Top Three Wednesday: Top Three Contemporary YA Novels

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Another round of our Top Three Wednesday! Today we will be talking about our Top Three Contemporary YA novels. Who doesn’t love YA? There is this sense of comfort, of home-y feel when I am reading YA novels. And yes I do admit that sometimes I am too old for YA, but I just could not resist them, there this magnetic pull that I dare not fight. Because, admit it or not, we sometimes crave for the YA “feels”, the perfect one to read after a grueling, say adult fantasy or a dark book. YAs are truly a breath of fresh air.

 

 

1. Winger by Andrew Smith

You can check my review of the book here. This book just took me by surprise. I never had big expectations, I read it without knowing much about it. All I know is it is about a 14 year old boy in a boarding school. I have not read anything like it before so I went ahead and bought a copy and read it during the Anti Bullying Readathon hosted by Sarah on book tube and goodreads. I was not that excited to read the book since I thought I might not be able relate to it or identify with the character. But boy I was sorely mistaken. This book was a gem, I never thought I would like it this much. Ryan Dean West character was not one to miss. The book was funny and deep at the same time. I never thought I could get so much out of it. And that ending! Oh my goodness it broke my heart, I was sobbing like crazy. This is one of the best books I read in 2014. And oh there is this some kind of Looking For Alaska feel to it.

 

 

2. Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

Ahhhh this will always be a favorite YA of all freaking time! I never thought I could love a book so much! This book kept me company when I was in the hospital taking care of my dad. And I couldn’t have picked up a better companion. The story of Eleanor and Park is not like the typical YA stories. This one right here has depth, it was not the usual immature and whiny characters we have grown accustomed reading. Now this one for me is a cut above the rest, and to this day not one YA contemporary has replaced this in my heart. What I would trade to read it for the first time again. This book introduced me to Rainbow Rowell and her brilliance. She is one of the authors I have high respect to and on my bookish bucket list is to meet her. I love the innocence in this book, that pureness of first love and also I loved that Eleanor was the representation of undervalued girls and how her character has been a relevant one in the society we live in today. Hmmm now I’m sensing a reread coming in the future! I want to meet them again!

 

 

 

3. Puddle Jumping by Amber L. Johnson

Another book that will always hold a special place in my heart. Too bad I don’t have a physical copy! This book is about a guy who has Aspergers and a girl who helped him and the beautiful relationship that sprung from it. Gahhhddd, I cannot recommend this one hard enough! I think I have tabbed almost each page. This book was so beautifully written and after reading it you will just hug the book and cradle it for as long as you possibly could. There was sincerity, coyness and most of all – heart. I loved how this book talked about a mental condition such as Aspergers and how the characters had their flaws yet despite it, they are beautiful. This is definitely one of the best YA books out there! Amber L. Johnson is such a great writer, she weaves perfect heartfelt stories that you wouldn’t want to miss. Definitely a must read for young and adult alike!

 

So there you have it guys, another Wednesday has passed. Are you excited for the weekend, it is Valentine’s day! Where are your partners taking you? Hope you will have a great time! Till next post! Bye!

 

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Winger by Andrew Smith

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Synopsis: Ryan Dean West is a fourteen-year-old junior at a boarding school for rich kids in the Pacific Northwest. He’s living in Opportunity Hall, the dorm for troublemakers, and rooming with the biggest bully on the rugby team. And he’s madly in love with his best friend Annie, who thinks of him as a little boy.

With the help of his sense of humor, rugby buddies, and his penchant for doodling comics, Ryan Dean manages to survive life’s complications and even find some happiness along the way. But when the unthinkable happens, he has to figure out how to hold on to what’s important, even when it feels like everything has fallen apart.

Filled with hand-drawn info-graphics and illustrations and told in a pitch-perfect voice, this realistic depiction of a teen’s experience strikes an exceptional balance of hilarious and heartbreaking.

Date Published: May 14, 2013, 439 pages

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Date Read: November 19, 2014

REVIEW:

It will leave you with a gaping hole and a broken heart, like losing something you know you can never get back.

Winger is one of the best books out there and I am not even sugar-coating or exaggerating things. It is that kind of book that will crack you up and tear you up all at the same time. It was pure and unadulterated reading experience. It was well thought of, perfectly executed and was able to deliver. The book was very well-written. Ryan Dean West’s voice will draw you in, will captivate you in ways you didn’t expect. It was smooth as it was raw, it was honest and appropriate. It wrenched my heart and it would be impossible to fully recover from it. It was the perfect coming-of-age story that everyone should put in their books-to-read-before-I-die list, it does not only belong to one age bracket, but it is all encompassing. The characters were drawn not in the best light, but their flaws are what made them good.

It is not something you rush into, it is something you need to enjoy page by page. It is my first Andrew Smith and I can say that it didn’t disappoint (if I am not being too obvious already). To be perfectly honest I have been warned enough about the ending, but I think no amount preparation can ever prepare me for the emotional wreckage that has befallen me. I was so heartbroken. The stigma the book depicted is not lost on me, it was very timely, something that should be addressed immediately.

I couldn’t have picked a better book for the Anti-Bullying readathon. I just wished I have read it sooner.

I don’t know if it is just me but this book had the Looking For Alaska vibe to it.

…nothing ever goes back exactly the way it was. Things just expand and contract. Like the universe , like breathing. But you’ll never fill your lungs up with the same air twice. Sometimes, it would be cool if you could pause and rewind and do over. But I think anyone would get tired of that after one or two times.

My Rating: 5/5