By Erika Qualls Barnett

There’s nothing like a summer romance, right? Think of Sandy and Danny from Grease. Ok, so maybe I am dating myself with that reference, but summer seems like it is built for love. Driving around with the windows down, getting ice cream or fro-yo, or sitting by a pool are even more fun when a potential love interest is beside you. For those of you that like a little sizzle in their summer, try some of these YA books to get your romance fix.

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins. As a nerd in high school (my mom taught at my school so all teachers knew me), I often dreamed of going to boarding school. Anna, the main character in this title, doesn’t feel that way when her dad sends her to Paris for her senior year of high school. She is disappointed to leave her friends, and her crush, behind in Atlanta. When she arrives at boarding school, however, she meets Etienne St. Clair. He seems perfect for her, except for one thing…he is taken. The two embark on a wonderful friendship over their time at boarding school though. Your heart will race as the two connect on such a brilliant level, and you will cheer as Anna grows to love herself and her new life. The descriptions of Paris will also steal your heart.



The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon. If you want to cheat and watch this one in the theaters, I am sure it will be a great time. I highly recommend, however, that you also pick up the book. Yoon tells the story of two teenagers who meet one day in New York City. It is Natasha’s last day in the city as her family is being deported back to Jamaica after living in the U.S. for ten years. Daniel is trying to live up to his parents’ expectations of furthering his education by attending a college interview for Yale. They immigrated from South Korea with dreams of him becoming a doctor, but he has dreams of being a poet. The two meet and agreed to spend the day together. Told it alternating chapters, you will experience the hope and love of Natasha and Daniel.




Save the Date by Morgan Matson. A long-time favorite of mine, I recommend any of Matson’s books, but her latest title is funny and heartwarming. The youngest of five siblings, Charlie is excited to have all of her family back home for her sister’s wedding. This is the last perfect weekend in their home before it is sold and Charlie goes off to college. The only problem is that everything starts to go wrong. Family members are fighting, her brother brings home an awful date, and the weather is not cooperating. The only bright spot is the wedding planner’s cute nephew.

I also highly recommend Second Chance Summer after you finish this title! All of Matson’s books make me laugh out loud and cry, so they are perfect for your summer reading list.



If you are looking for more romances for your summer, visit any EVPL location and ask a staff member for recommendations.  Happy Reading!


Erika Qualls Barnett
Youth Experience Manager

Erika Qualls Barnett

Erika is a cardigan-loving Hufflepuff that enjoys the Cubs, reading, and walks with her husband.

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