8 YA Books We Can’t Put Down

According to Your Tango, “you’re never too old to learn a life lesson when it’s well-written.” This is what I have come to learn about books of my youth. To this day, 30 years later picking it up, Ntozake Shange’s Betsey Brown is still my favorite book and a rite of passage into womanhood. The YA genre is big and appeals to kids of all ages. Here, I have composed the first in a limited series about YA books that are must-reads for Spring.

Royals (G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books), Rachel Hawkins

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A young teen from Florida, Daisy Winters ain’t glamorous, nor is she popular like some like her sister. Instead, she is perfectly happy blending into the background,, But, what happens when her family is thrust into the spotlight  after her sister becomes engaged to a member of the royal family? Can Daisy resist the rappings that come with fame and will she find her happily ever after? If you love The Princess Diaries, this book is right up your alley and just in time for the royal wedding coming this spring. Royals releases on May 1.

When Dimple Met Rishi (Simon Pulse), Sandhya Menon

Image: amazon.com

Dimple and Rishi have nothing in common – or so they think – their families have arranged for them to be married. Can this couple overcome tradition to find true love?

Queer There and Everywhere (HarperCollins ), Sarah Prager

Image: amazon.com

Delve into the lives of 23 historical LGBTQ figures you may not know about, like Eleanor Roosevelt.  

The Disturbed Girl’s Dictionary (Carolrhoda Lab), NoNieqa Ramos

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Debut author NoNieqa Ramos tells a powerful story about the challenges and triumphs of those who grow up under some of the worst circumstances.

Between the Lines (Nancy Paulsen Books), Nikki Grimes

Image: amazon.com

Seventeen years since Nikki Grimes’ Coretta Scott King Award–winning comes story about an inspiring writer whose only dream is to work for The New York Times.

Where I Live (HarperTeen), Brenda Rufener

Image: amazon.com

Blog editor by day, homeless by night, Linden is determined to keep her secret – that is, until she learns of one her classmate is keeping. Can she help without exposing herself?

You’re Welcome, Universe (Knopf Books), Whitney Gardner

Image: amazon.com

A racial slur about one of her best friends prompts Julia to cover it with graffiti art and unify a community.

Burn Baby Burn (Candlewick), Meg Medina

After the worst winter on record, a city erupts and what follows is, arson, a blackout, and a serial killer named Son of Sam, all conspiring to make one of the hottest summers of all time.

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Aisha K. Staggers
Aisha K. Staggers has been writing since middle school. She had her first major publication in her local newspaper's entertainment section while a sophomore in high school, a publication in another state paper followed. Aisha has been contributing to various paper, magazines and textbooks for over 15 years. In addition to her time as an instructor of social sciences in higher education, Aisha has served as a director of education and policy research centers, and on the staff of legislative commissions. Aisha previously served on the Executive Board of the CT Young Democrats Women's Caucus and has remained active in politics and public policy. She is an alumni of Albertus Magnus College in New Haven, CT and Fisk University in Nashville, TN where she earned Bachelor's and Master's Degrees, respectively, and completed the South Carolina Education Policy Fellowship Program in 2008. Currently, Aisha is Senior Editor for BookTrib, a division of the literary public relations firm, Meryl Moss Media. In addition to her own work, Aisha will be writing the liner notes for an upcoming Prince tribute album and contributing a chapter to a 2018 scholarly work on Prince and the Minneapolis Sound.