Book Review: To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

“Love is scary: it changes; it can go away. That’s the part of the risk. I don’t want to be scared anymore.”

In the first instalment of a glorious young adult love story, Jenny Han’s To All the Boys I Loved Before takes readers on a romantic getaway full of bumps and twists along the way. After Lara Jean’s secret love letters are sent to all of her past unrequited love interests, she seeks the help of an old to friend to minimize the damage and get life back to normal. But when sparks come to life and other secrets from those close to her start to spill out as well, Lara Jean must uncover who she is and what she wants before more damage is done. A breathtaking story with both drama and humour, Han leaves readers with an overbearing desire to seek their own tremendous and magical love story.

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Book Review: Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz

“And it seemed to me that Dante’s face was a map of the world. A world without any darkness.

Wow, a world without darkness. How beautiful was that?”

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe is an elegantly written coming of age story, one that’s truly unique in the realm of YA literature. During one profound summer day, Ari and Dante meet and quickly become the closest friend they each have in the world. But when tragedy strikes and subsequent events occur, Ari and Dante’s friendship is put to the test. Set in the 1980’s, Sáenz’s emotional roller-coaster of a novel opens readers’ eyes to a world where openly discussed topics were once tabooed and what happens when you don’t fit into the “norm” that society has dictated for us. An addictive story with tremendously brilliant characters, Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe is nearly impossible to put down!

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Book Review: Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins

“There’s no story,’ I say. ‘I saw you one day, and I just knew.”

Isla and the Happily Ever After beautifully and poetically closes off Perkins’ incredibly enticing YA romance series with a bang! In her final year of high school, Isla discovers her high school crush returns her feelings. But when friendships come into question and doubts creep into her mind, Isla must learn to take risks and discover herself before she loses everything. From New York City to Paris to Barcelona, there’s no stopping the intensely romantic adventures of Isla and Josh. A comical and loving coming of age novel, Isla and Josh’s raw passion and magnificent connection will have readers at the edge of their seats and grasping for more until the final chapter.

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Book Review: Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

“But it’s a person’s imperfections that make them perfect for someone else.”

Lola and the Boy Next Door is an utterly adorable read, grasping the realness of that fine line between friendship and romance. A retelling of that “boy next door” classic love story, our main protagonist Lola undergo’s emotional turmoil as she must choose between the man that once broke her heart and the man who may not be fit for her heart. On top of Lola’s romantic frustrations, Perkins’ novel discusses bullying, peer pressure, familial struggles and expectations, LGBTQA+ relationships, and that ultimate desire to either fit in or stand out. A fun and fast read, Lola and the Boy Next Door is a grand coming of age romance that won’t disappoint the little romantic inside of you.

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Book Review: First & Then by Emma Mills

“A thousand electric cars could run on how you feel when you know that the person you like likes you back. It feels incredible. Like it shouldn’t be possible. Of all the happy coincidences to ever exist, it’s one of the happiest.”

A fast paced coming of age story, Mills’ standalone novel displays an accurate representation of the ups and downs of high school. As Devon’s rather mundane life goes a full 180 as her cousin moves in and her school life becomes more involved that she ever planned, she must learn to leave her comfort zone and see the world through more sets of eyes than just her own. A captivating story focusing on family and friendships and love, Mills’ First & Then is a fun read for a large reading demographic that’s sure to bring a smile on ones face.

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Book Review: Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

“Is it possible for home to be a person and not a place?”

Perkins’ YA romance novel is an absolutely delightful read, capturing the essence and rawness of young love. Set in one of the most romantic places on the globe, Anna and the French Kiss follows Anna’s adventure as she uncovers the beauty of Paris while juggling love interests, new friends, school gossip, film reviews, and family trials. A fast read illustrating the excitement and trials of high school, Perkins’ coming of age story is a fun-filled read that leaves one feeling all warm and fuzzy inside.

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Book Review: Foolish Hearts by Emma Mills

“‘It just feels like…’ her voice small. ‘Sometimes it just feels like I’m faking.’
‘Maybe everyone feels that way.'”

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Book Review: The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh

“If it was true that moss did not have roots, and maternal love could grow spontaneously, as if from nothing, perhaps I had been wrong to believe myself unfit to raise my daughter. Perhaps the unattached, the unwanted, the unloved, could grow to give love as lushly as anyone else.”

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Book Review: Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

“Nick and I look at each other.
‘I’m not holding your hand,’ I tell him, smiling a little.
‘All right’–he nods–‘but know that I would.'”

An absolutely hilarious and adorable read, Becky Albertalli’s Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda is an insightful story that will bring readers to tears, both from laughter and woe. After a student beings to blackmail Simon after discovering his secret, Simon must follow all his requests or his (and his anonymous friends) secret will be vocalized to the world. Juggling family oddness, quarrels in friendships, accepting himself and hopelessly falling for his mysterious pen-pal, Simon’s adventures will make it nearly impossible to put this book down.

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