Thursday, June 26, 2014

The First Half of 2014 Part III - Top Five Contemporary

As many of you readers already know, I'm not the biggest contemporary reader. For various reasons, this genre is simply not one of my favorites. However, this year I've been introduced to several wonderful contemporaries thanks to friends like Sunny and Juhina, and random serendipitous occasions that led to me picking up some really great contemporaries this first half of the year, and so I'm excited to share my top five of those with you.

If I'm not mistaken, this is a contemporary written by the author of Venom, a YA historical fiction series that ended recently. I read Venom and really enjoyed it, but I hadn't been overly interested in a contemporary read. However, bloggers everywhere were writing incredible reviews of this book, and bloggers who I typically get book recommendations from were loving this, so I picked it up. I'm glad I did! A lot of times books with hype don't live up to it, but this was a fun book filled with character development and with a really unique premise.

I have read almost all of Jenny Han's books over the years. Most people rave about The Summer I Turned Pretty series, but to be honest I disliked those books. I was nervous about picking up this book, but after again hearing incredible reviews and being honestly interested in the premise of this book, I wanted to pick it up. I fell in love. This book had me giggling out loud, cheering on the protagonist, following along the emotional journey, and the ending left me ready to continue on with this duology. Finishing this book made me create a 'can't wait books of 2015' Goodreads shelf so I could put P.S. I Still Love You on it. The characters are wonderful and realistic, and the story itself is completely adorable. 

I had been nervous about this series, especially when I enjoyed Burn for Burn but wasn't in love with it. Fire with Fire surprised me with how much I adored it. The characters developed even more, and I found myself immersed in the story. Lillia was definitely my favorite character in this story, and issues I had with the first book were explained by the end of this one. The ending of this book had me stop and go read back through the books immediately, and I am so excited for Ashes to Ashes. This series is fast paced, impossible to put down, and a riveting drama.

Stargirl (Stargirl, #1)
Sunny basically had me read this book when she'd heard I never read it. This is a really unique read, and there's a lot to learn from it. To be completely honest, it's not my favorite read. I thought it was a good book, but some of the things Stargirl does I didn't think were entirely appropriate despite her good intentions, and so I ended up having to take a break from the story. However the reason this is on the list is because of how it affected me. I found myself inspired by Stargirl with her general goodwill and compassion for humanity. I think that's why the book lingered with me, and why I agree it's influential and a positive way to look at humanity.

Juhina told me about the Contemporary Lovers' readalong for this book, and after hearing everyone talk about it (notice a themes for how I end up picking a contemporary to read? sound off with your recommendations in the comments!) and so I read this one. This is another book that I didn't love, but it made me think, albeit for completely different reasons than Stargirl. Love Letters is the story of Laurel coming into her own in the aftermath of her sister's death. I was interested in how the letters reflected something about who it was addressed to, and how Laurel changes as the story goes on.

So there are some of my contemporary reads from this year! 

From the paper world,


  1. I just started getting into contemporary this year and am loving it so far! I haven't read any of these actually... fail. But some of my favorites so far are Me Since You by Laura Weiss and Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell. Oh, and Jennifer Armentrout's contemporary thriller Don't Look Back.

    I have Love Letters to the Dead sitting on my shelf, but still haven't read it. Fail.

    1. This year has definitely been similar for me- I'm not a big contemporary reader at all yet suddenly I've read some good ones this year to inspire this post. Well, I've yet to read your recommendations so now we both have more contemporaries on our list to read! I've been hoping to pick up Eleanor & Park up soon.

      I read that book as part of the Contemporary Lovers readalong on the Goodreads group awhile back- if you want to discuss it as you read, feel free to message me!


Thank you for taking the time to comment. I love getting comments and responding, so thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts! Thank you so much for stopping by, I truly appreciate it!