3 Diverse Contemporary YA Novels to Read in 2017
Ever since I read Geekerella by Ashley Poston, I have been on a YA contemporary reading spree. I haven’t read this many delightful contemporary stories at once in a long time. I’ve had so much fun discovering books in this genre that are diverse, authentic, and relatable. The books on this list feature a person of color as the main character, are written by #ownvoices authors, and introduce readers to cultures that are rarely written about. Each character’s voice is unique, but their stories are heart-warming, endearing, hilarious, and immensely enjoyable. Here’s my list of 3 Diverse Contemporary YA Novels to Read in 2017!
Saints and Misfits by S.K. Ali
What it’s about: Janna Yusuf is many things. She is Muslim, an avid reader, a photographer, and a Misfit. She’s also keeping a dark secret about being sexually assaulted by someone in her community. As Janna experiences the trials and tribulations of being a teen, she must also find her voice and harness her inner strength to speak out against the Monster who wronged her.
Why you should it read it: A beautiful and deeply nuanced coming-of-age story about a Muslim teen and her journey to self-acceptance, love, courage, and empowerment.
When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon
What it’s about: Dimple Shah has no idea that her parents have surreptitiously set her up to meet Rishi Patel at a summer coding camp for a possible arranged marriage. For career driven Dimple, marriage is the furthest thing from her mind. But when the sparks start flying between her and Rishi, can Dimple really fight the genuine romance that is blossoming?
Why you should it read it: A super cute, funny, and light hearted love story with a bit of Bollywood magic.
I Believe In a Thing Called Love by Maurene Goo
What it’s about: Desi Lee is tired of constantly experiencing embarrassing flirting failures. When she meets gorgeous, brooding artist, Luca Drakos she is motivated to find a solution to her problem. Desi spends hours researching Korean dramas to figure out how those girls always get the guy. She discovers the formula and names it “K Drama Steps to True Love.” As she faithfully enacts each step in the plan, Desi’s life becomes more of a K Drama than she bargained for.
Why you should it read it: From beginning to end, this book is full of laughs and reads like a classic rom-com movie.
These books will make a great addition to your summer TBR. Do you have any YA contemporary suggestions for me? Leave me a comment below.
About the Pop-Culturalist Contributor, Amna
Amna is an elementary school teacher living in Texas who enjoys reading and writing about YA books in her free time. Her favorite authors include: Cassandra Clare, Sarah J. Mass, Sabaa Tahir, and Renee Ahdieh.