waste it!