Contemporary Reads YA + Adult | Summer Reading 2021

Hello again, dear readers. Somehow it is already September 15! With school starting, it feels as though this month is flying by. I am grateful that we still have a few more weeks of warm weather to look forward to. πŸ™‚

Anyway, over the summer I enjoyed quite a few contemporary reads, and (as usual) I am looking forward to sharing my thoughts on a handful of them. Enjoy!


The Secret Bridesmaid – Katy Birchall | 3 β˜… | 2021

After loving Birchall’s It Girl trilogy a few years ago, I couldn’t resist reading her debut adult contemporary book. And although I certainly wasn’t blown away by the story, I can’t say that I regret reading it.

I enjoyed the characters, who were lovable and the setting was lovely. The plot felt both fresh and classically trope-ish.

Why the three stars? Well: (1) There was a lot of language, obviously this book is geared to an adult audience, but still. (2) There was a bit too much telling rather than showing. (3) The characters felt much younger than their actual age.

CW: Sexual Content (PG-13), Language (R)


Where’d You Go Bernadette – Maria Semple | 3 β˜… | 2012

After watching the movie and throughly enjoying it, I thought I would give the book a chance.

I enjoyed the book, sort of. The formatting was creative, the characters were fine, and the story moved pretty quickly, but I felt the movie really took the best of the book and left the extra (almost, oddly trashy) bits behind.

Therefore, I would 100% recommend the movie over the book.

CW: Sexual Content


Tokyo Ever After – Emiko Jean | 4 β˜… | 2021

This lovely and addictive story is definitely one of my favorite YA reads of the year.

The plot was interesting, was shockingly realistic and, for the most part, moved quickly.

The characters were slightly annoying, but lovable none-the-less.

Over all, this is YA royalty at its finest and I cannot wait to read book two!


Somewhere Between Bitter and Sweet – Laekan Zea Kemp | 4 β˜… | 2021

Well, I had very high expectations for this book and it more or less met them.

I picked up Somewhere Between Bitter and Sweet expecting something similar to Tweet Cute – light-hearted, sweet romance and lots of delicious food – and instead got a book more similar to The Hate You Give, except focused on immigrants rather than black Americans.

The food truly sounded incredible and the characters were definitely lovable. That said, I don’t see myself re-reading this book, largely due to the amount of language used. I am glad that I read it though. πŸ™‚

CW: Language (R)


Off The Record – Camryn Garrett | 4 β˜… | 2021

I am honestly quite surprised by the lack of hype surrounding this book. It was well-written and engaging, as well as sad and difficult to read at times.

I fell rather hard for the characters and enjoyed the thread of the story that was about Josie’s acceptance of her body. I thought that the plot was interesting and the story moved pretty quickly.

CW: Sexual Content (Recommended for older readers), bisexual MC in f/m relationship


To Save A King – Rachel Hauck | 4.5 β˜… | 2021

I was surprised by how much I ended up enjoying TSaK, due to the fact that I was slightly disappointed by book one of the series.

The story was interesting and engagingly suspenseful. I love the characters – especially Imani, who was a somewhat realistic sixteen year old – and became quite invested in their stories.

I can honestly say that I am looking forward to book three now. πŸ˜€

CW: Sexual Content (Light PG-13, I guess)


Have you read any of these books? Do you have any contemporary recommendations for me? How has the transition back to school been for you?

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3 thoughts on “Contemporary Reads YA + Adult | Summer Reading 2021”

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