Welcome to another round of the Best Books of the Year so Far, where halfway through the year, I name the titles I read that I feel are the best of 2021. This year, I am switching things up a bit. Instead of listing all the best books I read in one post, I will be breaking them up by genre! So every Tuesday until mid-August, catch my favorite reads of 2021 that will make you want to rush over to your list and add to your ever-growing TBR pile!
For this week, we enter the world of YA. There are not that many YA titles this far in the year because I’m very picky with my young adult titles, like most of you know. But this year, I handpicked excellent titles where it is safe to say that it is the best of 2021 and if you pick it up, you will feel the same way!
Teens & Young Adult
The Crossing by Manjeet Mann
Manjeet Mann has delivered another emotional juggernaut that will stay with readers for many years to come. I sat in awe and amazement after I finished the book. With spiritualism filled with hope and realism, I don’t think I have enough words to explain how truly amazing this book is. I also loved how Mann told such a powerful story in two perspectives…in verse! I’ve never seen that done before and really demonstrated how Sammy’s and Nat’s story, although different, intertwined. If I could give this 10 stars, I would.
Heartstopper, Vol. 4 by Alice Oseman
I absolutely adore this series and I can’t get enough of it! But this one is by far my favorite of this series that has captured everyone’s hearts. The fact that it touched on mental health issues and it was handled with care just made the story more realistic to me and it was just so beautifully told!
Destination Anywhere by Sara Barnard
I’ve said this before and I’ll say this again, I wish I had Sara Barnard’s books when I was a teenager. They really speak to the realistic emotions, feelings that I definitely had when I was a teen. This book is no different! I had a hard time putting this one down! I was just so engrossed in the compelling writing that I found myself to be actually with Peyton. Peyton is also such a well-developed character, someone that anyone, particularly teen readers, would identify with. I kept telling myself, “I exactly felt that way!” with every internal thought she had. This is a must read for anyone. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll feel inspired and uplifted after you read the last sentence. What we definitely need for the new year!
The Broken Raven by Joseph Elliott
After falling in love with The Good Hawk, I was so excited to read the next book in this trilogy and this one did not disappoint. I’m not a big fan of fantasy and try to stay away from series but there is something about Elliott’s writing and engaging characters that keeps drawing me in. I just can’t get enough of the atmospheric storytelling and realistic characters that just touches my heart and invigorates my mind to embark this exciting adventure.
Good Girl, Bad Blood by Holly Jackson
BLOWN…AWAY! Jackson has brought readers another exciting and thrilling mystery that leaves the audience enthralled from beginning to end. Pip is my new favorite teen detective. She is talented at deductions but she has empathy and relatable, not characteristics you find in detectives. Not many YA authors can write a great sequel to already popular book and Jackson really shined here with creativity and compelling writing that will definitely make me read the next one!
Ace of Spades by Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé
Welcome to Niveus Private Academy, where money paves the hallways, and the students are never less than perfect. Until now. Because anonymous texter, Aces, is bringing two students’ dark secrets to light.
Talented musician Devon buries himself in rehearsals, but he can’t escape the spotlight when his private photos go public.
Head girl Chiamaka isn’t afraid to get what she wants, but soon everyone will know the price she has paid for power.
Someone is out to get them both. Someone who holds all the aces. And they’re planning much more than a high-school game… (Credit: Usbourne)